Melbourne suburbs ‘turning into Queensland’, Labor warned

Melbourne suburbs ‘turning into Queensland’, Labor warned

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It is a disappointing outcome for the Labor party which hoped to win four seats in the state in Saturday’s poll.

The Liberal Party also comfortably held another outer suburban seat targeted by Labor, La Trobe, one of several electorates where government MPs increased their majorities against expectations.

But Premier Daniel Andrews was defiant on Tuesday, saying “if I’d got the result in Victoria that Scott Morrison got on Saturday, I wouldn’t be standing here because I would have been out”.

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As Labor continued to reel from Saturday’s defeat, key Victorian strategist Kosmos Samaras warned his colleagues that they faced the same fate as the Queensland ALP unless they reconnected with their traditional working class base in Melbourne’s outer suburbs.

“At this election, Labor lost votes in blue collar suburbs,” Mr Samaras wrote in a Facebook post.

“It had swings against it in established outer suburbs of Melton, Werribee, Craigieburn. The south west, west and north west of Melbourne is slowing turning into a Queensland. I’m not making this up, go and have a look at the primary votes within these areas over the last 20 years.”

Mr Samaras, a former senior staffer to Premier Daniel Andrews, said the reasons for losing ground among traditional Labor support were “complex”.

“The reasons why these communities are steadily moving away from Labor are not because of one election campaign,” Mr Samaras wrote.

“They are complex, which includes culture, self-identity and how the broad Left projects itself upon them.

“Working class people did vote for Labor at this election. But a growing number of them are not and the multi-generational attrition is catching up with us.

“If we do not address it, Queensland will become the whole country.”