The NSW Election Is Set to Be One Of The Most Unpredictable Yet
What to expect four-weeks out from the State Election.
The State Race is underway.
Vying for victory is the state's second female Premier Gladys Berejiklian.
She was elected by her party room as leader but hasn't been endorsed by the public yet.
The loss of only six seats will see her government fall into minority.
Her opponent is Michael Daley, who only became Opposition leader last November.
Labor faces the mammoth task of needing to win 13 seats to win a majority or up to 10 seats to form a minority government.
That's why the role of minor parties and independents loom large at this election, especially with opinion polls showing the major parties neck and neck.
The question is - with the economy in the black, projects being built left, right and centre and bucket loads of cash being spent on the cost of living, schools and hospitals - why is the government looking at possibly being punished?
Some say eight years in government is too long, others that the disruption felt by yet to be completed projects is too much and then there’s the general discontent with the major parties.
There's a feeling that this election is not a general test of the public's mood - it's a series of by-elections with different issues at play depending on where you live.
Broadly speaking though, overdevelopment, cost of living and schools and hospitals seem to be the main issues preoccupying voters, not to mention the growing anger over changes to music festival licenses sparked by drug-related deaths over summer.
In the country, it's water security (catapulted onto the national and international stage through the recent fish kills), policing and infrastructure.
Those in the Liberal camp are feeling pretty confident about retaining their seats, those in Labor readily admit forming government is like “climbing Everest” so the pressure is in the country and on the nationals to keep their seats.
The conventional view is that in Sydney, the Liberal-held seats of Coogee and East Hills are the most vulnerable to a Labor takeover.
In the bush, Orange and Wagga Wagga look to be held by the newly installed independents although there’s more optimism among the Nationals, they’ll be able to retake Wagga.
Barwon and Dubbo are Nationals held seats at risk of falling to minor parties or independents.
On the north coast, Nationals held seats in Lismore, Upper Hunter and Tweed are in trouble and the Greens held seat of Ballina is a three-way contest with Labor and the Nationals.
But be prepared for some surprises including in Coffs Harbour, Myall Lakes, the Entrance, Granville and Penrith.
What’s predictable is the multi-million dollar promises which have already been coming thick and fast from both sides of politics, will only continue.
What’s unpredictable is how the numbers will fall with so many variables in marginal and not-so-marginal seats.
With four weeks to go, anything can happen.
Strap yourself in.