Welcome result in Canning and hero's welcome in Sydney for Turnbull

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Welcome result in Canning and hero's welcome in Sydney for Turnbull
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

It was a cracker Saturday for the new prime minister.

Not only did the Liberals retake the seat of Canning in a poltically crucial by-election, Malcolm Turbull's taking of the Lodge, Kirribilli house and the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet seems to have had a direct influence on avoiding a massive swing against the party.

Former SAS captain turned politician Andrew Hastie became the newest member of the Australian Parliament, winning the seat comfortably despite a swing of six per cent away from his party.

“The people of Canning have a decision to make and over the past four to five weeks, I believe I’ve made the case that I would be a good representative for Canning in Canberra," he said during the election day.

Former incumbent, the late Don Randall, held the seat on 12 per cent.

Many voters suggested they were not going to vote for the Liberal Party, but Monday's switch to Turnbull from Abbott prompted them to switch their votes.

The coup against Abbott was also welcomed by the people East Sydney - the home of Turnbull's electorate of Wentworth.

Beneath a shining sun, the prime minister took a walk down Oxford Street among his closest constituents and was greeted like a rock star.

The reception at home and the result on the opposite side of the country will no doubt let him sleep well ahead of Sunday's Cabinet reshuffle announcement.

The PM is set to reveal his new front bench on Sunday with Social Services minister Scott Morrison widely anticipated to be named treasurer in place of Joe Hockey.

Reports also suggest Education Minister Christopher Pyne, who backed Mr Turnbull in the ballot, will move to defence.

Employment Minister Eric Abetz and Defence Minister Kevin Andrews are expected to be dumped from cabinet, and Michaelia Cash, Marise Payne, Kelly O'Dwyer, Arthur Sinodinos and Simon Birmingham are considered likely for promotion.

The new ministry will be sworn in on Monday but Mr Turnbull remained tight-lipped about the reshuffle when questioned on Saturday.

Meanwhile, the result of the by-election in the federal Perth seat of Canning were expected to be known on Saturday night.

Labor appears to be bracing itself for a loss but Liberal candidate Andrew Hastie said during the afternoon he wasn't taking anything for granted and planned to campaign until the last minute.

The latest opinion poll has pointed to a comfortable win for Mr Hastie at 57-43 against Labor candidate Matt Keogh on a two-party preferred basis.

When questioned before polls closed Mr Keogh said he was "definitely hopeful" although he conceded it was a tough ask.

While Mr Keogh was flanked by his family and the Labor faithful, in nearby Byford Mr Hastie was surrounded by a sea of supporters and family as well as Julie Bishop.

The foreign minister defended the absence of Mr Turnbull on the campaign trail on Saturday, saying he was too busy to visit Perth in support of Mr Hastie.

"Malcolm would have been here if we'd asked him to," she said.

The by-election was previously considered a referendum on former prime minister Tony Abbott's leadership but is now being touted as a measure of Mr Turnbull's appeal in the nation's top job.

The by-election was triggered by the sudden death of sitting Liberal MP Don Randall, who won by a 12 per cent margin in the 2013 federal poll.

Morning news break – September 20

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting