Maryborough – QLD 2017

ALP 1.1%

Incumbent MP
Bruce Saunders, since 2015.

Central Queensland. Maryborough covers most of Fraser Coast Regional Council, as well as a small part of Gympie LGA. A majority of the population lives in the Maryborough urban area.

Maryborough shifted north, gaining coastal areas from Hervey Bay and losing rural areas on its southern border to Gympie. These changes cut the Labor margin from 1.65% to 1%.

The seat of Maryborough has existed continuously since 1865. The seat was dominated by the ALP for most of the twentieth century but has been dominated by independents from the late 1990s until 2012.

The ALP had held Maryborough continuously from 1932 until 1971, when the seat was lost to the Liberal Party’s Gilbert Alison.

Alison held the seat until his defeat in 1977 by the ALP’s Brendan Hanson.

Hansen served two terms before losing to Alison, who was now running in 1983 as a National Party candidate.

Alison held the seat for two more terms, serving briefly as a minister in the Cooper government in late 1989 before losing his seat in 1989.

The seat was held from 1989 to 1998 by the ALP’s Bob Dollin.

Dollin lost in 1998 to One Nation’s John Kingston. Kingston quit One Nation in 1999 but managed to win re-election in 2001 as an independent. He retired in 2003 citing poor health.

The 2003 Maryborough by-election was won by another independent candidate, Chris Foley. Foley was re-elected in 2004, 2006 and 2009.

In 2012, Foley was defeated by LNP candidate Anne Maddern. Maddern lost to Labor’s Bruce Saunders in 2015.


Maryborough is a very close seat. One Nation polled over 25% in this seat in last year’s federal election, so the race could end up as a three-cornered contest.

2015 election result

Anne Maddern Liberal National 9,70230.6-5.231.8
Bruce Saunders Labor 8,03125.3+13.525.8
Chris FoleyIndependent6,74921.3-8.920.1
Stephen AndersonPalmer United Party3,93112.4+12.412.0
Damian HuxhamOne Nation2,2177.0+7.06.5
Katherine Webb Greens 8132.6-0.22.5
Russell WattieIndependent3091.0+1.00.9
Family First0.2

2015 two-party-preferred result

Bruce Saunders Labor 12,72351.7+2.051.1
Anne Maddern Liberal National 11,91048.3-2.048.9

Booth breakdown

Booths in Maryborough have been divided into three parts. A majority of ordinary votes were cast in the Maryborough urban area, and these booths have been grouped together. The remainder was split between booths to the north of Maryborough and those to the south.

Labor won a sizeable 56% majority of the two-party-preferred vote in the Maryborough area, while the LNP won a 51% majority in the south and a 54% majority in the north.

Former independent MP Chris Foley ran in third place. The primary vote for independent candidates (most of those votes for Foley) ranged from 15% in the north to 26.5% in Maryborough.

Voter groupIND prim %ALP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
Other votes19.549.212,03439.5

Election results in Maryborough at the 2015 QLD state election
Click on the ‘visible layers’ box to toggle between two-party-preferred votes and independent primary votes.

About the Author

Ben Raue is the founder and author of the Tally Room.

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