Election guide Archive

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Key seats in the Queensland election

The 2015 Queensland election was very close, with neither party winning a majority of seats. Labor is estimated to hold 48 seats, while the LNP holds 42 seats. There are two Katter’s Australian Party seat, and one independent seat. 47 seats are needed for a majority.

Recent polling has been very close, with both Labor and LNP winning polls. This suggests that either side has the potential to gain seats, and lose other seats. In addition there are numerous seats where other parties could be a factor: independents, the Greens, One Nation and Katter’s Australian Party.

Labor-LNP marginals

There are nineteen Labor seats with a margin against the LNP under 6%.

There are four Labor seats on the north side of Brisbane with margins of less than 6%: from the city centre northward these are McConnel, Cooper, Ferny Grove and Pine Rivers.

There are also seven marginal Labor seats in southern Brisbane and Logan: Mount Ommaney, Miller, Greenslopes, Mansfield, Stretton, Springwood and Logan.

In central Queensland, heading north, the Labor marginal seats are Maryborough, Bundaberg, Keppel and Mirani.

Labor has five marginal seats in north Queensland: three around Townsville (Burdekin, Townsville and Mundingburra) and the Cairns-area seat of Barron River.

LNP-Labor marginals

There are eighteen LNP seats with a margin against Labor under 6%.

There are four LNP marginal seats in the City of Brisbane: Aspley, Chatsworth, Everton and Maiwar.

There are six marginal LNP seats on the Gold Coast: Bonney, Burleigh, Coomera, Currumbin, Gaven and Theodore.

The LNP is defending two seats in the Redland council area: (Oodgeroo and Redlands) and three on the Sunshine Coast (Caloundra, Glass House and Pumicestone).

There are three LNP marginal seats vulnerable to Labor further afield: Hinchinbrook, Whitsunday and Toowoomba North.

Katter’s Australian Party seats

Katter’s Australian Party holds two seats. Traeger is very safe, but the seat of Hill will be in play against the LNP.

Independent seats

Sitting independent MP Peter Wellington is retiring in Nicklin, and that seat is not likely to be in play. There are two sitting independent MPs who won seats in 2015 as Labor candidates, and they will be facing an uphill battle to win, against either Labor or the LNP. These two seats are Cairns and Cook, both in far north Queensland.

One Nation seats

Since One Nation were not a major player in the 2015 state election, it is not simple to determine where One Nation might stand a chance. I’ve considered their chances in a previous post.

One Nation state leader Steve Dickson holds the Sunshine Coast seat of Buderim, which he won in 2015 as an LNP candidate. One Nation also came close to winning the seat of Lockyer in 2015, and did well in that area at the 2016 federal election.

Some other prospects for the party include the Labor seats of Mirani, Maryborough and Burdekin, and the LNP seats of Hinchinbrook, Callide, Gregory, Burnett and Nanango.

Greens seats

The Greens do not hold any seats in Queensland but there are a small number of seats which have strong Greens votes and could potentially be vulnerable to the party.

There are three seats in inner Brisbane where the party has polled well. The party has previously targetted or held the two seats merged to make up Maiwar, and currently holds the Brisbane City ward which overlaps with South Brisbane, and has also done well in McConnel.

The Greens came second in Noosa in 2015, and generally do well in this area at state elections.

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Queensland election guide – redistribution summary

Queensland has recently undergone a redistribution of state electoral boundaries, the first in almost a decade. The existing boundaries were used at three elections: 2009, 2012 and 2015.

The number of seats was increased from 89 to 93. This resulted in the creation of five new electorates, with two seats merged.

The inner-city electorates of Indooroopilly and Mount Coot-tha were merged into the new seat of Maiwar. Maiwar is a marginal LNP seat, with a margin of 3%.

Five new seats were created:

  • Bancroft – Labor seat on the northern fringe of Brisbane, with an 8.3% margin.
  • Bonney – marginal LNP seat on the Gold Coast, with a 2.2% margin.
  • Jordan – safe Labor seat at the eastern edge of Ipswich, with a 13.5% margin.
  • MacAlister – Labor seat in the north-east of Logan, with a 6.4% margin.
  • Ninderry – LNP seat on the Sunshine Coast, with a 6.9% margin.

Eleven other electorates have changed their name.

Former name New name
Ashgrove Cooper
Dalrymple Hill
Kallangur Kurwongbah
Indooroopilly Maiwar
Brisbane Central McConnel
Yeerongpilly Miller
Cleveland Oodgeroo
Beaudesert Scenic Rim
Albert Theodore
Sunnybank Toohey
Mount Isa Traeger

The last Queensland state election produced a result of 44 Labor, 42 Liberal National, 2 Katter’s Australian Party and 1 independent.

Antony Green’s redistribution estimate (which I will discuss further below) produces a result of 48 Labor seats, 42 Liberal National seats, 2 Katter’s Australian Party and 1 independent. Two of those Labor seats are now held by independent MPs elected in 2015 as Labor candidates, and one of those LNP seats is now held by a One Nation MP, elected representing the LNP.

Notes on redistribution calculations

I have produced my own estimates of the impact of the redistribution on each electorate. I have produced my own estimates as part of the process of breaking each electorate into sub-areas.

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Projecting One Nation’s vote in the QLD election

In the process of putting together my guide to the Queensland election, I had to consider how to handle the potential vote for One Nation, who have polled as highly as 23% earlier this year and were sitting on 15% in the most recent poll. Normally I assess a seat’s vulnerability based on its margin, but a new party polling 15% is likely to upset the apple-cart, threatening seats which look very safe on paper.

One Nation haven’t been a significant statewide player in Queensland state elections since 2001, so the best source of information comes from the 2016 federal election – specifically the Senate, as One Nation only ran in a handful of House of Representatives seats.

Thankfully Alex Jago has done the work taking those results and converting them into the new Queensland state electorates using AEC data about where people from a particular SA1 vote. He’s then taken those votes and distributed preferences amongst Labor, the LNP, the Greens and One Nation.

After distributing those preferences, One Nation is left with about 15% of the statewide vote – about the same as their latest polling.

For now I won’t bother trying to project how these votes would shift based on differing polling (for a start, the LNP vote was higher and Labor’s vote lower in 2016 compared to the latest polling), but I’ll just list those seats which have the highest One Nation vote according to Jago’s model. I will be referencing this analysis in my profiles of seats with a high One Nation vote.

The following table lists the twenty seats with the highest One Nation vote, and the rank that One Nation came out of Labor, the LNP, the Greens and One Nation. In nine of these seats, One Nation outpolled one of the major parties last year.

Kevin Bonham has also written about this same dataset, and put some more thought into how these votes might play out in an election. In short, a lot will depend on how close One Nation is to the leading candidate, and whether they are competing with Labor or the LNP (and thus which parties’ preferences will decide the result).

The introduction of compulsory preferences will also complicate things. Preference flows will definitely change, but it’s hard to say how exactly. The new One Nation only made it into the top two in one seat at last year’s federal election, so we don’t know how to predict how strongly Labor or LNP preferences would flow to One Nation. If they receive a poor preference flow, it’s possible they could make it to the top two in many seats and only win a few. One Nation did reasonably well with preferences at last year’s Senate election, so it’s not safe to assume that they would receive poor preference flows.

Seat Margin ON Senate vote ON rank
Lockyer LNP vs ON 1.6% 32.0% 2
Traeger KAP vs LNP 16.1% 28.4% 3
Mirani ALP 3.8% 27.1% 3
Hinchinbrook LNP 3.4% 26.7% 3
Callide LNP 9.8% 26.3% 2
Gregory LNP 10.9% 25.8% 2
Burnett LNP 6.6% 25.7% 3
Hill KAP vs LNP 4.9% 25.5% 2
Maryborough ALP 1.1% 25.4% 3
Nanango LNP 13.3% 25.3% 2
Gympie LNP 7.6% 25.3% 2
Warrego LNP 14.5% 24.3% 2
Condamine LNP 17.1% 24.2% 2
Hervey Bay LNP 6.5% 24.2% 3
Burdekin ALP 1.4% 24.1% 3
Gladstone ALP 25.3% 24.0% 3
Bundaberg ALP 0.5% 23.9% 3
Thuringowa ALP 6.6% 23.4% 3
Southern Downs LNP 19.2% 22.9% 2
Scenic Rim LNP 9.2% 22.6% 3
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Read the guide to the 2017 WA state election

Voters in Western Australia go to the polls on March 11 for their state election.

I have published a complete guide to all of the races in that election: all 59 seats in the Legislative Assembly, and the 36 seats to be elected to represent six regions in the Legislative Council.

The Liberal-National government is running for a third term in power, but has a fight on its hands, with recent polls putting Labor in the lead.

Labor needs to gain ten seats to win a majority in the lower house, and current polls suggest this outcome is likely.

This election will be the first test of the revived One Nation party since their surprise victories in last year’s federal election. They could well be a threat in regional seats, and have a good chance at winning seats in the upper house, which is heavily slanted towards representing rural areas.

Each seat guide includes a list of candidates (which will be occasionally updated until nominations close next week), descriptions of the seat’s geography, a short history section, the results of the last election, including breakdowns of those results into subdivisions, and maps showing those results. As always, there is a comment section on each seat guide.

Read the Tally Room guide to the WA state election here.

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Election guide update

Three more seat profiles have now been completed for the three most marginal Liberal seats:

I have also included a little box in the top right hand corner of the website where links are provided to the most recently written seat guides. Keep an eye on the box for new seat guides. Next up is Macarthur.

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Profiles of key Adelaide seats

I’m still slowly making my way through writing my guide to the federal election. I have now finished 13 House of Representatives seat guides, with the latest being the four most marginal seats in Adelaide: Boothby, Hindmarsh, Kingston and Sturt.

Now that redistributions have concluded in New South Wales and Queensland, I will start working from the top of the pendulum, starting with supermarginal Bowman, in order to ensure that marginal seats are finished in case an early election is called. It’s quite time-consuming to write these guides so I’m prioritising the more interesting seats. So keep an eye out on the pendulum page for new guides to be posted.