Count update: Courtney elected, ALP tipped to take Greens’ seat

The fifth and final seat in Bass looks as though it will go to Labor candidate Jennifer Houston, as counting for the state election wrapped for the night on Wednesday.

The Liberals have retained all three of their seats in the Northern electorate, with Sarah Courtney getting over the line to join Peter Gutwein and Michael Ferguson in the new Parliament.

It is expected the make-up of the House of Assembly will be finalised by March 15, with the Tasmanian Electoral Commission hoping to finish the distribution of preferences by the morning.

Electoral Commissioner Andrew Hawkey said it looked like Ms Houston would “just squeak home”.

The ALP candidate is facing off against incumbent Greens MHA Andrea Dawkins, as well as George Town Mayor and Liberal candidate Bridget Archer, who is the sole surviving Liberal candidate in Bass after Simon Wood was excluded from the count.

Ms Houston has 6654 votes, Ms Dawkins has 6571 and Ms Archer has 3505.

Political analyst Kevin Bonham said Ms Archer did not have much of a chance of winning a seat, despite Mr Hawkey saying it was still a race between the Liberals, the ALP and the Greens.

“For Labor to be behind the Liberals, the Liberal leakage rate would have to be spectacularly low,” he said.

“I feel pretty strongly that that is just not going to occur.”

Dr Bonham said history showed that Liberal preferences in Bass flowed more to Labor than to the Greens.

Jacqui Lambie Network preferences, meanwhile, have been going more to the Liberals than to Labor.