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New South Wales state election, 1991: Map


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Legislative Assembly election, 1991
Party Vote % Seats
Liberal 34.2 ↓1.7 32 ↓7
National 10.5 ↓3.2 17 ↓3
Labor 39.1 ↑0.6 46 ↑3
Independents 4 ↓3
Hung Parliament
Elections to the 50th Parliamentmarker of New South Walesmarker were held on Saturday, May 25 1991. All seats in the Legislative Assembly and half the seats in the Legislative Council were up for election. The result was a hung parliament, a surprise given the large majority the incumbent Liberal-National Coalition government had enjoyed since 1988.

Hung parliament

The 1991 general election resulted in an unexpected hung parliament.

A hung parliament is said to occur when no party can command an absolute majority of the seats in the lower house. Although the Governor may still appoint the leader of the largest party premier, that premier's government will be vulnerable to a vote of no confidence at any time. A hung parliament must be resolved by creating an ad-hoc coalition including minor parties and independents, or calling a new election.

To add to the woes of incumbent premier Nick Greiner, the Court of Disputed Returns ordered a by-election in the Electoral district of The Entrance, which the Liberals lost.

In order to keep office, Greiner was forced to sign a "Memorandum of Understanding" with three independent MPs, Clover Moore (Bligh), Peter MacDonald (Manly) and John Hatton (South Coast). The MoU was signed on October 31 1991.

Later, in 1992, the independents forced Greiner to resign in the wake of a corruption scandal. He was replaced by John Fahey.

Australian Labor Party leader Bob Carr, his position bolstered by his party's unexpectedly strong showing, remained opposition leader, going on to win in 1995.

Electoral system

Elections to the New South Wales Legislative Assembly were conducted using Instant run-off voting, a form of preferential voting. Greiner had cut the number of lower house seats from 109 to 99 for the 1991 election, reversing an increase approved by the Unsworth Labor government.



  1. Groups winning seats shown.
  2. Share of Legislative Assembly first-preference votes, and change since last election, shown.
  3. Change since last general election shown, ignoring by-election results, if any. Legislative Assembly size reduced from 109 to 99 at this election.


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