By Catherine Watson
FOR election nerds, the contest for the seat of Bass is a thriller with enough clues and red herrings to keep them awake at night.
Ten candidates cover the full electoral spectrum, from the Animal Justice Party and Greens on the left to Family First, the Freedom Party and Labour DLP on the right. (I said it was going to be confusing!)
Battling it out in the middle are the three heavyweights: Jordan Crugnale (Labor), Aaron Brown (Liberal) and Brett Tessari (National), all with a chance of winning.
The seat is currently held by Crugnale, who secured a 7 per swing in 2018 to win the seat for the ALP for the first time since it was created in 2002, with a margin of 1.8 per cent.
Labor has since spent a bucketload of money in the Bass electorate this term and Crugnale would normally be a sure thing, but several factors make it impossible to predict with certainty.
Following an electoral redistribution of Bass that removed largely urban areas of Pakenham and Clyde, the Victorian Electoral Commission now puts the Liberal Party narrowly ahead, 50.6 per cent to Labor’s 49.4 per cent, based on the 2018 votes.
Sportsbet actually has the Coalition as a hot favourite to win Bass back from Labor, offering odds of 3.00 for a Labor win with 1.55 for the Coalition.