Key Vic MP less than '50-50' to keep seat

November 29, 2022 03:28 PM AEDT | By AAPNEWS
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High-profile upper house crossbencher Fiona Patten admits she is more likely than not to lose her seat, as counting continues in tight Victorian election races.

Final results from the Legislative Council are set to become clear in coming days but it appears both Labor and the coalition will have 15 seats.

The crossbench is likely to be made up of 10 mostly progressive-leaning members, including three Greens and seven from micro parties.

Among them are three potential candidates from Legalise Cannabis Victoria, one from the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers, one from the Animal Justice Party and one from Pauline Hanson's One Nation.

Ms Patten, who leads the Reason Party, is at risk of losing her seat to disgraced former Labor minister turned Democratic Labour Party hopeful Adem Somyurek.

The 58-year-old said she had a "less than 50-50 chance" of being elected for a third term.

"It's a competition and someone's got to lose, and it looks like it'll be me this time," Ms Patten told AAP.

Ms Patten hit out at the Animal Justice Party, alleging they spoke to so-called "preference whisperer" Glenn Druery about organising deals for conservative minor parties while at the same time engaging with a progressive bloc of candidates.

"I don't appreciate being lied to. I think they played it dirty and they played it dirty on both sides," she said.

Ms Patten said she had no regrets about her time in parliament, naming voluntary assisted dying legislation, safe access zones around abortion clinics, supervised injecting rooms and decriminalising sex work among her achievements.

"Most of the reasons why we call the Andrews government a progressive government were bills that were initiated by me," she said, adding she was feeling well after being diagnosed with cancer in September.

Several lower house seats were neck and neck as of Tuesday afternoon, including Bass, Hastings, Hawthorn, Mornington, Preston, Northcote and Pakenham.

Labor is on track to win more than 52 of the 88 seats in the lower house despite a plunge in its primary vote and double-digit swings against it in Melbourne's north and west.

The Victorian Electoral Commission said while the count had progressed, a final result and the unveiling of the 60th Victorian parliament were several days away.

Counting won't be completed until after all the postal ballots are returned by 6pm on Friday.

"Particularly for those close seats, we might not have an outcome until all of that has occurred," a commission spokeswoman told AAP.

Daniel Andrews comfortably secured a third term on Saturday night, paving the way for him to become Victoria's longest-serving Labor premier in April.

The premier said Labor caucus could meet later this week to decide the makeup of his latest ministry before members are sworn in but he wants to wait for results to be firmed up.

Mr Andrews wouldn't be drawn on whether the potential addition of three Legalise Cannabis Party representatives in the upper house would force him to reconsider his opposition to exploring decriminalisation for adult use this term.

"We should wait until the VEC press the button and we know exactly who is in the upper house," he told reports at the construction site for a new Footscray hospital.

Parliament will return for one day before Christmas after the writ is returned, expected on or about December 19.


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