The Election Was Won And Lost In These Seats That Labor Needed - But Failed - To Blitz

Where did Labor go wrong? How did the Coalition government pinch this one?

These will be the subject of long investigation and soul-searching for the ALP and its new leader, with Shorten stepping down and senior frontbencher Anthony Albanese putting his hand up -- among other potential contenders -- for the job.

What is clear is the published opinion polls, clearly in Labor's favour, did not reflect the feeling of electorate. The party bled votes in Queensland, NSW and Tasmania.

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Bill Shorten concedes defeat. PHOTO: AAP

With just under 75 percent of the vote counted, the Coalition is still two seats short of the 76 seats it needs to form a majority in Parliament.  Labor appears to hold 66 seats, with six crossbenchers.

According to the latest AEC tally on Sunday afternoon, three seats remain neck and neck: Chisholm (Victoria), Macquarie (NSW) and Bass (Tasmania).

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Labor was dealt a massive blow up north, where it suffered a swing of about four percent and failed to pick up any marginal seats.

So far, the ALP appears to hold six seats and the LNP 23,  which clawed back two seats  -- Longman and Herbert -- and held onto all of its marginal seats, including Flynn,  Forde, Dawson and Capricornia.

Labor incumbent Susan Lamb lost the outer-suburban seat of Longman to LNP candidate Terry Young. In Herbert, Labor's Cathy O'Toole lost to the LNP's Philip Thompson with a 7.5 percent swing.

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Federal Member for Dickson Peter Dutton. PHOTO: AAP

In southern QLD, Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton held onto his marginal Brisbane seat of Dickson against Labor's Ali France, and actually increased his margin, despite being heavily targeted by GetUp campaigners.

Singling out the Sunshine state in victory speech, returned PM Scott Morrison shouted, "How good's Queensland!" as his party faithful chanted 'Queensland, Queensland, Queensland' back.

New South Wales

The Coalition went well across a cluster of marginal seats in western Sydney, with a small swing towards them across the state.

Liberal candidates look to have held onto marginal Sydney seats of Reid and Banks, and claimed Lindsay, which had been held by Labor's departing candidate Emma Husar on a slim margin.

With about 82 percent of votes counted, the neighbouring seat of Macquarie remains on a knife-edge. Labor's Susan Templeman is on 50.4 percent of the two-party vote ahead of the Liberal's Sarah Richards.

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The Liberal Party looks likely to win two swinging seats of Bass and Braddon in Tasmania.

On Sunday morning, the Liberals' Bridget Archer sat on 50.3 percent of the two-party preferred in Bass ahead of Labor's Ross Hart.

Gavin Pearce has taken Braddon from Labor incumbent Justine Keay, a year after she won the seat at a by-election.

The results in Tasmania continued a nationwide trend of the Liberals holding their ground and a predicted swing towards Labor not getting off the ground.

Featured image: AAP