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Adam Carr's Election Archive

Australian federal election, 2019
Division of Fowler, New South Wales

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South-western Sydney: Bossley Park, Cabramatta, Chipping Norton, Liverpool, Warwick Farm
State seats: Parts of Cabramatta, Fairfield, Holsworthy, Liverpool and Prospect
Local government areas: Parts of Fairfield and Liverpool
Enrolment at close of rolls: 106,975
1999 republic referendum: Yes 51.9
2018 same-sex marriage survey: No 63.7

Sitting member: Chris Hayes (Labor): Elected 2005 by-election, 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016

2007 Labor majority over Liberal: 18.3%
2010 Labor majority over Liberal: 8.8%
2013 Labor majority over Liberal: 16.8%
2016 Labor majority over Liberal: 17.5%

Status: Very safe Labor

  • 2016 results
  • Statistics and history

  • Candidates in ballot-paper order:

    1. Francesca Mocanu
    Christian Democratic Party
    2. Chris Hayes
    Australian Labor Party
    3. Joshua Jabbour
    United Australia Party
    4. Seamus Lee
    Australian Greens
    5. Wayne Blewett
    Liberal Party

    Candidate websites:

    Chris Hayes
    Seamus Lee

    Division of Fowler

    Fowler was created in 1984, based in the heartland of Sydney's south-western suburbs in the Liverpool-Cabramatta area. Over the past 30 years this has become Australia's most economically and socially deprived urban area. Fowler usually has among the highest rates of unemployment, of families in poverty, and of people with no post-school qualifications, of any urban seat. The electorate also has the country's highest proportion of people born in non English speaking countries, the bulk of whom were born in South-East Asia. It has the highest proportion of non English speaking households (72%) of any seat in Australia.

    Not surprisingly, Fowler has always been a very safe Labor seat. But the Labor Party has never used this, one of its safest seats, as the base for a candidate with ministerial, let alone leadership, prospects. Its first two members, Ted Grace and Julia Irwin, were undistinguished backbenchers. In 2010 Irwin retired, and the seat was used to accommodate Chris Hayes, who had been displaced from Werriwa.

    Chris Hayes, Labor MP for Werriwa from 2005 to 2010 and for Fowler since 2010, was assistant national secretary of the Australian Workers' Union and senior adviser to the Police Federation of Australia and New Zealand before his election. He won the 2005 by-election in Werriwa caused by the resignation of Mark Latham. The 2010 redistribution resulted in John Murphy moving from the abolished seat of Lowe to Reid, and Laurie Ferguson moved from Reid to Werriwa, requiring Hayes to move to the vacant Fowler. This provoked a sharp swing again Labor in 2010, but Hayes has since restored Labor's dominant position. He became Chief Government Whip in 2013 and has been Chief Opposition Whip since 2013.

    The Liberal candidate, Courtney Nguyen, was forced to withdraw owing to doubts about her citizenship. Her last-minute replacement is Wayne Blewett, about whom nothing is known. The Greens candidate, Seamus Lee, is an IT specialist.


    Median weekly household income: $1,212 (Australia $1,438)
    People over 65: 13.4% (Australia 15.8%)
    Australian born: 40.0% (Australia 66.7%)
    Ancestry: Vietnamese 16.3%, Chinese 11.2%
    Non-English-speaking households: 72.3% (Australia 22.2%)
    Buddhism 19.8%, Muslim 6.4%
    Catholics 26.7% (Australia 22.6%)
    No religion 13.1% (Australia 29.6%)
    University graduates: 12.7% (Australia 22.0%)
    Professional and managerial employment: 22.9% (Australia 35.2%)
    Employed in manufacturing and construction: 29.7% (Australia 22.9%)
    Paying a mortgage: 27.9% (Australia 34.5%)
    Renting: 38.2% (Australia 30.9%)
    Traditional families: 43.9% (Australia 32.8%)


    Ted Grace (ALP) 1984-98
    Julia Irwin (ALP) 1998-2010
    Chris Hayes (ALP) 2010-

    Boundaries following 2016 redistribution:

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