Zali Steggall was the first of the teal independents to win her seat, retaining Warringah, followed by Allegra Spender winning the seat of Wentworth for the first time a couple of hours later.
Later, Zoe Daniel took the seat of Goldstein.
And around 10pm, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg gave what sounded a lot like a concession speech — although said the race against Dr Monique Ryan was still tight enough to go to postal votes.
Late in the night, as it became clear Anthony Albanese would be the next prime minister of Australia — but not yet clear if he’d lead with a majority.
Dr Sophie Scamps took the seat of MacKellar from Jason Fallinski.
Kylea Tink won North Sydney from Trent Zimmerman.
And there were more seats expected to go to women running as independents.
In one swoop, a handful of women took seats from Liberal men — following the lead of Steggall, who did so in 2019, when she won the Northern Beaches seat from Tony Abbott.
Overall, the number of female MPs in the lower house looks set to rise dramatically following this election.
Across metropolitan seats in Melbourne and Sydney, there have been huge swings against the Coalition towards Teal independent candidates, with analysts citing “professional women” as a powerful voting cohort protesting the Coalition government.
The vote went a different way in Queensland, where there was a significant swing to The Greens — which again will see more women joining the lower house.
Overall, the vote was mixed across the country, with Australians turning away from the two major parties in ways not seen before.
Zali Steggall said during her victory speech that: “We have shown that politics can be about positive policies, it can be about positive change.”
In these seats where women are turning the vote, the policy priority areas appear to be climate change, integrity in politics and equality.
Climate change came up as the number one area Women’s Agenda readers wanted to see prioritised during the election campaign. That result was repeated across multiple polls and surveys, including the ABC’s Vote Compass.
Meanwhile, the Coalition will be doing much reflection following this election.
“Gender clearly is a factor in this,” the LNP’s Simon Birmingham told the ABC.
“Is it time to start preselecting more women? Absolutely That is a very clear message that the electorate is sending us, but we can’t just say that preselecting more women is sufficient.”