Reid, in Sydney’s inner west, is one example. It was a marginal Liberal-held seat but one that Labor should have been able to seize.
Its candidate, Sam Crosby, had been on the ground campaigning for more than a year while his Liberal opponent, Fiona Martin, was only pre-selected last month when Craig Laundy pulled out.
Laundy, a key ally of Turnbull’s, was a popular local member and there were fears that his last minute decision to quit politics would hurt their chances in the diverse electorate.
Martin, a child psychologist, was a strong campaigner and her inexperience did not hold her back.
On the back of a historic state election win, the Coalition hoped that the strength of the Liberal brand in the NSW would help save the furniture. It did more than that.
In NSW, voters backed in a stable and united state government by returning Gladys Berejiklian’s team to power in March.
Two months later, it managed to ensure Labor’s poor showing in the state election was replicated in the federal poll.
The Coalition will pick up at least two seats from Labor. The only outlier is Warringah.
Barrister and former Olympian Zali Steggall has achieved the upset of the election by ending former prime minister Tony Abbott’s two decades in parliament.
Warringah was the most talked about seat in the campaign and early into the count it was clear that Abbott was facing a huge swing against him. The trend continued as more booths were counted.
Within an hour of the polls closing in the eastern states, reports were coming out of the Steggall camp that the champagne corks were already popping. Her win is momentous.
Across the harbour, in the city’s equally well-heeled eastern suburbs, there was another battle underway between an independent and a Liberal.
The Liberals are expected to make a comeback in Malcolm Turnbull’s former seat of Wentworth, which was won by Kerryn Phelps in a byelection just seven months ago.
Phelps is a high-profile doctor and campaigner on social issues, most recently in the same-sex marriage debate. Her win, just like Steggall’s, was seen as momentous in October.
Senior Liberals were on Saturday night maintaining it was «still too close to call» and the Phelps’ camp was cautious. «It would be an amazing win,» a source close to Phelps said as the vote continued.
But Dave Sharma is ahead and likely to be the next member for Wentworth.
Just like Reid, Lindsay should also have been an achievable win for Labor.
Instead, in western Sydney, the Liberals were on track to take Lindsay from Labor. In what was once Labor heartland, the Liberals have moved in. They did it in the state election, when the party also retained the state seat of Penrith in March.
The only seat that bucked the trend for the Liberals in NSW was Gilmore, which Labor will win.
Two of the three south coast state MPs whose seats cover the Gilmore electorate secured swings to them in the state election. But voters felt differently when it came to the federal choice.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison hand-picked Warren Mundine to run in the seat after Ann Sudmalis quit parliament citing «bullying, betrayal and backstabbing» from her colleagues as a reason.
But parachuting in a candidate proved to be a wrong move, and Labor’s Fiona Phillips will win the seat.
While brand Liberal has clearly held up in NSW, questions will be asked about whether Labor’s performance in the state election had contributed to their fortunes federally.
Ironically, NSW Labor held off electing a new leader to replace Michael Daley until after the federal election to ensure they were not an unwelcome distraction to Bill Shorten.
Instead, the party will now be looking for new state and federal leaders.
Alexandra Smith is the State Political Editor of The Sydney Morning Herald.