The federal seat of Newcastle has remained a Labor stronghold after another decisive victory by incumbent Federal Member for Newcastle, Sharon Claydon. 

Federal Member for Newcastle, Sharon Claydon, thanked her supporters on May 21.

“I am so grateful to receive the support of the people of Newcastle to once again be their Federal Member for Newcastle, as part of an Albanese Labor Government,” Claydon said.

“It is an incredible privilege to be Newcastle’s voice in the Australian Parliament, and I will continue to fight every day for our community as we build a better future for all.”

Despite the previous few years of the pandemic representing a “challenge” for Novocastrians, Claydon said she was proud of the Newcastle community for “coming together”.

She said the people of Newcastle overwhelmingly backed Labor’s plan for a better future.

“Labor’s plan spoke to Novocastrians about the issues most important to us and our region,” she said.

“Now it’s time to get to work.”

As the 2022 federal election is the first time Labor has been elected to government during Claydon’s nine-year tenure, she signalled her intention to deliver on commitments she had made.

This included delivering funding to local domestic violence organisations, addressing the recruitment of general practitioners to the Hunter and reopening the GP Access After Hours Clinic, which was closed on Christmas Eve last year.

“Being part of Albanese Labor Government means that we can now set the agenda and shape our nation’s future,” she said.

“I will use my voice in Canberra to deliver on the commitments I have already made.

“This is alongside Labor’s national agenda: establishing a National Anti-Corruption Commission, taking real action on climate change, making childcare cheaper, fixing the aged care crisis, tackling housing affordability and implementing the Uluru Statement from the Heart.”

Labor Leader, Anthony Albanese, was sworn in as Australia’s 31st Prime Minister on May 23.

Labor candidates had a sweeping victory across the Hunter Region, with four Labor members elected to the House of Representatives.

The Australian Labor Party held on to the marginal seat of the Hunter as five-time Olympian, Dan Repacholi, claimed victory in a career-first.

Pat Conroy has retained the seat of Shortland, leading by 9,295 votes over contending Liberal candidate, Nell McGill. 

Labor member, Meryl Swanson also claimed the seat of Paterson in a close race against the Liberal candidate, Brooke Vitnell.

In Newcastle, the Greens celebrated their largest-ever swing of 4.5 per cent, securing one in five votes in the electorate.

Greens candidate for Newcastle, Charlotte McCabe, expressed her gratitude for the “Greenslide” within Newcastle and across the wider nation.

“The Liberal party usually has the second-highest vote in Newcastle after Labor, but this time we got almost the same number of votes as them,” she said.

“Next time, we will overtake the Liberals and become the new contest for the seat.

“This will mean both major parties will be having a close look at our policies and wondering what they can do to win some of those Green votes back.”

McCabe said the Greens’ policies on climate change and inequality had resonated across the country. 

At the time of writing this article, 78.2 per cent of votes had been counted in the Newcastle Electorate.

Of those votes, 44.3 per cent of constituents elected Claydon as their first preference, 24.3 per cent elected Liberal candidate, Katrina Wark, while 20.2 per cent elected Charlotte McCabe. 

While the Australian Electoral Commission has been counting votes since polls closed on May 21, postal votes are expected to take up to two weeks to arrive and be sorted.

Maia O’Connor