Dickson – Australia 2013

LNP 5.1%

Incumbent MP
Peter Dutton, since 2001.

Dickson covers the north-western suburbs of Brisbane and adjoining rural areas. It covers most of the former Pine Rivers Shire, now included in the Moreton Bay Council. Suburbs include Ferny Hills, Albany Creek, Strathpine, Petrie and Kallangur. Further west it includes areas such as Dayboro, Mount Samson and Samford Village.

Dickson has often been considered a typical ‘mortgage belt’ seat and is also characterised by primarily being comprised of urban/bushland interface suburbs.

Dickson was created for the 1993 election, though it was not filled until a supplementary election a month after the general election following the death of an independent candidate during the campaign. It was won for the ALP by Michael Lavarch, who transferred to the seat from Fisher, which he had represented since 1987, defeating the Liberal candidate, future Queensland state Liberal Party leader Dr Bruce Flegg.

Lavarch served as Attorney-General in the Keating government, but was defeated in the 1996 landslide by Liberal Tony Smith (not the same Tony Smith now on the Opposition frontbench).

Smith lost the Liberal endorsement for the 1998 election and recontested the seat as an Independent. A leakage of preferences from his 9% primary vote presumably assisted the narrow, 176-vote victory by ALP star recruit, former Democrats leader Cheryl Kernot.

Kernot was defeated in 2001 by the Liberals’ Peter Dutton, who has held the seat ever since, serving as a minister during the Howard government’s last term. In 2007 an 8.8% swing to the ALP saw Dutton hold the seat by just 217 votes. Dutton strengthened his hold on Dickson in 2010 with a 5.9% swing.


  • Peter Dutton (Liberal National)
  • Geoffrey Taylor (Rise Up Australia)
  • Michael McDowell (Family First)
  • Tyrone D’Lisle (Greens)
  • Michael Gilliver (Labor)
  • Mark Jonathon Taverner (Palmer United Party)
  • Jim Cornwell (Katter’s Australian Party)

Dickson is a marginal seat, but at this election Dutton should be comfortably re-elected.

2010 result

Peter DuttonLNP39,88048.96+3.62
Fiona McNamaraALP27,26433.47-10.95
David ColbertGRN8,88810.91+4.84
Rebecca JenkinsonIND2,5583.14+3.14
Alan RevieFF2,3402.87+0.35
Bob HunterLDP5210.64+0.34

2010 two-candidate-preferred result

Peter DuttonLNP44,90255.13+5.89
Fiona McNamaraALP36,54944.87-5.89
Polling places in Dickson at the 2010 federal election. North-east in orange, South-east in green, West in blue. Click to enlarge.
Polling places in Dickson at the 2010 federal election. North-east in orange, South-east in green, West in blue. Click to enlarge.

Booth breakdown
Booths have been divided into three areas. Most of the population lies on the urban fringe along the eastern edge of the seat. These booths have been split between north-east and south-east. The remaining booths have been grouped as ‘west’.

The LNP won a majority in all three areas, varying from 50.7% in the north-east to just over 60% in the west. The Greens vote varies from 15% in the west to 9.8% in the north-east.

Voter groupGRN %LNP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
Other votes10.9057.0818,66922.92
Two-party-preferred votes in Dickson at the 2010 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in Dickson at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in Dickson at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in Dickson at the 2010 federal election.


  1. Michael Gilliver is the Labor candidate for Dickson. Peter Dutton is very popular in his electorate, and has worked hard to keep this seat in LNP hands. Will be a safe LNP retain.

  2. Peter Dutton is a safe bet. He’s done well to retain his seat in the past, especially when it became notionally a Labor seat.

    Interesting the booth at Mount Nebo, with a 43% Green vote.

  3. If dutton’s vote falls and goes to the palmer party and the alp and greens are able to keep the same vote between them (44%) then I believe this could be one seat where Palmer may preference the ALP to try and humiliate the LNP and the frontbench if the LNP win government. Also Duttons invisibility approach to the health portfolio could play a role in this possibility. This is just a possibilty but probably LNP retain

  4. Observer I think you are not looking at this election realistically if you think Dutton (or the majority of Coalition candidates) will have a decrease in their primary vote this election. Labor and the Greens candidates will see the drop in their primary votes. The LNP will likely stay roughly the same or see a increase. Dickson isn’t the sort of electorate where you’d expect Palmer or Katter’s candidates to do well. Dutton will retain with an increased majority.

  5. Well electionlova i would point to the most obvious and say in the state election in QLD, some LNP MPs suffered swings on the primary vote and that was certainly a bigger landslide then this election will AND the greens actually increased their primary vote, even NSW labor had swing to them on the primary vote at the 2011 election. And i certainly wouldn’t underestimate PUP in qld especially in a traditional battleground that is held by a weak shadow minister

  6. Observer
    Posted June 25 – there is just about no chance that Dutton will be defeated in this upcoming Federal election.

  7. BTW i would just say that i said in my original post that its likely dutton will retain i was merely suggesting a way, an unlikely way for labor to win the seat although i expect PUP will be kind to labor here

  8. Observer – is there a reason you think so? While it’s certainly not an impossible seat for Labor to win, it’s definitely in the fringe set – seats that Labor isn’t going to win unless they make some major progress beyond where they are now.

    I think you may be misinterpreting the PUP. Their preferences may go to KAP, or to Libs, but they’re almost certainly not going to Labor (or the Greens), no matter what some rumours are saying. Palmer’s a mining magnate, big business, and was a member of the LNP until recently. He may have fallen out with the LNP, but there’s no love for Labor, either. The only reason Palmer would have his party preference Labor over the LNP is if he’s trying to actively punish the LNP… and even then, it’s only a how-to-vote card, most PUP voters will probably put Labor below the LNP anyway.

  9. I think Dutton is vulnerable given his performance as a shadow health minister. Alot of people will be wondering whether he would be a suitable health minister and comparing his local activism to the ALP candidate, then Dutton has a big job ahead of him.
    This is also an electoratee where labor has greatly invested in and with Rudd as leader gives those achievements more recognition.

    As for preferences, both KAP and PUP are lead by crzy leaders and depending on their stand on health, may want to preference against Dutton to show what a bad job he has done and the coalitions health policy (if they ever make one). But I can’t say for sure this will fall but it certainly deserves more credit when analysing seats in QLD

  10. this seat had a notional ALP majority going into the 2010 election. The seat was deserted by
    Mr Dutton who sought greener pastures in Wright. The Liberal party did not agree and chose
    an alternate candidate for that seat. Mr Dutton then stood again for this seat.
    This area is marginal territory and a change is quite possible.

  11. The two above comments show why labor should already hold the seat. So you have to put 2010 down to the candidate being rubbish. That leaves me asking why labor preselected her for brisbane which is a key marginal

  12. Should be noted that the ALP was never going to win any seat in ’10 with the knifing of a qld leader. Dickson was always going to be difficult in 07 but it was a knife edge but this time I think the candidate is more intouch with the electorate and has more appeal with a young family

  13. Disagree that Dutton is popular here. Invisible is a good way to describe him. When was the last time he asked a question about health in Parliament? Twelve years is long enough to determine he doesn’t really care about the people of Dickson, especially in light of his trying to seek pre-selection elsewhere on more than one occasion.

  14. As long as Dutton doesn’t do anything stupid… He should be safe for another Decade,
    But what I would like to see is this…. After this election I would like to see the liberal team holding placards saying Thanks for voting for us,, you could Gain enormous respect from the people in this Dickson seat….

  15. Dutton is lucky to still be in Parliament.
    He tried to abandon his electorate before the last election after redistributions made it really hard for him. When he failed to get preselection for a safer seat, he reluctantly stayed put. He arguably survived after Queenslanders revolted over Rudd’s dumping. Had Rudd still been there, Dutton would’ve been history. As it is, he remains there, and he’ll still be there this time.

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