Dubbo – NSW 2019

NAT 20.4%

Incumbent MP
Troy Grant, since 2011.

Geography
Central West NSW. The electorate is centred on the city of Dubbo, as well as Narromine, Wellington, Mudgee and Gulgong. Dubbo covers the entirety of the Dubbo, Narromine and Wellington council areas and western parts of the Mid-Western Regional Council area.

History
The electoral district of Dubbo has existed continuously since 1930. For the first three decades it was a marginal seat contested by the ALP and the Country Party. The seat was held by Coalition MPs from 1959 until 1999, by independents from 1999 to 2011, and by the Nationals again since 2011.

A previous district with the name of Dubbo existed from 1894 to 1904. The newly-created seat of Dubbo was won in 1930 by Alfred McClelland of the ALP. He had previously held one of the seats in the multi-member district of Northern Tablelands from 1920 to 1927. In 1927, he lost the single-member district of Armidale.

McClelland lost his seat at the 1932 election. His son Doug served as a senator in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s and was a Whitlam government minister. His grandson Robert served as a minister in the Rudd and Gillard governments.

The Country Party’s George Wilson won Dubbo in 1932. He held the seat until his death in 1942.

At the 1942 by-election, the ALP’s Clarrie Robertson, with the Country Party pushed into third place behind an independent. Robertson had lost Dubbo to Wilson by 159 votes in 1941, and went on to hold the seat until 1950.

In 1950, Robertson lost Dubbo to the Country Party’s Robert Medcalf. Medcalf moved from his former seat of Lachlan, which he had held since 1947.

Robertson defeated Medcalf in 1953, and held it until 1959, when he lost to the Liberal candidate, Dubbo mayor Les Ford. Ford held the seat until his death in 1964.

The 1965 Dubbo by-election was won by Liberal candidate John Mason. He served as a minister in the Coalition state government from 1975 until the government’s defeat in 1976.

Liberal leader Peter Coleman lost his seat at the 1978 election, and Mason was subsequently elected as Leader of the Opposition. He lost the Liberal leadership early in 1981, and retired at that year’s election.

At the 1981 election, the National Country Party’s Gerry Peacocke won the seat. The ALP candidate slightly outpolled Peacocke on primary votes, but Peacocke won the seat comfortably on Liberal preferences.

Peacocke retired at the 1999 election, and later went on to serve as Mayor of Dubbo. Following Peacocke’s retirement, the Nationals lost Dubbo to independent councillor Tony McGrane, who won with a 14-vote margin.

McGrane was re-elected in 2003 with a 55% majority, but died in 2004.

The 2004 by-election was won by independent Dubbo councillor Dawn Fardell, who gained a similar majority to McGrane. Fardell was re-elected in 2007, but with a reduced 0.9% margin.

In 2011, Fardell was defeated solidly by Nationals candidate Troy Grant, with a 14.5% swing.

Grant joined the Coalition ministry in April 2014, as Minister for Hospitality, Gaming and Racing and Minister for the Arts.

In October 2014, Grant was elected as Nationals leader and Deputy Premier, and took on the additional portfolios of Trade and Investment. Grant was re-elected in Dubbo in 2015, and stepped down as Nationals leader in late 2016.

Candidates

  • Dugald Saunders (Nationals)
  • Stephen Lawrence (Labor)

Assessment
Dubbo is a safe Nationals seat.

2015 result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Troy Grant Nationals 28,16560.5+0.3
Stephen Lawrence Labor 10,93923.5+14.0
Matt Parmeter Greens 2,0624.4+0.8
Colin HamiltonIndependent1,9604.2+4.2
Ben ShepherdNo Land Tax1,3062.8+2.8
Peter SchererChristian Democrats1,1812.5+2.5
Rod PryorIndependent9732.1+2.1
Informal1,5783.3

2015 two-party-preferred result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Troy Grant Nationals 29,93270.4-10.9
Stephen Lawrence Labor 12,57129.6+10.9

Booth breakdown

Booths in Dubbo have been split into four parts. The two main cities of Dubbo and Mudgee have been grouped together. The remaining booths have been split into East and West. “East” covers the remaining booths in the Mid-Western and Wellington council areas, while “West” covers the remaining booths in the Dubbo and Narromine council areas.

The Nationals won a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in all four areas, ranging from 61.6% in Mudgee to 75% in the west.

Voter groupNAT 2PP %Total votes% of votes
Dubbo70.513,39228.7
East63.04,70510.1
Mudgee61.63,7278.0
West75.03,5987.7
Other votes71.16,08613.1
Pre-poll73.515,07832.4

Two-party-preferred votes in Dubbo at the 2015 NSW state election

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