Victorian Opposition Leader and Leader of the Victorian Liberal Party, Matthew Guy, has conceded defeat to Leader of the Victorian Labor Party, Premier Daniel Andrews.
He described the evening as a "disappointing night," and called Mr. Andrews around 10:45pm offering his congratulations. Mr. Guy remained optimistic regarding final results, suggesting that the Victorian Liberal Party is yet to see further seats to come in:
“What we can see is that with a swing of around four per cent to us and many pre-poll votes to come, we will finish … with more seats in the parliament in both the lower house and the upper house.
The loss for the Victorian Liberal Party was worse than pundits had expected, with some predicting a minority Labor government. After first initiating his election campaign on a theme of public integrity and transparency, Mr. Guy's later press conferences were fraught with questions regarding the Victorian Electoral Commission's (VEC) inquiry into both Mr. Guy and Mitch Catlin and a potential breach of Victoria's funding and disclosure laws, which was eventually passed on to the Independent Broad-based Anti-Corruption Commission (IBAC) for further investigation.
This is the second time the opposition leader has conceded defeat in a Victorian election, having led the party also in the 2018 state election. It has been reported that "many" in the Liberal Party view John Pesutto as a potential to take on the leadership of the Victorian Liberal Party. At time of writing, Mr. Guy has yet to comment on his future as leader of the party.
Former Liberal Strategist and political pollster, Tony Barry, stated that the Victorian Liberal Party had "gone backwards in an election environment where we should have picked up at least 10 seats on a bad night". Mr. Barry connected the loss to the party suffering from "brand damage" with certain demographics including young professional women and Asian Australians:
He said the party had suffered brand damage with cohorts such as young professional women:
"I notice in the seats that have got a concentration of Asian voters — Box Hill, Ashwood, Glen Waverley — this is the killing fields for us."
Mr. Barry also described the Liberal party room as "beginning to look a little bit like Jonestown" and suspected that "we'll keep on drinking the Kool aid next term as well."