Brisbane – Australia 2022

LNP 4.9%

Incumbent MP
Trevor Evans, since 2016.

Geography
Central Brisbane. Brisbane covers the Brisbane CBD and inner suburbs north of the Brisbane River including Fortitude Valley, Paddington, Ashgrove, Kelvin Grove, Newmarket, Clayfield and Hendra.

History
Brisbane is an original federation electorate. It had been held by the ALP for most of its history interrupted by short periods of conservative MPs, up until the last decade.

The seat was first won by Thomas Macdonald-Paterson, who joined the Protectionists when Parliament first sat. Macdonald-Paterson was not endorsed by the local Protectionists for the 1903 election, and the split in the protectionist vote gave the seat to the ALP’s Millice Culpin.

Culpin was himself defeated after one term by Justin Foxton of the Anti-Socialist Party (formerly the Free Traders). Foxton served as a minister from 1909 until his defeat at the 1910 election by the ALP’s William Finlayson.

Finlayson held the seat until 1919, when he was defeated by Donald Charles Cameron of the Nationalist Party. Cameron held the seat until 1931, when he lost the seat against the tide of conservative gains against the Scullin Government. Cameron returned to serve one term in the neighbouring seat of Lilley from 1934 to 1937.

The ALP held the seat continuously for the next fourty-four years, with only two MPs holding the seat from 1931 until 1975. George Lawson won the seat in 1931 and held it until 1961. He served as Minister for Transport from 1941 until the 1943 election. The seat was then held by Manfred Cross until his defeat by Liberal Peter Johnson in 1975. Johnson defeated Cross again in 1977 before Cross won the seat back in 1980.

Cross held the seat until his retirement in 1990, when the ALP chose Arch Bevis, who held the seat for the next twenty years. While Brisbane has never been held by a large margin, it came closest to being lost to the Liberals in 1996, when Bevis’ margin was cut to 0.36%.

In 2010, the Liberal National Party ran former MP Teresa Gambaro. Gambaro had served as member for the marginal seat of Petrie from 1996 until she was defeated in 2007.

Gambaro won the seat in 2010 with a 5.7% swing, and was re-elected with a further 3.2% swing in 2013.

Gambaro retired in 2016, and the LNP’s Trevor Evans won. Evans was re-elected in 2019.

Candidates

Assessment
Brisbane had been held by Labor for decades, and consistently leaned substantially to the left relative to the rest of Queensland, but the seat has swung to the right since 2007. Despite this trend, the seat remains marginal and could fall to Labor or the Greens. There is a gap of just 2.1% on primary votes (1.6% at the key point of elimination) between Labor and the Greens, so either party could be the main opposition to the LNP.

2019 result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Trevor Evans Liberal National 48,77747.8-2.1
Paul Newbury Labor 24,97024.5-1.4
Andrew Bartlett Greens 22,80722.4+2.9
Anne PerryOne Nation2,5372.5+2.5
Aaron WhittakerUnited Australia Party1,4201.4+1.4
Rod JeanneretConservative National Party7320.7+0.7
Kamala EmanuelSocialist Alliance7140.7+0.7
Informal2,6312.5+0.1

2019 two-party-preferred result

CandidatePartyVotes%Swing
Trevor Evans Liberal National 55,99554.9-1.1
Paul Newbury Labor 45,96245.1+1.1

Booth breakdown

Booths have been divided into three areas:

  • Central – Brisbane, Fortitude Valley, New Farm, Spring Hill, Windsor.
  • North East – Ascot, Clayfield, Hendra, Stafford
  • West – Alderley, Ashgrove, Ithaca, Kelvin Grove, Newmarket, Paddington, Red Hill

The LNP won a large 59.2% majority in the north-east, while Labor won much slimmer majorities in the other parts of the seat. The LNP also won a 55.9% majority on the pre-poll.

The Greens vote was over 25% in the west and centre, and just 18.8% in the north-east.

Voter groupGRN prim %LNP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
West25.849.822,68922.3
North East18.859.221,17420.8
Central28.449.412,70412.5
Pre-poll20.755.925,59825.1
Other votes20.558.419,79219.4

Election results in Brisbane at the 2019 federal election
Toggle between two-party-preferred votes and primary votes for the Liberal National Party, Labor and the Greens.

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115 COMMENTS

  1. This has a better chance of going to the Greens than Ryan. Although, living in the electorate, I should say Labour’s campaign has been really visible for a while now. A lot of properties in this electorate were severely affected by the recent floods! So, I assuming climate change is on their minds. Most people in this electorate are done with Scomo too but I might be living in a bubble…ya never know! My gut feeling with this is that it would be Grn vs Lib and would come down to the wire and Libs edging out Grn on a slim margin. Antony Green seems to agree with me. He listed this one on his key seats page and even seat Josh Frydenberg’s seat with a bigger margin than Ryan and did not list Ryan.

  2. The Green campaign here has been been smaller than in Griffith and Ryan (I’m guessing off the inertia of the Greens having a couple of terms of state and council representation in those seats) but the seat of Brisbane remains the most mathematically close seat of the 3 in federal terms.

    The question is, what portion of disaffected inner city LNP voters would prefer to voice their displeasure with the government voting 1 Green rather than 1 Labor? If their flipping due to climate they’d seem quite likely to go Green.

  3. On top of the disaffected voters, I am also interested to see how the interstate arrivals in this seat behave. A lot of cars with Vic/NSW number plates in this electorate post lockdowns…just an observation. Have even noticed a couple of WA plates. A lot of apartments in this electorate and in most of the apartments, rents have gone up significantly. This is a general trend but as a renter, I feel like this more pronounced in Fortitude Valley/Albion/Bowen Hills. So, I am assuming that it is because of the interstate arrivals.

  4. The floods are the immediate proximate cause for the latest surge in property prices/rents. But obviously that doesn’t explain the last few years of spiralling prices.

  5. “The question is, what portion of disaffected inner city LNP voters would prefer to voice their displeasure with the government voting 1 Green rather than 1 Labor? If their flipping due to climate they’d seem quite likely to go Green.”

    On the other hand, Labor should be able to deliver whereas the Greens have delivered absolutely zip except a lot of colour and movement. And whatever Labor delivers will never be enough for the Greens anyway. I have come to the view that the Greens have done more damage than good in the response to Climate Change (and other environmental issues for that matter) because the Greens have appropriated the issues and let them be parked in a Green ghetto. And with the environment in a Greens ghetto, the Nats and the Queensland LNP have been allowed to go rogue and park themselves in permanent opposition to any environmental protection. If the Greens had existed 50 years and we had a similar political environment we would probably have oil drilling on the Barrier Reef and sand mining on Fraser Island. Malcolm Turnbull tried to change but got done by the LNP view, the ALP have been wedged for never going far enough or going for the good policy but bad politics of the Carbon Tax. The Teals – of whom I am deeply suspicious – can at least widen the spectrum of climate change and environmental politics.

  6. I always wonder how ALP fans reconcile the ‘Greens are impotent’ spiel in their heads with ‘ the Greens are single handedly responsible for the ALP’s own electoral woes’, along with ‘only the ALP can deliver (x)’ and ‘The ALP literally can’t do a thing because we’ll get wedged’. Anyway I sure love the Division of Brisbane

  7. Honestly think this is the most likely seat to change hands in QLD, Morrison won’t go down well here

  8. Brisbane is Greens best chance in Queensland. Ryan May look promising but if Liberal polling detected slightest chance of victory in Ryan a pamphlet on Greens policy on taxation and eg ato w gearing would wipe out their victory chance. Doctors wives may support possums koalas and climate change but threaten their holiday home and they will retreat back to Liberal Party. Brisbane on other hand is not Drs wives but university students white collared workers and public servants in rented flats.
    Parts of Ryan are very ethnically diverse with Indians and Chinese slotting in to Anglo Saxon communities.Money is their motive for migration and increased taxation is not attractive. Greens ( and One nations) Head Wuarters are in Brisbane in Theron joust outside of CBD.

  9. You’d think that in an election where Labor is probably going to improve their vote that the Greens are going to find it difficult to be in a position to win here. I don’t think the Greens are really cutting through so far in the national campaign, but if environmental issues are front and centre for the voters of Brisbane then who knows. Definitely an interesting seat, it’s one of those rare 3 way contests.

  10. I live in this seat and both ALP and LNP are running strong campaigns. I regularly see LNP supporters waving at the high traffic section outside Albion McDonalds, I have also seen ALP supporters about (albeit less so). I get frequent full screen advertisements for Labor with Albanese looking stern when on random wikis on my
    mobile, sometimes when I google something political I get an LNP sponsored result. I have received how to postal vote information from both major parties. I don’t know what experiences are in their other target seats but If the greens are sinking resources into this seat it is completely invisible to me.

  11. Why would you bother running a One Nation candidate here? Ridiculous. This seat is going to be an interesting 3 way contest for sure.

  12. Feel the Bern – because it gives PHON more ability to get more votes in the Senate, and the candidate has to pay for all of the election materials (like corflutes, mail-outs, etc) through companies owned by the bosses of PHON, and so they end up with more money.

    Same for all of the other seats they’re running in, that are just implausible for them to have any chance of winning. It’s a grift.

  13. Where can I find a list of polling booth locations in Brisbane? I’ve searched but cannot find a list.

  14. Trevor Evans didn’t bother showing up for the candidates forum that took place last night, nor did his colleague Julian Simmonds show up for Ryan’s candidates forum.

  15. Greens by far dominating the yardsign battle in Brisbane.

    I’m guessing the LNP thought their ban of signage through the Brisbane City Council would dissuade parties from investing their efforts in that. I guess they didn’t bank on the Greens declaring the restriction unconstitutional infringement on implied right of political speech and in the meantime going ham breaching the 150 sign limit.

  16. It’s gonna be really interesting to see what happens with that. Does council relent and repeal the ordinance? Do they double down and start prosecuting yard sign owners and Streisand the issue? Do Labor join in the protest or do they performatively wring their hands about the anarchy of it all (as far as I can tell they’re complying so far)? I’m really not sure what will happen.

  17. There are about 25000- 30,000 houses in the average Australian electoral division . 150 signs per candidate and 6 candidates in Brisbane 900 signs total.

  18. There are reports in my Greens groups that signs are being physically cut down but the signs themselves are just being left in yards, so I’m not sure whether it’s council workers or just LNP goons taking the law into their own hands.

  19. I know of one fellow that council ordered to take his sign down. Council picked on the wrong fellow and it could become a major battle. My money is on the fellow to win. Shades of the film “The Duke”

  20. There are also 19 Senate candidates enabling a further This is another 2850 signs this makes a total of 3750 Signs permitted.
    I doubt if the Australian Greens have 600 signs erected in Brisbane which would be legal.

    Brisbane City rangers will have a relatively easy task prosecuting any illegal signs because all sign locations have to be registered so any sign not registered with the council is illegal.
    Brisbane City Council sent me a copy of the new rules even though the DLP has no candidates in this election.

  21. It is likely that the requirement to register is also unconstitutional. A register of the names and addresses of political party supporters? Retained by the local council? Huh?

    I think the Greens are trying to register some under senate candidates but I’m unsure what interpretation of the vague rules the BCC is using (is each division an “electorate” or is the “electorate” for senate candidates the whole of QLD and therefore they can have 150 throughout the whole BCC?)

  22. I have read the BCC election sign bylaw and it’s wording is “candidate” therefore if a Senate nominee is a candidate they count. The by law talkss of Federal seat therefore it is 150 corflutes per Federal seat per candidate.

  23. Well yes there are 7 party candidates per electorate so 1050 signs allowed. That is quite a lot.

    My suggestion for political parties if their people feel strongly about it is to simply drape coloured material in windows or in trees etc, or tie on coloured balloons – not very environmentally friendly but reusable ribbon would be OK. I do not think that the council could ban green, red or blue curtains or ribbons on trees or even coloured paineed fences.

    The reality is that most people driving by see the colour of the poster and only rarely get a look at the actual picture or message. Spotlight might get a run of blue, red or green frabric.

  24. Councils have a somewhat expansionary view of their peripheral powers In Victoria and NSW some councils have actually banned planting of non native trees.
    I have yet to see a set of curtains with an embroidered authorisation at the base.

  25. Andrew
    No authorization would be needed for simply handing a green, red or blue curtain, or for tying ribbons to a tree. Not unless the council were to ban green curtains or coloured balloons or party decorations.

  26. Out and about today in Fadden, Forde, Rankin, Moreton, Oxley and Griffith and the effect of the Brisbane City Council’s signage bylaw is stark between Gold Coast + Logan and Brisbane City. Signage on every street-corner and intersection throughout Logan and the top end of the Gold Coast. Jim Chalmers face is everywhere in Rankin! As soon as you drive a bit up the road and cross the boundaries into the Brisbane City council area, it is almost impossible to find any sign that there is even an election on. I found that Bonner, particularly around Mount Gravatt especially bare. Kind of hurts the spirit of the election but I’m sure a lot of punters are probably happy to not have ugly signage slapping them in the face everywhere they go.

  27. The punters only have to put up with it for six weeks. I’m much more concerned about the restrictions on free speech around election time than I am about whether people have to look at signs when driving around.

  28. The ABC’s been doing quite a bit of coverage here lately without ignoring the Greens candidate for once, and actually seem to be talking up Stephen Bates’ chances. Similarly Griffith has been getting media attention too, particularly in the Courier Mail. Ryan’s been flying under the networks’ radar, even though John Howard’s been specially flown in to perform electoral CPR on Simmonds’ campaign (only News Ltd reported on it as far as I know)

    An interesting factoid that keeps getting repeated in tv spots is that the Div of Brisbane has the lowest average age population of any federal division in the country, so it’s remarkable that the LNP have managed to cling on as long as they have, especially since Trevor Evans isn’t exactly known as a fantastic campaigner.

    Finally, Liberals HTVs seem to have been finalised. They’re recommending all Labor candidates in Victoria ahead of the Greens and not bothering to make recommendations in the Div of Canberra other than to vote 1 Liberal. Now every ALP/GRN head-to-head matchup will be a layup for Labor, so Wills, Cooper and Canberra will stay as boring, safe ALP seats on election night. That means Higgins, Richmond (depending who you ask) and Griffith, Ryan and the Div of Brisbane are the only real possibilities for Greens gains in the HoR.

  29. @Furtive that’s better than expected for Canberra and I think it will end up at least a Labor vs Green marginal seat. Cooper has a neo Nazi for the Liberal candidate, so some chance of disendorsement (and therefore no Lib HTV)

    Macnamara has a dynamic of Liberals winning primaries but Libs seem to be tanking hard there so who knows if that will hold.

    Greens have probably undercooked Brisbane and Ryan but both still winnable.

  30. Furtive Lawngnome
    I believe Macnamara should also be on your list of Greens possibilities, although I personally only see Higgins as a likely Greens gain. In the 3 QLD seats, Richmond, and Macnamara they are outside shots, and in ALP-GRN contests like Cooper, Wills, Canberra, and Grayndler, they don’t have a shot this time. In 2025 after the first Labor term those four will become more competitive for the Greens.

  31. Sorry getting a bit ahead of myself there, in 2025 after what is likely to be the first Labor term. Not over yet though it probably should be.

  32. Pretty much agree with you midnight. I think only Higgins is likely, with the others as outside shots. i think that none of the ALP seats are winnable for the greens this election.

  33. This is a liberal leaning marginal.. with close to a 50/ 50 split between alp and gr. In 2019 despite labors bad vote in qld there was a slight swing to Labor. Now what happens assume Labor improves its vote they or the gr could defeat the liberal.

  34. Really weird how Liberal Democrats keep turning out to be the exact opposite of liberal

  35. @FL Well to be fair there aren’t exactly that many Liberals left in the Liberal party either.

    As for the electorate of Brisbane though, I don’t expect the LNP to hold on here. In the lead up to this election it became obvious to me why no preselection challenge (as far as I’m aware) was mounted against Evans – because I don’t think anyone they tried to replace him with would have a chance. This electorate may have become friendlier to the Liberals in the past decade or so but I find it difficult to believe somebody who doesn’t identify as a moderate would win here, especially in the current political environment. I expect this to be the first seat in QLD to fall, although depending on how accurate the polls are perhaps it will be the only one. I’m concerned Morrison may be a good enough fit for electorates like Longman that they won’t swing as they “should”.

  36. The YouGov MRP has the following result in Brisbane:

    LNP: 36%
    Labor: 29%
    Greens: 28%
    Others: 7%

    Labor wins on 2PP 54-46.

    Who knows if the MRP is accurate, but it adds to the mounting pile of evidence suggesting Trevor Evans’ days are numbered.

  37. Wow that is close between ALP and Greens. At a guess the minors will break more to the LNP then ALP. It is within the margin of error.

  38. Maverick, I’m going to assume you’re not including the Greens as a minor party in that statement. Considering that in 2019, 82% of Greens voters preferenced Labor ahead of the LNP, this implies that roughly 2% of the 7% Others vote flows to Labor, which is about 29% of their preferences. This is actually lower than the preference flow to Labor from PHON and UAP in 2019, which was about 35% in both cases.

    As I said before, who knows if the poll is accurate, but it has factored in the Others vote breaking more towards the LNP.

  39. Agree Wilson. The Greens are clearly not a minor party in Brisbane. I was assuming that of the minor parties AJP will split about 50 green, 40 ALP ans 10% LNP, but the other three I see as essentially LNP fronts, set up to direct votes to the LNP. PHON is probably the most independent of the three, but the Campbell Newman mob and Palmer are just LNP split offs.

  40. Trevor Evans is a fantastic local member. One of the most intelligent and decent politicians you will ever meet. Everyone that meets him instantly like him and hopefully he has got to know at least 50% of his constituents really well because he will need their votes. But if voters hate his boss as much as people are saying, then he has a chance of losing it simply on this basis which is sad. I dislike Scott Morrison too. I feel sick every time he blethers on trying to weasel out of everything. I am hoping Trevor stays and the LNP lose government because Trevor will make a great shadow Minister, hopefully Attorney General or Environment. Trouble is if Dickson do not vote out Dutton, that may be his new boss and he is worse than Morrison.

  41. After all the hype around the Greens gaining Griffith, it’s interesting to see that now it looks like it may be Brisbane which falls to them. The biggest shock in the YouGov MRP to me is how strong it has the Greens. Still have this a Labor gain but wouldn’t write off the Greens at all.

  42. 1% is a primary gap that is probably within range for the Greens to overcome on preferences in the 3CP, the Greens overcame 1.1% and 0.9% primary vote gaps in the 3CP in Prahran 2014 and 2018 respectively.

    Has Clive Palmer gone through with preferencing the Greens ahead of the Liberals that he said he would do?

  43. Tom the first and best, no, Clive walked back on that statement shortly after and claimed it was a joke.

  44. Brisbane City Council has admitted defeat in their ridiculous effort to limit the number of yard signs per party per electorate to 150. It seems the Greens (and perhaps others) just ignored the ruling and dared the council to take them all down, and eventually the council realised the effort needed was too great.

  45. Will be interesting to see whether Animal Justice Party preferencing Labor over Greens will make the difference here. Has been a deeply unpopular decision.

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