Macquarie – Australia 2013

LIB 1.3%

Incumbent MP
Louise Markus, since 2010. Previously Member for Greenway 2004-2010.

Macquarie covers the Blue Mountains and Hawkesbury council areas, including the towns of Katoomba, Blaxland, Wentworth Falls, Lawson, Richmond, Windsor and Kurrajong.

Macquarie is a federation seat, and has always sat to the west of Sydney and covered the Blue Mountains, although its boundaries have shifted. It has tended to be a marginal seat, although in recent decades it has not always swung with the national trend.

The seat was first won by the Free Trade party in 1901, and they held it for two terms before Ernest Carr won it in 1906 for Labor. Carr held the seat until 1917, when he was defeated for reelection after leaving the ALP in late 1916 to join the Nationalist Party. The ALP held the seat again from 1917 until 1922, when the Nationalist Party won back the seat. Arthur Manning was reelected in 1925 against future Prime Minister Ben Chifley, who defeated Manning on a second attempt in 1928.

Chifley held the seat for two terms before losing to John Lawson of the United Australia Party in 1931. Lawson was reelected in 1934 and 1937 before Chifley defeated him in 1940. Chifley went on to serve as a senior Minister under John Curtin and became Prime Minister in 1945. He lost the Prime Ministership in 1949, then led his party in Opposition. He was reelected in Macquarie at the 1951 double dissolution before dying a few weeks later.

The seat was won in 1951 by Anthony Luchetti, a longstanding Labor activist in Macquarie. Luchetti had been Chifley’s campaign manager during his first stint in Macquarie in the 1920s, but stood as a Lang Labor candidate at the 1931 election. The split Labor vote saw the UAP win the seat in a slim margin. Luchetti held the seat from 1951 until his retirement in 1975.

The Liberal Party won the seat in 1975 in the person of Reg Gillard, who was defeated by the ALP’s Ross Free in 1980. The 1984 redistribution saw Free move to the new seat of Lindsay, and the Liberal Party’s Alasdair Webster won Macquarie.

Webster lost the seat in 1993 to Maggie Deahm of the ALP, who lost the seat herself in 1996 to Kerry Bartlett. Bartlett made the seat fairly safe over the next decade before the 2007 redistribution saw Bartlett defeated by the long-serving state MP and Minister Bob Debus. Debus went straight into Kevin Rudd’s ministry as Minister for Home Affairs. Debus resigned from the ministry in June 2009 in anticipation of his retirement from politics at the next election.

At the 2010 election the seat’s boundaries were shifted back to the boundaries in 2004. Louise Markus, who held Greenway in 2007 when it covered Hawkesbury council, chose to run for Macquarie instead, and won the seat with a 1.3% margin.


  • Tony Piper (Christian Democratic Party)
  • Louise Markus (Liberal)
  • Susan Templeman (Labor)
  • Teresa Elaro (Democratic Labour Party)
  • Phillip Maxwell (Palmer United Party)
  • Matt Hodgson (Australia First)
  • Danielle Wheeler (Greens)
  • Mark Littlejohn (Sex Party)

Macquarie is a very marginal Liberal seat. Markus is serving her first term representing the Blue Mountains area and she could benefit from more of a personal vote in that area.

2010 result

Louise MarkusLIB38,86744.47-0.23
Susan TemplemanALP28,28432.36-5.75
Carmel McCallumGRN12,31714.09+3.11
Peter WhelanLDP2,0872.39+2.19
Luke PortelliCDP1,8832.15-0.10
Amy BellIND1,7782.03+2.03
Jason CorneliusFF9221.05-0.02
John BatesAF6760.77+0.77
Terry TremethickCA5910.68+0.68

2010 two-candidate-preferred result

Louise MarkusLIB44,80151.26+1.54
Susan TemplemanALP42,60448.74-1.54
Polling booths in Macquarie at the 2010 federal election. Hawkesbury in green, Lower Blue Mountains in blue, Upper Blue Mountains in orange.

Booth breakdown
Booths have been divided into three parts. The Macquarie electorate is clearly divided between the Hawkesbury and the Blue Mountains. There is also clear divisions between the upper and lower mountains.

The Liberal Party polled over 63% in the Hawkesbury, while the ALP polled a 52.6% in the lower mountains and 66.3% in the upper mountains. The Greens vote varied from 23.5% in the upper mountains to 7.4% in the Hawkesbury.

Voter groupGRN %LIB 2PP %Total votes% of votes
Lower Blue Mountains15.0547.3921,89425.05
Upper Blue Mountains23.5433.7116,14518.47
Other votes15.4351.3119,56222.38
Two-party-preferred votes in Macquarie at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in Macquarie at the 2010 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in the Lower Blue Mountains part of Macquarie at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in the Lower Blue Mountains part of Macquarie at the 2010 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in the Upper Blue Mountains part of Macquarie at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in the Upper Blue Mountains part of Macquarie at the 2010 federal election.
Two-party-preferred votes in the Hawkesbury part of Macquarie at the 2010 federal election.
Greens primary votes in the Hawkesbury part of Macquarie at the 2010 federal election.


  1. Not sure why you are worked up about this Ob. Local members always turn up when a new highway, station or other infrastructure is opened due to funding by their opposite number in power.

    Just look at the BER stimulus funding, every LNP still turned up to their local school for an opening even though they may have opposed it in parliament and publicly trashed the program elsewhere. That is politics!

  2. Because this shows how much trouble Markus is in, generally you won’t find an LNP member pushing the button having the photo op especially considering the LNP opposes this. Any that show up don’t go near the camera, unlike Markus who did because it shows how much trouble she is in for retaining Macquarie

  3. I think that Macquarie voters of whatever stripe see benefits for themselves in Labor’s NBN – enough of them have lousy speeds due to distance from exchange and age of the copper network – so there is no point making a stand on Liberal Party principles here. Also, I think that Markus is getting advice that any publicity is good publicity, even if you have to push a big orange button in the company of her election opponent and Albo to get it.

  4. And yes, it does reflect that she has a PR problem across an important swathe of the electorate.

    (sop for Observer there)

  5. The Coalition are not confident in holding this, but with the swathe of marginal seat polls out today and tomorrow, I think we will be able to get a better idea on this seat. I think it’s close but small sample stuff.

  6. A somewhat surprising JWS poll showing the Libs 55/45 ahead on primaries of 51% and 36% for the ALP. This somewhat contradicts other polling I’ve seen, but probably confirms momentum building with the Coalition.

  7. I think the two distinct ends makes it difficult to poll. The polls show momentum but I think this will be tough

  8. Just did a straw poll of my family home in Blackheath. I acknowledge it’s a small sample, but extrapolating from my results it’s looking like a 67% to 33% result to the ALP on primaries in a big upset given polling in NSW to date.

    (subscribed to thread)

    (is there a way to subscribe without posting?)

  9. That straw poll out in Blackheath is consistent with last year’s polling out that way. It is suggesting no swing there what-so-ever.

    This seat is clearly divided in two:

    1. Windsor and the Hawkesbury area, which is majorly pro-Liberal

    2. Blue Mountains. Blue Mountains is interesting as it has one of the larger concentrations of Greens Voters and is generally a Labor area, especially around Katoomba. However, this area did swing to the Coalition in the State Election, voting in Rosa Sage.

    For Louise to lose this seat, she would need to lose her support in the Hawkesbury.

  10. So my polling methods appear to be vindicated. That’s reassuring.

    I’m curious Hawkeye, do you know anything about the heritage bridge issue in the Hawkesbury region? I’ve seen a bit of scuttlebut about that, but not sure if it’s a genuine issue at play, or even how the parties split on it. I believe the state liberal party has an unpopular stance on the bridge, but that’s about it.

    At any rate, given the likely Western Sydney swing it’s hard to see the ALP saved by a bridge in Macquarie. Which is a shame because I had a cheeky little bet on them at $7.

    Interesting what you say about the swing to the coalition at the state election as well. Just spent a few days in the upper mountains and I think I spotted two yard signs (both Tempelman) that entire time.

    I’d love a reason not to tear up my betting slip though if anyone has one?

  11. It’s conceivable isn’t it DB, that the only seat they lose is Indi to MacGowan.

    Brisbane is perhaps a chance, I’m still not sold that Forde is a write-off, but what else could even be described as genuinely vulnerable?

  12. I saw a report of a possible swing against the Liberals in this seat – there’s a turnout for the books if that happens.

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