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Preferences from Independent candidates will be a crucial factor in tomorrow’s federal election, with polls indicating an ever-tighter contest.

A new Ipsos poll showed Labor’s primary vote had dropped five percentage points in 12 days to 36 per cent, while the Coalition’s had jumped three points to 35 per cent.

Scott Morrison said the “quiet Australians” could deliver another Coalition victory but former Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said the headline-grabbing “teal Independents” were likely to play a key part in determining the make-up of the next government.

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Independent-supporting voters could be crucial to the election. (AP)

Bishop said both parties still had a “mammoth task ahead of them”, noting Labor is still “haunted” by Bill Shorten’s 2019 loss despite a lead in the polls.

“Many of the local members on both sides, Labor and Liberal, are under challenge from independents,” she told Today.

“Labor have to win at least seven seats, hold everything they’ve currently got … the Coalition has to hold all it has and pick up a couple off Labor.

“So it’s not going to be easy.”

Bishop also said her home state of Western Australia will likely play a major role in deciding who wins.

“It has been a Coalition stronghold … but there are a number in play, and Swan is one, because the very high-profile local member Steve Irons for the Liberals, he is retiring and Labor see that as a potential pick-up.

Former Liberal foreign minister Julie Bishop says independents could play an integral role in forming government. (Nine)

She said her former seat in Curtain was also a vulnerable target for other parties in WA.

“This is where the preferences are going to be so important.

“If a sitting member can’t get at least 50 per cent, then of course, preferences are distributed … So that’s how independents can win.”

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