Colin Barnett is set to be re-elected as Premier as West Australians go to the polls today, with his Government expected to win with an increased parliamentary majority.
As Labor strategists conceded yesterday that they did not believe they could win enough seats to take government, Mr Barnett - on a bus tour of Perth's suburbs - was optimistic about the outcome.
Some Liberal MPs are confident of a swing that could deliver the Government as many as 30 of 59 seats in the Legislative Assembly.
While sources within the Liberals' campaign headquarters were quick to hose down those expectations, senior MPs were confident the party would hold Morley and win Albany, Forrestfield and Balcatta from Labor.
They were also optimistic the rural seat of Collie-Preston could be wrested from the grasp of veteran Labor incumbent Mick Murray.
Today's Newspoll has the Government winning 59.5 per cent of the vote to Labor's 40.5 per cent on a two-party preferred basis.
That would return the Premier with an increased majority.
Labor party internal tracking has projected it would win some-where between 20 and 26 seats, with its campaigners fearing that the final result would be at the lower end of the range.
Mr Barnett was joined by Liberal ministers, MPs, staffers and the media on a bus tour that visited the city sites of his most high-profile infrastructure projects including Elizabeth Quay, the Perth City Link, the Burswood stadium, the new children's hospital and the Mirrabooka light rail line.
Mr Barnett seemed relaxed, confident and upbeat as he declared he was "optimistic" about the election.
"I hope our efforts as a Government are recognised and supported but at the same time there will be at least a dozen seats that can go either way," he said.
Opposition Leader Mark McGowan, who spent yesterday in marginal Labor seats including Joondalup and Balcatta, returned to his key election themes of being an everyman who had a long career ahead of him.
The Labor campaign was left seething at the overt participation of West Coast and Fremantle AFL players in Mr Barnett's electioneering yesterday.They appeared alongside the Premier at a media event to back the Burswood stadium.
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