Ted O'Brien, the LNP candidate for the Sunshine Coast seat of Fairfax.
Ted O'Brien, the LNP candidate for the Sunshine Coast seat of Fairfax. Richard Bruinsma

Fairfax re-count nears end with result likely midweek

ONLY six polling places and about 15,500 absent, postal and pre-poll ballots remain to be counted in one of the longest election counts in Australian political history.

Yesterday afternoon Clive Palmer was 67 ahead of LNP rival Ted O'Brien. He has been ahead of Mr O'Brien since distribution of two-party preferred preferences on election night, September 7.

Four polling places, Mudjimba, Nambour West, North Arm and Palmwoods (Fairfax), were re-counted in Maroochydore yesterday and results added into the Virtual Tally Room.

As of close of business on Thursday night, the Australian electoral officer Qld, Ann Bright, had made decisions on 34,000 of the nearly 44,000 challenged ballot papers referred to her.

Ms Bright will continue to rule on challenged ballots today leaving fewer than 10,000 challenged votes to be determined from Monday.

It should be all done sometime during the week.

Votes will continue to be progressively returned from Brisbane to the Maroochydore counting centre which will resume recounting Monday and well into next week.

Regardless of the outcome, the result is expected to be fiercely contested in the courts.

If Mr Palmer wins, as expected, the LNP is expected to challenge the result.

Mr Palmer has vowed to take the case to the High Court, if necessary, meaning the outcome come be in limbo for months.



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