An upbeat Dave Sharma has hugged his family before casting his vote in a bid to reclaim the formerly blue-ribbon seat of Wentworth in NSW.
The Liberal candidate was all smiles as he arrived at Paddington Public School with his wife and two girls, joining a long line of voters on Saturday morning.
He says he won’t take anything for granted and would be campaigning hard to oust independent MP Kerryn Phelps until booths close at 6pm.
“It’s going to be a close race here I think, every vote will count so I’m just going to vote myself here,” he told reporters.
Mr Sharma believes voter anger has subsided after the “traumatic” dumping of then-prime minister Malcolm Turnbull.
The August knifing triggered a by-election which saw Dr Phelps wrestle Wentworth from the Liberals.
“There was definitely a noticeable mood of anger and resentment in the electorate last time towards the Liberals, towards us as a party, because of the leadership instability and the turmoil,” Mr Sharma told AAP ahead of the election.
“(But) some of that feeling has dissipated, as you would expect.”