QLD 2020 – mapping the results


There hasn’t been a great deal of time to dive into the results, but I’ve grabbed the seat-level votes and swings as of this morning.

I’ve put together a couple of maps showing the primary vote swings for the Greens and One Nation, and the two-party-preferred swings. I’ve also grouped seats by region to get a sense of the geography of the result.

Firstly, let’s look at the two-party-preferred vote. I’ve grouped seats into seven regions. Brisbane, the Gold Coast, the Sunshine Coast, the remainder of south-east Queensland, Central Queensland, Northern and Western Queensland, and the regional cities (including Cairns, Townsville, Bundaberg, Mackay, Rockhampton and Toowoomba).

There are only 69 out of 93 seats where we have a valid two-party-preferred swing comparison between 2017 and 2020. The remainder either feature a minor party or independent in the count in 2017 or 2020, or the count is still very early. Thanks to William Bowe at Poll Bludger for the data I used for this section.

RegionSeatsSwing to ALP
Central Queensland54.0
Gold Coast111.5
Regional cities101.8
Sunshine Coast84.0
Western and Northern Queensland2-4.9

At the moment the count is much less progressed in the Ipswich-area seats for some reason, and One Nation came second in 2017 in some of these seats, so none of them are included in this table or the subsequent map.

The biggest swing to Labor was on the Sunshine Coast, which fits with the seats which have either fallen or are at risk of falling: Caloundra, Nicklin, Glass House and Pumicestone. The result was not as strong on the Gold Coast.

The Greater Brisbane area was relatively good for Labor, but there just aren’t that many LNP marginals to win there. They may win Chatsworth.

Despite early results suggesting Labor could lose seats in the Townsville and Cairns area, they gained an overall swing in these seats and look set to hold all of the seats they already held on the coast.

The following map shows the swings for those 69 seats. You can click on a seat to see the 2PP vote and swing for the two major parties. Sorry, the pop-ups haven’t been cleaned up to look nicer, this was a quick job.

Next let’s look at the primary vote swings, particularly for the larger minor parties.

This table uses the same regions, although it shows all 93 seats. The primary count is more complete, and we don’t have as much of an issue with comparison (although ON did not run in every seat in either 2017 or 2020).

RegionALPLNPONGRNALP swingLNP swingON swingGRN swing
Central Queensland41.933.413.
Gold Coast34.
Regional cities41.336.17.46.376.2-11.5-0.8
South East Queensland38.536.613.
Sunshine Coast31.641.
Western and Northern Queensland27.

The Labor primary vote went up everywhere. It went up the most in central Queensland, regional parts of south-east Queensland, the Sunshine Coast and the regional cities. They are also some of the places where One Nation did best in 2017.

The LNP primary vote went up substantially in the regions but actually went down in Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

The One Nation vote crashed everywhere, and it tended to crash the most in the places where they were strongest.

I find the Greens swings the most interesting. The Greens vote went down in every region in the state. Yet they gained a seat and are in with a (small) chance in two others. They also gained large swings in a number of surrounding seats. This is where the next map comes in handy.

This shows the primary vote swings for the Greens. Green shades mean it went up. Yellow means it went down. The map can also be toggled to show the One Nation primary vote swings in seats where they ran in both 2017 and 2020.

The Greens did gain swings in a block of five contiguous seats in central Brisbane: Maiwar, McConnel, Cooper, South Brisbane and Greenslopes. They did also gain swings in some other seats. But these core seats are alone in a sea of anti-Greens swings.

I’m not trying to spin a story about this election being a bad result for the Greens. Gaining extra seats is definitely a good result, but it’s interesting to see how that vote has concentrated.

It’s also possible on late counting that the Greens vote will climb above the 10% they polled in 2017, and a bunch of these seats currently showing small anti-Greens swings will flip to a pale shade of green.

That’s it for now, I’ll be back later today with a podcast about last night’s results.

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  1. Hi Ben,
    I believe that some seats from poll bludger may be out of date. The abce has different numbers and reports more ballots counted for Chatsworth as an example. For chatsworth the 2pp vote is 52 LNP 48 ALP.

  2. Much nonsense is talked before elections. Most of it comes, it seems, from self-interested groups keen to talk up their horse’s prospects in the race. The nonsense I heard coming from partisan parties in Maiwar left me somewhat flabbergasted given that, for Maiwar residents, the only horse in the race for the last three years has been the Greens’ member. The Greens were active, visible and relevant on bread-and-butter issues. I don’t vote for them but it stood out like the proverbial dogs’ that they’d romp home in this seat. And they did.
    But the nonsense spoken by LNP and Labor! On election day, one LNP “how to vote card” helper told me what a great showing the LNP candidate had put up given she’d appeared, apparently, holding signs up for passing motorists. Another enthused about her brilliant performance in a debate that virtually no one in the electorate would have been aware of. As for the ALP, disinterested observers could well be forgiven for thinking they’d decided to ‘throw’ the contest – for reasons that to me are inexplicable given figures at the last election.
    The Greens seem to know all about ‘visibly’ representing and campaigning. Labor and the LNP are of a different age.

  3. Wow, not a single seat has been gained by the LNP not even in the North. Outstanding. But i find it strange how the LNP got a swing to them in Lytton and at this stage even Clayfield any scruitineers on the ground know why the LNP got a swing to them around Brisbane Airport? Seems to be the only Brisbane area that swung to them

  4. I’ll cop to having put way too much stock in the Maiwar debate than I should have. It’s not that I thought the LNP did well so much as Berkman did badly and didn’t tailor his performance to the dogshit format, but nonetheless, clearly no one in Maiwar cared very much. I never doubted his ability to campaign on the doorsteps and he’s built up a very well oiled machine of volunteers that clearly know what they’re doing. I’ve said it multiple times and I’ll say it yet again: grassroots campaigning matters, knocking on those doors and talking to people matters, and there are a lot of people who’ve historically voted for ALP or LNP that can see themselves voting Green if you make the right pitch to them. The Greens have every right to be optimistic about the Federal election if they’re willing to run a good campaign.

  5. Frecklington announced last night she wanted to stay on as leader but after seeing what a disappointing result the LNP achieved, particularly in the north where they put a lot of effort and resources, there can’t be a chance in high heaven she carries on. I guess that would mean a new LNP leader would need to be found. I guess the two most obvious candidates would be David Crissafuli and Tim Mander. Any ideas on which of the two will win?

    As for the Greens this has been a strong result for them. 2 seats won and 2 others that were quite close. Maiwar and South Brisbane were likely to be won however I didn’t think they would quite as well in Cooper as they did. I don’t know if this quite indicates potential victories in federal seats like Ryan, Brisbane and Griffith but it would certainly suggest that they are likely to win a 2nd senate seat up here in QLD.

  6. Montau whether Greens pick up second Senate seat depends entirely on whether they get the level of assistance they got from their partner in crime the LNP. If LNP ever preference Greens ahead of either Major Parties I will preference them lower than ALP. If a party supports a totalitarian party they must be punished. Greens and One Nation must always be last unless a uniformed NAZI or overt Marxist stands.
    Libs must dump Frecklington this week. She was a total failure as a leader. DUMP FRECKLINGTON ON MONDAY.

  7. Andrew Jackson, LNP preferences would have almost no bearing on the potential for a Green senator being elected.

    Under the new system it’s pretty much start ahead on primary vote or bust, with only the preference behaviour of micro party voters really being relevant.

    The Greens need somewhere between 6%-11% primary vote to be in with a chance of a QLD senator but only at the mercy of the relative success of other parties, and I would say they are guaranteed to win if they get 11+% and guaranteed to lose if they get less than 6%.

  8. Montau

    I was in the ground in Cooper and the swing to the greens where I was, was incredibly strong. I was handing out for the ALP and it was depressing. So many people smiled at us and implied that this time they would be green- no hostility generally. The Greens HTV was taken as the ONLY one by more than those who tool that of the ALP.

    However Jonty will be a fabulous member so it is safe next time.

    To be honest and I am very Green sympathetic, I suspect that Michael Berkman has been saved from catastrophe, since my impression of the Green girl in real life was very disappointing. A very pretty girl in her posters with an enthusiastic crowd of well meaning youngsters and intellectuals, with a superb ground campaign I was a tad conflicted in my own vote, but when I saw said lady in person total turn off – affected and vain I suspect would be terrible in the job and a disruptor.

  9. In seats where the Animal Justice Party (AJP) and/or Legalise Cannabis Queensland (LCQ) ran, not having been parties at the previous election, the Greens probably had a a lower primary that they would other wise have had but almost certainly get most of the votes back on preferences (except in seats where LCQ and/or AJP outpolled them: Bundaberg, Mackay, Maryborough, Nanango and Rockhampton (at least on current figures)).

  10. Bennee
    Major party preferences play a big part in Senate elections. A major party with 2.1 Quotas gets 1 Senator elected on primary votes 1 elected on transfer votes and is then left with 0.1 Quotas which may well be the lowest vote left in count. Therefore their preferences are distributed to minor parties with more than 0.1 Quotas left in count. It matters little whether the major party does well or badly their is a very good chance their remainder quotas will either remain in count or be distributed. If they get 3.9 Quotas at start of preference distribution they will have 0.9 Quotas and will probably pick k up preferences from minors to get their 4th Senator but if they get 5.1 Quotas a near impossibility the 0.1 Balance will elect someone other than themselves.

  11. The probability of a major party having a remainder of 0.2 to 0.4 quotas is not that high though.

    If they have less than 0.2 the value of that remainder is equivalent to a regular old single micro party. If they get between 0.5 and 0.9 remainder they likely survive in the count to come 6th or 7th with their preferences being worth zero.

    As a Green if you could tell me that every KAP voter will preference Green 2nd in the senate or every LNP voter I would take KAP in a heartbeat.

  12. Bennee I will have a look at figures today but there is a very high chance of one of majors having a low remaining Quota after transfer votes distributed.

  13. Bennee
    At last Senate Election only Qld was the only Statethat had no major party with a remainder of less than half of a quota before distribution of preferences
    NSW ALP had 0.8 Quotas left over
    Vic hALp had0.17 Quotas left over and Libs 0.51 Quotas left over
    SA ALP had 0.12 leftover
    Tad Lib had 0.2 left over and Libs 0.14 left over.

    In effect in each of these cases both major parties already have had 2 Senators elected and the fight was between both majors and all minors for 5th and 6th spots.

    Remember order is
    Directly elected ( normally 1 Senator from each Major Party)
    Candidates elected by Transfer votes ( normally 2nd Senator from
    Each Group)
    Candidates elected with Preferences from
    Other groups ( normally 1 major and 1 minor)

    This process has not changed as the result of Group voting tickets being abolished. What chafed is only the way that preferences were counted. Direct elected candidates and transfer elected candidates had no change.

  14. Antony Green has pointed out that it was only in Brisbane-area seats that the Greens made gains and that everywhere else they went backwards. Green is right that all that matters is demographics. Where the demos are favourable to the Greens, they win. Where the demos are against them, they lose.

  15. Paul – I think it’s more complicated than that. The Greens put a massive focus on those inner Brisbane seats this time, because winning 1-3 more seats would have been more important to them than improving their vote in every seat (but not winning any more).

    It’s basically exactly the same as what the other parties do routinely – Labor don’t bother campaigning seriously in LNP heartland, and vice versa, because doing so would mean fewer resources for more marginal seats.

  16. Anna’s win comes from diverse angles. A big thanks to Dan Andrews for inciting Covid fear and severe lockdown possibilities elsewhere and of course Scott Morrison for paying all the Queenslanders not working as nobody could get there.


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