Petrie – Australia 2022

LNP 8.4%

Incumbent MP
Luke Howarth, since 2013.

Northern Brisbane. Petrie covers suburbs on the northern edge of the City of Brisbane, including Bracken Ridge and parts of Aspley. It also includes parts of Moreton Bay Regional Council, including Redcliffe, Scarborough and Deception Bay.


Petrie was created as part of the 1949 expansion of Parliament, and has always been a marginal seat, changing sides on many occasions. The seat has been a bellwether seat since 1987.

The seat was first won by Alan Hulme (Liberal) in 1949. Hulme served as a minister in the Menzies government from 1958 until 1961, when he was defeated by Reginald O’Brien (ALP), and Hulme won the seat back off O’Brien in 1963, before resuming a ministerial role.

O’Brien retired in 1972, and the seat was won by Marhsall Cooke. Cooke was not preselected by the Liberals in 1974, and he retired, with John Hodges winning the seat. Hodges held the seat for the Liberals until the 1983 election, when Dean Wells (ALP) won the seat. Hodges won it back off Wells in 1984, and Wells went on to serve as a minister in Labor state government from 1989 until 2004.

Hodges was finally defeated by the ALP’s Gary Johns in 1987. Johns went on to serve as a minister in the last term of the Keating government, losing his seat to Liberal Teresa Gambaro in 1996.

Gambaro held the seat for eleven years before losing to Yvette D’Ath in 2007.

D’Ath was re-elected in 2010 amidst a large anti-Labor swing in Queensland was a minimal 1.7% swing to the Liberal National Party.

D’Ath narrowly lost Petrie in 2013 to the LNP’s Luke Howarth. The 3% swing to the LNP was just enough for the LNP to win with a 0.5% margin, making Petrie the most marginal Coalition seat in the country.

D’Ath returned to politics within six months, winning the state by-election in the overlapping seat of Redcliffe in February 2014. She now serves as Health Minister in the Labor state government.

Luke Howarth was re-elected in 2016 and 2019.


  • Kelly Guenoun (United Australia)
  • Will Simon (Greens)
  • Anneke Wilson (Liberal Democrats)
  • Marcus Mitchell (One Nation)
  • Mick Denton (Labor)
  • Luke Howarth (Liberal National)
  • Chris Cicchitti (Animal Justice)
  • Assessment
    Petrie swung hard to the LNP in 2019 but was quite marginal in 2016 and shouldn’t be considered too safe for the LNP.

    2019 result

    Luke Howarth Liberal National 48,87948.1+3.4
    Corinne Mulholland Labor 31,34830.9-7.5
    Jason Kennedy Greens 8,8778.7+1.4
    Nikhil Aai ReddyOne Nation7,6387.5+7.5
    Troy HopkinsUnited Australia Party3,3613.3+3.3
    Neville FowlerConservative National Party1,4941.5+1.5

    2019 two-party-preferred result

    Luke Howarth Liberal National 59,33158.4+6.8
    Corinne Mulholland Labor 42,26641.6-6.8

    Booth breakdown

    Booths have been divided into three areas. Booths in the City of Brisbane have been grouped as South. Those around Redcliffe have been grouped as East, and the remainder around North Lakes and at the northern end of the electorate have been grouped as West.

    The LNP won similar two-party-preferred majorities in all three areas, ranging from 55.4% in the west to 56% in the east.

    Voter groupGRN prim %LNP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
    Other votes8.661.617,13116.9

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

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    1. My seat, It is still shocking how well Howarth did in D-bay. I expect this to safely be retained by the LNP. Labor doesn’t appear to be taking the seat too seriously as they haven’t announced a candidate yet

      I expect Howarth to be reelected with around the same margin as last time it is possible there will be a tiny 1-2% swing against him but Albanese isn’t cutting through up here so don’t expect this one to be a top target for Labor unless Jim Chalmers is leader

      This seat isn’t “safe” naturally is is only safe on paper so I do expect Labor to take this when they do well in QLD again as Labor did win this seat quite handsomely at the state election.

      As for the reasons why last time the LNP did so decisively here I believe Labors candidate cost them votes because of that Alan Sunderland corruption scandal. Sunderland is gone now but Labors policies on Negative gearing and franking credits may still haunt them in this seat

      The election being 10 months away (May 2022 seems likely especially because of the vaccine timetable and COVID surge) this will be an LNP retain. Negligible swing

    2. Daniel
      Morrison’s mantra of seeing full term, is as likely as any of the legendary “three greatest lies” .
      1/ Barnaby joyce – brain explosion, raising issues, giving opinions, belting someone etc.
      2/ vaccination rollout.
      3/ lockdowns
      4/ new strain of virus
      5/ china
      6/ outbreak of inflation, or interest rate rise.
      7/ leadership challenge to Albo
      These are all excellent reasons to go early

    3. Mick Dent is our Labor candidate and I predict he wont make a dent to Howarth’s margin. I am confident in saying Howarth holds until he retires. Dutton is more likely to lose than Howarth based on the margins in the past couple of elections.

    4. John T(uchus)
      You seem to forget that we had this tiny, tiny little disruption called covid, which gave the state premiers an excuse to upend the whole country. Now if you reckon you could have predicted all that from six months ago, you are probably in the wrong job. The relevance is that events upset the PM’s plans.
      PS i can give out nick names too, if you want to play in the sandpit !

    5. I agree here. Howarth has really built up his margin and out performed colleagues electorally speaking. Plus I think the demographics here are very favourable to leaning LNP. It was just a matter of building a base and not immediately losing it back.

      The fact LNP can’t win state seats in this area is a real indictment on them.

    6. While Luke Howarth is no future leader material by any means, he is well known in his electorate and has built up his following even in previously staunch Labor parts of the electorate. Petrie has been a swinging seat in the past but not this time.

    7. How can we forget the one radio interview Howarth was allowed to be involved in where he stated the he believed it important to put “a positive spin” on the social and economic issue re reducing homelessness in Australia.
      While I am sure he was wanting to put “a positive spin” on this his use of this phrase sadly reflects not only on him but also the attitude of his party to the people of Australia, forgetting of course that we, the people, are their employer. The LibNat handling of the CV-19 pandemic has admirably reflected this and is ongoing.
      As John Howard found to his dismay, you can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all of the time but not all the people all time. Nine years of inaction and spin is enough so bring on an election asap so the validity of some of the statements made here can be tested.

    8. What were the boundaries of this seat in it’s first years during the Menzies period? Most of the suburbs up here didn’t exist back then. Was this seat in the sunshine coast back then or was it an inner city based seat? I cannot find old boundaries to federal divisions online no matter how hard I look on the AEC’s website

    9. Daniel. According to Psephos, in 1949 it included Enoggera, Kedron and Windsor. After 1955, Kedron, Chermside and Redcliffe. After 1968 – Chermside and Redcliffe.

    10. Daniel in 1970’s it was even difficult to get booth figures. The AEC return to Parliament went down as far as sub- divisions normall 5 or 6 per Division DROs did distribute detailed breakdown by booths to candidates but not much beyond that. Great majority of photo copies from that era were liquid on coated paper and faded within months of production a few photocopiers involved The use of a negative and positive and they will still be OK. Providing the paper was not too moist. If the paper was too moist One sheet will have adhered to another and Paper will be a solid block.

      Electoral commission Queensland on the other hand reported Booth figures to Parliament after every election easier to get information about State elections Than federal elections.

    11. Redistributed, Cheers mate. And before 1949 I guess this was part of Wide Bay? It says ”North Pine” but says nothing about Redcliffe but non of the QLD divisions mention it before 1949

    12. While Luke Howarth is favoured to win, he does have a credibility problem in that there are many major traffic problems in the electorate including Linkfield Road and the Deagon Deviation that he said he would work to fix. While all levels of government are at fault , Luke Howarth has promoted himself as the man to fix the problem with large election advertising for the last two federal elections promising that he will fix the problem of the Linkfield Road overpass. Linkfield Road and the Deagon Deviation become carparks at peak hour with traffic taking up to 25 minutes or more to travel 400 metres on either road. If he is going to make these” promises” he needs to have fixed it over the last six years.

    13. Luke Howarth has provided federal funding, state Labor is dragging their feet with the DESIGN work (as it is with any TMR project).

    14. Would agree with you BJA, transport projects tend to be the focus of the state government, the Federal Govt only provides the funding so any delays would be due to the design work, consultation etc. which is almost always time consuming and not very productive.

    15. Hard to say with full confidence where Petrie will go this election because mortgage belt seats can be ejectors, but I suspect Howarth will pull through. It’s new-build central and that’s also aspirational-voter central. Although that one red Fitzgibbon booth is interesting…

    16. Of course Transport an Main Roads take time with major road works. All of those whining about D Bay Road intersection which at the moment is chaotic not because of transport volume but because of Road works in progress should be redirecting their whining Energy to next blockage point ( prrobably Caboolture West). There is No doubt that infrastructure is following development rather than preceding it.
      Moreton Bay regional Council is the biggest growing area in Australia and clearly big growth requires planning.
      It amazes me that government departments are are not locking in their future needs prior to council Approval. West Caboolture at the moment is worth its value as A farm field. Get government weights tool the value has been inflated bye council approval to develop the land before selecting the school site. Queensland government at the moment is Either looking or has just found the land for a new school in Burpengary East. Education will now be paying $10 plus per square metre ? $40,000 per Acre) When A bit of planning would result in them having only paid $1000 An acre.

    17. It’s a lower socioeconomic area, along with Boondall/Taigum/Geebung etc. You expect Labor to do well there.

      I really don’t think anything interesting will happen in Petrie without a massive ALP landslide victory.

    18. Agree with you Andrew Jackson, in Australia a lot of transport planning happens after development has already occurred rather than preceding it. If we were smart like some Asian cities, transport links would at least be developed in parallel or before development occurs. Take Singapore where they built new metro lines but with some stations unopened due to housing developments yet to be built in the area.

    19. Boondall, Taigum and Geebung are not in the seat of Petrie. The point is that all levels of government are at fault with the traffic problems in the electorate of Petrie. Mr Howarth promotes himself as a ” traffic fixer and infrastructure guy ” so it will be interesting to see if Luke Howarth puts up election signs saying he is fixing the Linkfield Road overpass when completion is not expected until late 2026 at the earliest.

    20. John, I believe Furtive was comparing Fitzgibbon with neighboring suburbs which are in Lilley district.

    21. Yes, sorry. To clarify, my last post was in direct response to Alex’s post. Andrew’s post got chewed up and stayed unpublished for a while, which seems to happen a lot on this site. Those suburbs that are on the other side of the border are actually Labor’s best booths in Lilley too.

    22. I took a short trip into Petrie today . Burpengary to D Bay via D Bay Road and back via old bay road. Howarth Corflutes we’re not numerous but were more numerous than Australian Labor Party’s Mick Denton. Denton’s message is more jobs with an emphasis on Aidstralian Jobs. In fact the message he is pushing could easily be the message of Bob Katter or the late DLP Senator Jihn Madigan. The fact that Howarth is out performing ALP in D Bay is an indication of good campaigning.
      Both major candidates are putting on a good performance.

    23. Luke Howarth is a pretty boring MP, puts out lots of mailers to tell you about government funding a new shade for a bowls club, new car park, new sports field. But I think that’s his strength, he comes across unoffensive and doesn’t talk about his ideology (which is pretty duttonesque).
      I live on the southern border and have seen nothing of Labor’s campaign which leads me to think Labor’s actual on the ground campaigning is very targeted in QLD and that they only home to pick up a couple of seats.
      Petrie won’t change this time without some massive Morrison stuff ups.

    24. AJ
      I have seen plenty of evidence of ALP on D Bay Rd and Anzac Av. There is evidence of Corflute erection in DBay itself This contrasts with neighbouring Longman where Terry Young truck / trucks visible. He seems to like the grass field outside Traditional Funerals at Douthern end of Morayfield Road. Palmer’s money of course evident but no sign of Palmer activists. My prediction is Dickson and Petrie LNP retain Longman a gain by ALP.

    25. I just received my postal ballot and voted. The senate paper’s certainly need to be reduced in size as a metre long paper is beyond ridiculous now.

    26. Why is Marcus Mitchell the One Nation candidate missing off of the One Nation website. And does he live in this electorate or is he another one of those ghost candidates who lives in another state?

      Please explain Pauline because I put PHON 2nd.

      Searching up the PHON candidates name I can find absolutely no details about him, not even a facebook page.

    27. I came across a voter in Petrie today who was ring during the year by Howarth personally to wish her a happpy birthday. Quite obviously an MP with. 110 K constituents can not ring 330 odd people a day to wish them a Happy Birthday but those ring remember the conversation. Howarth has more Corflutes up in Redcliffe than Denton but Denton has more up in Deception Bay. I spotted one house in the canal district of Scarborough with a Denton sign admittedly surrounded by LNP signs.
      Denton has been campaigning for some months and gets my Award for the Best campaigner so far but I think Howarth is safe.

    28. Long time follower, first time poster. Love the contributions and in depth analysis on this site.

      Some interesting observations from the polling stations over the past couple of days. It’s hard to say, and it’s still early days but it does have a feel that there may be a substantial swing on in the Petrie electorate. Not sure it’s enough to be enough to swing above the required 8.5%.

      At the 2019 there was a definite trend of the older demographic at the early polls, this time round definitely seeing all comers.

      Can’t see it flipping but wouldn’t be surprised to see this go back to being an ultra marginal like we saw at the 2016 election.

    29. I am absolutely disappointed that Albanese isn’t taking this seat seriously and hasn’t been up here to campaign. And Antony Green doesn’t even list this as a key seat despite the fact this seat has gone with Gov at every election except for 1 election since 1975?

      I hope if Albanese is prime minister that the people of Petrie including myself are not ignored and if we do return Howarth. Please give us the same attention as you do to your own Labor seats.

      Thinking Flynn is more winnable than here is laughable when you look at historical elections and trends.

    30. Daniel, I wonder if Petrie and the suburbs that are contained within it (particularly around the Redcliffe Peninsula area) are like the Sutherland Shire in Sydney (around Cronulla). Most of the Sutherland Shire area trended Liberal/conservative some decades ago.

      Maybe the same factor is occurring in the Redcliffe area, which will make it harder for Labor to win and change Petrie from a swing/bellwether district to a more conservative leaning one instead.

    31. @ Yoh an, great observation and one that we were certainly discussing today. Bridgeman Downs, certainly Blue Ribbon, but there seems to have been a massive regentrification in the Bracken Ridge and Fitzgibbon areas.

      I can’t wait to see what these polling booths reveal after this election. Plenty of retires have moved on since the 19 poll. I might be wrong, but I think the North Lakes polling stations may Buck the trend and swing back to the LNP.

      Not sure I agree entirely with your statement on the Sutherland Shire being comparable to the Redcliffe peninsular. Very different demographics in play.

    32. North Lakes certainly isn’t going to the right even though I haven’t seen a single ALP sign here. But at the state election there were loads.

      We are a swinging area but policies such as Negative gearing and house prices and mortgages, cost of living are huge issues here. Good economic management is the key to winning here. I reject that the retirees here will solidly vote LNP.

    33. @ Yoh An, i dont know Brisbane well but i am thinking Redlands council/Bowman maybe a better comparison for the Sutherlands Shire than Redcliffe Peninsula. It seems SEIFA scores for Redcliffe, Deception Bay etc are quite different to Cronulla etc. Fun fact Bowman is the least ethnically diverse urban seat in the country. However, a Brisbane resident can probably give a better comparison than myself.
      With respect to Sutherland Shire it showed an area that moved from mortgage belt outer suburban in the 1970s to established middle class surburbia.

    34. Bowman is the area of Brisbane which I am least familiar with. I rarely travel to Redlands area.

    35. Daniel if you look at One Nation HTV they have a photo of the candidate on them but on this HTV Hanson is solo. Does the One Nation candidate actually exist. In Hanson’s case candidates are just a nuisance getting in the way of Electoral Commission funding collection. A Phantom or dead candidate is far less of a nuisance after Election Day.

    36. I’m somewhat surprised that the only candidates so far who’ve gotten in trouble with the AEC for breaking the rules are the two Lib candidates.

      Surely some of the ON ghost candidates have spurious addresses etc…. Especially considering a lot of them no one seems able to easily identify.

    37. Expat
      They are ghosts because they are invisible not because there is even the allegation that they do not live in their enrolled address.
      It is quite legal to live in Division F and stand in Division S but it is illegal to enroll in Division F
      When you in fact live in Division S.It is not illegal to stand for Division S, never having visited the Division, never visit the Division and even never ever visit Division. Some elections back a Young Labor city residing candidate stood for an un-winnable Queensland Country seat because no one else wanted the task. There are probably many number 2 and 3 Senate candidates for minor parties who are no more than names on a bit of paper solely so that #1 candidate is in a group and voters can vote above the line. One has to asks why any party stands a single candidate in the ungrouped below the line only section of the ballot paper.

    38. I question why people are allowed to run for a seat they don’t live in and have never visited when section 44 and its ridiculous rules exist. It seems like if your mother’s aunt’s basset hound once lived in another country you’re potentially ineligible for election, but actually being familiar with the area you’re representing isn’t necessary. At minimum there should be some requirement that you live in the same state as the electorate you’re running for, if not within the electorate itself or bordering electorates.

    39. Wilson The logic is difficult to understand. If both ALP and LNP committed to changing S 44 so that it just required candidates to be Australian Citizens and Australian residents I think the change would be carried in a a referendum. This could easily be held with the 2025 election with little additional cost. There are a number of other parts of Constitution that related to temporary arrangements for period following Federation in 1901 which could easily be removed providing the major parties do not try and sneak other changes in at the same time.

    40. Well I sure hope section 44 is re-appealed because this is also coming from someone who breaches section 44 due to also having British citizenship.

      I agree it would need a referendum and it would cost much less if it was held on the same date as a normal election.

      As far as I’m aware all the candidates for this seat live in the area except for the One Nation and the Liberal Democrat ones (please correct me if I’m wrong) not sure about the UAP candidate.

      It isn’t just the lower house that is the issue, how do we know all senate candidates live in the state they seek to represent? Didn’t Cheryl Kernot run for senate for NSW in 2010 despite being a Queenslander?

    41. Andrew Jackson, that sounds like a good plan.

      Honestly I’d like to just scrap the constitution and write a new one. The current one was fit for purpose for the 19th century, but it isn’t for the 21st century. Section 44 for example considers it a conflict of interest to be a teacher in the public school system and also run for office, but accepting donations from the fossil fuel lobby and getting a plum job with them afterwards is somehow not a conflict of interest. And the part of it relating to foreign citizenship is plainly xenophobic, completely out of step with the modern, multicultural Australia.

      Rewriting the constitution could allow us to include the formal right to free speech that is missing from our current one, and include formal recognition of indigenous people. And although the smaller states would protest, we could look at fixing the malapportionment in the Senate, where the vote of a Tasmanian is worth 15 times as much as that of a New South Welshperson.

      For a change that drastic though, I’d wait until the day we become a Republic, because then there might be a real appetite for change.

    42. Wilson
      Dangerous to throw out the baby with the bathwater.

      I actually think that the ban of those with dual citizen ship is an excellent idea. Like it or not you cannot serve two masters. Just consider for a moment what would happen if for some reason there is a hot war with China or Russia. If 20% of our Federal politicians were Chinese dual nationals, it just might cause some problems. Ditto of course Russia etc

      In 1915, there was a German nationals in the Queensland parliament who were interned then deported.

      Now of course confusion arises when we talk of dual citizens from the UK or NZ, but that is simply because we have never gone to war with those friendly countries, (and we share a head of state) but you cannot make one rule for some countries and not others.

      The world can change very quickly and you have to consider all possibilities.

      Of course the rule about office for profit is absurd, but it used to be managed effectively. Basically what used to happen was that if a public servant or teacher or nurse etc, wanted to stand for the parliament, just before nominations closed they would be suspended from duty with no pay, with an assurance of reinstatement after the election. This was absolutely standard practice in the ACT and I fail to see why it cannot be made standard practice again.

      Changing by the constitution might work on this one but if not, just legislate for the standdown provisions in each state to be manadatory.

    43. What exactly would be the problem if there were Chinese dual nationals in the federal parliament? I don’t think the nationality status actually dictates their loyalty. You could have disloyal MPs in parliament regardless of nationality, that seems like an issue for the voters and the parties.

      Even if you keep a restriction on dual citizenship you could do a lot to make it more sensible. It shouldn’t apply to ghost citizenships that have never been exercised, or indeed the candidate may not have even realised they were entitled to before it caused them eligibility problems. It should also only apply at the point of election to prevent someone sitting, not to prevent someone from nominating, to prevent these backdated problems, and they should be able to sit once it is resolved. Finally we need to do something about countries that make it difficult or impossible, either legally or administratively, to renounce citizenship. You should be able to make a declaration of renunciation under Australian law that covers any potential foreign citizenships. No more of people just having to give up a political career or spend tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees because their country of birth doesn’t make it easy to renounce.


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