Seat of Swan elects first female in 101-year history


Zenta Mascarenhas is the first woman to hold the seat of Swan in its 101-year history. Picture credit: Labor

With almost two-thirds of ballots counted in the federal WA seat of Swan, Labor has already won back a seat it has not controlled since the mid-2000s.

Labor’s Zaneta Mascherenas has become Swan’s first female representative, thanks to Greens preferences cementing her lead at more than 14,000 votes and counting.

So far, the Greens candidate for Swan, Clint Uink, has seen a 2.91 per cent swing towards the party, making it the second highest Greens primary vote ever recorded in the seat.

In contrast, the Liberals’ Kristy McSweeney, had a 13.3 per cent swing away from her with at least 15,000 less votes than her predecessor Steve Irons scored in 2019.

Retired Greens MLC Robin Chapple says the problem for the Liberals in this election was a lack of progressive climate policy.

“The general mood of the population in recent times, we’ve seen the floods, the fires… the fact that the poles are diminishing in size, it’s becoming front and centre,” Mr Chapple said.

“It was very, very shallow of the Liberal party not to do anything progressive in that space, I think if they had the election might’ve had quite a different outcome.

“People feel more comfortable now to park their vote with (The Greens). People now understand that if they vote one Green and the Green doesn’t get in, their vote goes at full value to the person they mark two,” he said.

A 3.12 per cent swing towards the Greens in the Senate has also re-elected WA’s only Aboriginal female senator ever, Yamatji Noongar woman Dorinda Cox.

Ms Cox says the message is very clear.

“Western Australians want a future that is better for all of us,” she said.

Mr Uink says communities have spoken, across Swan, across WA and across the country, and they have had enough of the destructive agenda of the Liberal-National Coalition.

“Off the back of a massive grassroots campaign, I’m thrilled to see the Greens vote increase to our highest ever in WA and nationally. With up to 12 senators and six seats in the House of Reps, The Greens could be in the best position ever to hold the government to account on climate change action and inequality.” he says.

Swan is not the only seat in WA that has experienced a shift to the left, with Hasluck and Pearce going to Labor, and Curtin likely to go to TEAL independent Kate Chaney.

Swan has been held by Steve Irons for the Liberal party since 2007.