Electorate form guide: Port Adelaide
Electorate: Port Adelaide
Margin: Labor 12.0%
Location: Inner Northern Adelaide, South Australia
In a nutshell: Covering solidly working-class suburbs north of the Adelaide city centre, Port Adelaide has been secure for Labor since its creation in 1949 and is certain to remain so this time. Mark Butler succeeded Rod Sawford as member in 2007.
Electorate analysis: The electorate of Port Adelaide was created in 1949 from an area that had previously made Hindmarsh a safe seat for Labor. It currently includes Port Adelaide itself and inner northern suburbs including Seaton and West Croydon. The latter area does not include the coastal strip immediately south of Port Adelaide from Semaphore Park to Grange, which it lost to Hindmarsh in the 2004 redistribution in exchange for nearly 30,000 voters at Salisbury and Parafield from abolished Bonython. Labor’s strength in the seat was such that the Liberals did not field candidates in 1954 and 1955, when it was opposed only by the Communist Party (which was still fielding candidates as recently as 1983). Rod Sawford assumed the seat at a by-election in 1988 upon the resignation of the rather more high-profile Mick Young, member since 1974. He retired at the 2007 election, and there have been occasional suggestions since he might run for state parliament as an independent. His successor has been Mark Butler, previously an official with the Left faction Liquor Hospitality and Miscellaneous Workers Union, and a descendant of two former conservative premiers – his great- and great-great-grandfathers, both of whom were called Sir Richard Butler. He was promoted to parliamentary secretary for health in the June 2009 reshuffle that followed Joel Fitzibbon’s demise as Defence Minister.
Analysis written by William Bowe. Read Bowe’s blog, The Poll Bludger.