With Saturday's election producing Australia's first hung parliament in 70 years, the focus is on the four independent MPs, and the vital question of which way they will swing: Labor, or the Liberal Coalition?

When counting closed at 2.00 am on Sunday, the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) announced Gillard's Labor and the opposition coalition led by Liberal Party's Tony Abott as winning 71 seats each. There were four independent MPs and a Green.

So just who are these 'kingmakers'?

1. Tony Windsor
Seat: New England, northern NSW
Party: Independent
Who: Was a farmer, economist and Nationals politician. He says government stability and broadband are key issues and he is undecided which party he will support.

Tony Windsor from New South Wales said the major issue was stability of governance. Having once held the balance of power in the New South Wales parliament, he sought to reassure the public. "This will be a good parliament - people shouldn't be afraid of it," he said.

Windsor said that in negotiations "we'll all be independent of each other in a sense but there may be an easier way of handling it if we speak together".


2. Rob Oakeshott
Seat: Lyne, NSW
Party: Independent
Who: A former administrative officer at the Road Transport Forum. He is also a former Nationals MP.

Rob Oakeshott, also from New South Wales, said he would look at the best outcome for his electorate and the country

"I think there's a lot of sense in these early days as the dust settles, that we do stand shoulder to shoulder to try and drive some stability outcomes for the next three-year term," Oakeshott was quoted as saying by ABC.


3. Bob Katter
Seat: Kennedy, north Queensland
Party: Independent
Who: He was a labourer and an investor in cattle and mining interests. The former Nationals MP has been an Independent for nine years. He says broadband access is a key issue.

Bob Katter, from Queensland, said: "There is no way that I'm going to give the gong to either side unless I've got an undertaking that we have the right to survive in rural Australia".

Tension flared between the independents and the opposition coalition when Katter accusing a senior Senate Nationals leader of "an act of incredible stupidity" in having "a cheap shot" at Windsor during Saturday's election telecast.

But Katter said he had "worked with people I loathe and detest" when that was necessary for a good outcome.


4. Andrew Wilkie
Seat: Denison, Tasmania
Party: Independent
Who: A former soldier and intelligence analyst who became a whistleblower over the use of intelligence to make the case for the Iraq war. Has previously belonged to the Liberal and Green parties.

Although a former Greens Senate candidate and nominally supportive of Labor, Wilkie said he would back the party best able to provide stable, competent and ethical government.


5. Adam Bandt
Seat: Melbourne, Victoria
Party: Greens
Who: A former industrial barrister who took retiring Labor Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner's seat. It's the Greens' first Lower House seat won at a general election. Bandt says he's inclined to support Labor.

- NZHERALD STAFF, Agencies