The 2022 federal election has been run and won, but the result arguably raises more questions than it provides answers.
What we know is that Labor has ended nine years of Coalition rule and Anthony Albanese is set to be sworn in as Australia's 31st prime minister.
We do not yet know whether Labor will be able to govern in its own right, or whether it will need support from the crossbench to form a minority government.
With about two-thirds of the vote counted when counting stopped last night, Labor had secured 73 seats - just shy of the 76 needed for a majority.
There are still about 10 seats considered too close to call, but many analysts seem to think Labor could eke out the three seats needed to form majority government.
But while Labor will form government in some form, it will do so off the back of a desperately low primary vote - about 32 per cent compared to the Coalition's 36 per cent - that indicates a seismic shift in the way Australians vote.
With up to 10 independents, including as many as six Teal independents, and potentially three Greens to sit in the lower house, this will be the largest crossbench in Australian political history.
Does this represent a permanent change in this country's voting habits, or is it simply a warning that the Coalition and Labor must correct course to re-engage the disillusioned?
There is no doubt the success of the Teal independents was a repudiation of the Liberal party's inaction on two key issues - climate change and a federal ICAC, while its unpopularity with women clearly did not help either.
How will the Liberal party ever reclaim the seats it lost to climate conscious independents in the inner city electorates of Sydney and Melbourne, while simultaneously appeasing the climate sceptics in the Nationals?
It seems an impossible situation for the new Liberal leader - most likely Peter Dutton after Scott Morrison announced he will step down - to negotiate, especially if Barnaby Joyce remains leader of the Nationals.
We know that Michael McCormack has comfortably won the seat of Riverina for a fifth time, despite experiencing a near 13 per cent drop in his primary vote.
Mr McCormack attributed the swing away from him to the increased number of candidates contesting the seat at this election - eight stood this time compared to just four in 2019 - and not to any discontent over his performance.
It is an entirely plausible explanation, but one we will never get a definitive answer on.
What we do know is that 13 per cent swing went to candidates representing right-wing parties One Nation, Liberal Democrats, Shooters, Fishers and Farmers and the UAP - not to Labor or the Greens.
So, Mr McCormack will continue as the Riverina's MP - and has promised to serve a full term - but in opposition for the first time since his first term in the parliament.
Finally, the great unknown remains what sort of Labor government under Prime Minister Anthony Albanese we will see.
Labor ran such a small target campaign that it is not clear what its vision is for the next three years.
The small target campaign worked - but barely. Despite the widespread anti-Liberal sentiment across so much of the country, only about 3 per cent of that went Labor's way - and that figure is significantly boosted by the results in Western Australia.
Now he is in power, Mr Albanese will need to prove to the nation that he is more than just not Scott Morrison.
All the best for the week ahead,
Ross Tyson, editor
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