Leichhardt – Australia 2016

LNP 5.7%

Incumbent MP
Warren Entsch, since 2010. Previously Member for Leichhardt 1996-2007.

Far North Queensland. Leichhardt covers the Cape York Peninsula and the east coast of Australia as far south as Cairns. While the seat covers a vast area, most of the population is in the area around Cairns.

Leichhardt was first created at the 1949 election. Apart from the 2010 election, the seat has been won by the party of government at every election since 1972.

The seat was first won in 1949 by Tom Gilmore of the Country Party, who was defeated by the ALP’s Henry Bruce in 1951. Bruce held the seat until his death shortly before the 1958 election, when he was succeeded by Bill Fulton.

Fulton held the seat until his retirement at the 1975 election. David Thomson won the seat for the National Country Party in 1975, and served as a minister in the Fraser government from 1979 until his defeat at the 1983 election, when John Gayler (ALP) won the seat.

Gaylor held the seat until his retirement in 1993, and the ALP’s Peter Dodd held the seat for one term before he was defeated by Warren Entsch (LIB) in 1996.

Entsch held the seat for eleven years before retiring in 2007, when a swing of over 14% gave the seat to the ALP’s Jim Turnour.

In 2010, Entsch returned to politics and won his seat back off Turnour with a swing of 8.6%, and he was re-elected again in 2013.


Leichhardt is a marginal seat, but Labor has only managed to win the seat in recent history when Entsch retired in 2007 – they will need a strong campaign to challenge his hold on the seat.


  • 52% to LNP – Galaxy commissioned by Cairns Post, 13 May 2016

2013 result

Warren Entsch Liberal National 38,79545.3-2.1
Billy Gordon Labor 27,92032.6-2.1
Bruce GibsonPalmer United Party7,3268.6+8.6
Johanna Kloot Greens 5,6466.6-2.5
George RyanKatter’s Australian Party3,6774.3+4.3
Frank MilesFamily First1,8762.2+0.4
Dale EdwardsRise Up Australia4760.6+0.6

2013 two-party-preferred result

Warren Entsch Liberal National 47,72555.7+1.1
Billy Gordon Labor 37,99144.3-1.1

Booth breakdown
Booths have been divided into five areas. Polling places in the Cairns council area have been split into north, central and south Cairns. Polling places in the Douglas council area have been grouped, and the remainder have been grouped as Cape York. Most of the population is in Cairns.

The Liberal National Party won majorities ranging from 52% in Central Cairns to 58.2% in Douglas, while Labor won a 61% majority in Cape York.

The Palmer United Party’s vote ranged from 8.3% in Central Cairns and Douglas to 10.2% in South Cairns.

Voter groupPUP %LNP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
North Cairns8.755.915,31617.9
Central Cairns8.352.414,69217.1
South Cairns10.254.211,30113.2
Cape York9.638.95,7746.7
Other votes7.960.034,81740.6
Two-party-preferred votes in Leichhardt at the 2013 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in Leichhardt at the 2013 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in areas surrounding Cairns at the 2013 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in areas surrounding Cairns at the 2013 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in Cairns at the 2013 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in Cairns at the 2013 federal election.


  1. So long as Entsch stays I cannot imagine this seat falling. He is extremely popular on the ground.

  2. W of S
    Yeah Entsch speaks the N QLD lingo !!!. The only part of Australia with their own accent !!!!.

  3. It’s interesting that the 2PP margin in Leichhardt is a long way short of the stratospheric 60-40 it was last time there was a Coalition government.

  4. Entsch is one of the few Liberals I genuinely like. The people of Leichardt seem to agree, and as such Labor’s best chance is when he retires. LNP retain.

  5. GG
    Entsch also seems to have real talent in upsetting his leader. MT ought to remember the famous LBJ quote about J Edgar Hoover. “Ahd rather that there dog on the inside a pissin out, than the outside a pissin in “!!!!. Big Bob (Katter ) surely must serve as some kind reminder, or warning !!!!.

  6. Pyne is a character who splits opinion. I don’t think his endorse my helps. It has no impact at all.

    All the focus on Herbert has meant little attention has been paid here. I am going to chat to my Cairns sources, but I think it using play.

  7. My prediction would be that Entsch shouldn’t be re-elected despite being a rarity – a Liberal with a modicum of a social conscience.

  8. I’m looking for a candidate that’s has 100% support for free enterprise less regulation and Government interference with people’s freedoms, I guess that might be the Greens, can anyone suggest to me otherwise

  9. The indy Daniel McCarthy seems to have quite a bit of signage around, including a large billboard on the main drag in Cairns. He must have a few donors on board?

  10. McCarthy had some business connections and friends in the LNP membership. Possibly could get a solid vote in Cairns.

  11. It’s worth noting that Warren Entsch didn’t lose his seat – he announced his retirement well before the 2007 poll that saw Jim Tournour installed temporarily. The easiest way to judge the value of a parliamentarian’s personal popularity is to compare their primary vote to support their party achieved in the Senate.


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