Labor Concede The 'Unlosable' Election

Bill Shorten has called Scott Morrison to concede defeat in the election.

Though official counting is still underway and could take days to analyse, the Coalition has almost secured enough seats to form majority government.

Labor had been tipped to claim victory by all major polls in the lead-up to voting on Saturday. With almost 60 percent of the vote counted by 10.45 pm on Saturday, five seats remained in doubt, with the Coalition on 74 seats and  Labor trailing on 66.


READ MORE: Tony Abbott Has Spectacularly Lost Warringah

10 News First analysts have determined it is not possible for Labor to win enough seats to form Government. Analyst James Stewart said on 10's Your Vote coverage that the Coalition definitely had 74 locked in, with at least three more that they would likely win, getting them over the magic number of 76 to form government.

Swings towards the Coalition in Queensland was a massive blow to Labor, and they didn't pick up nearly enough seats in Victoria which they had their eye on.

The unexpected win has brought about questions around news polls. Multiple news polls had Labor in the lead over the Coalition on a two-party-preferred basis in the lead up to the election.

This is already being compared to John Hewson's 1993 "unloseable election" where he lost to John Howard's Liberals.

But with more than four million pre-poll votes still to be counted, it could still be days until the votes are finalised.

Labor supporters watch the tally count at the Federal Labor Reception. Photo: AAP Image/Lukas Coch

The Labor loss is expected to signal the end of Shorten's time as leader of the opposition -- after years of failed bids to bring his party to power.

READ MORE: 'I'd Rather Be A Loser Than A Quitter': Tony Abbott Concedes Warringah

READ MORE: A Letter To The New Prime Minister, By Lisa Wilkinson

Former Labor Senator Sam Dastyari has called the election figures an 'unmitigated disaster' for Labor.

He said it was time up on Shorten as leader, and said the best result would be if senator Penny Wong moved from the upper house to the lower house and contested the leadership.

"It looks like Labor has lost the unlosable election and there will be a reckoning in the Labor party," Dastyari said.

On the campaign trail last week, Shorten's side were reserved and quiet about their chances, giving little away -- but one advisor 10 daily spoke to brought up Hewson's 1993 "unloseable" election, saying they didn't want to be responsible for a similar historic and infamous defeat.

Fellow Labor senator Kristina Keneally said her "heart is breaking" for her leader.

Labor frontbencher Anthony Albanese, Shorten's leadership rival during a 2013 ballot, is poised as the one to challenge for the top job if and when Shorten steps down.

"I believe our greatest strength is the people in this room, your values. The fact is that, tonight, is an outcome which is disappointing," Albanese said in his victory speech, after winning his Sydney seat of Grayndler.

"I was hoping by, tonight, to be in a position of coming in and being certain that we would be in a position to form government."

He said the party was "much bigger than any individual", which some saw as an oblique reference to the need for change in the ALP.

Labor supporter as he watches the election results live in Perth. Photo: AAP

Wong, who was a guest on the ABC's election night panel, wouldn't be drawn on leadership speculation at this point.

"I'm not going to do that," she said bluntly, when asked about who would helm the party tomorrow.

"The election result is still not yet clear. You indicated, Bill would speak and I'm certainly not going to respond to that."

Listen to Hugh Riminton and Peter Van Onselen in The Professor and The Hack discuss all things #Auspol. 

Listen on Acast | Listen on Apple | Listen on Spotify