Ms Deves was the captain’s pick of outgoing Prime Minister Scott Morrison in the formerly safe Liberal seat and quickly became known for past controversial comments she had made about transgender people.
This was even lower than the first preference vote of 39 per cent gained in 2019 (down from 51.5 per cent in 2016) by Tony Abbott, who held the seat for 25 years until his high-profile defeat to Ms Steggall.
“I fear that the impact in Warringah may have had something of a contagion effect on candidates in adjacent Liberal seats that actually do hold the right values who may be paying a very dear price for that seat.”
“We have to ensure that people understand the party appreciates those values,” he said.
A rebuke of division and a vote for inclusion, activists say
“Hopefully now we can have meaningful and well-informed conversations about the health and wellbeing needs of all trans and gender diverse people to improve their lives.”
“But tonight’s result — particularly in Warringah — is a stunning rebuke of the politics of division, and another affirmation that the vast majority of the Australian community believes that every one of us, no matter who we are, whom we love, deserves to be treated with dignity and respect.”
“A wave of community independents has washed away complacent party politics, and now a record number of capable, smart and compassionate women are sitting at that table. A caring, collaborative, community crossbench is our new reality – and it is truly phenomenal,” she said.