Liberal MP Jamie Briggs has had an annus horribilis.
The South Australian member for Mayo resigned as a minister in Malcolm Turnbull’s government in December last year following an “incident” with a government official in a bar in Hong Kong. He injured himself a few months earlier following a party in Tony Abbott’s office on the night he was rolled as PM.
Tonight Briggs lost his job, with a swing of nearly 19% to South Australian independent MP Nick Xenophon’s team.
After a tough fight tonight hasn't been our night, thanks to those who supported me and my best to the new member, its a great electorate
— Jamie Briggs (@BriggsJamie) July 2, 2016
The Liberal Party was worried throughout the election about South Australia and the rise of Xenophon’s party. Many viewed Malcolm Turnbull’s decision to award the contract to spend $50 billion building submarines in the state as an attempt to sure up support for the government.
This was the seat expected to fall first for the government and with 57% of the vote counted Rebekha Sharkie in now the independent MP for Mayo.
It’s the first time the seat been lost by the Conservative side of politics.
Overall there’s around a 10% swing against the Coalition in South Australia, and Labor has not benefitted, also losing 5% of its vote.
She is Xenophon’s first lower house member, with the eponymous senator potentially being joined in the upper house by perhaps two more candidates in his name.
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