Dickson – Election 2010

ALP 0.8%

Incumbent MP
Peter Dutton (Liberal Party) 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’s previous boundaries saw the seat extend westwards across the ranges to include the rural Esk Shire in the upper Brisbane River Valley. The redistribution transfers this area, now part of the Somerset LGA, to Blair. Dickson gains a small area around Kallangur in the north-eastern part of the electorate from Longman. The boundary changes flip the seat from its wafer-thin 0.1% margin for the Liberals, to a notional Labor seat on a 0.8% margin.

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.


Political Situation
The new notional Labor majority, coupled with Peter Dutton’s highly publicised efforts to abandon the electorate for more fertile ground, should make this a difficult seat for the Liberals to retain. Certainly shaping up as one of the key contests to watch.

2007 result

Peter DuttonLIB38,50746.15-6.65
Fiona McNamaraALP36,43843.67+9.54
Howard NielsenGRN5,0066.00+0.38
Dale ShuttleworthFF2,1182.54-1.75
Peter KerinDEM7970.96-0.64
Connie WoodCDP3230.39+0.39
Brad CornwellLDP2580.31+0.31

2007 two-candidate-preferred result

Peter DuttonLIB41,83250.13-8.76
Fiona McNamaraALP41,61549.87+8.76

Results do not take into consideration effects of the redistribution.

Booth breakdown
Most of the population of Dickson lives along the eastern edge of the seat, running from Ferny Hills in the south to Kallangur in the north. I have divided this area into four areas according to the main suburb(s) in each of these areas, as well as grouping the four booths in the large sparsely populated western part of the seat.

The ALP solidly wins Kallagur and Strathpine-Bray Park in the north of the seat, and wins Ferny Hills in the south by a smaller margin. Albany Creek was won by the Liberal Party, as were the rural western booths.

Polling booths in Dickson. Western booths in yellow, Ferny Hills in red, Albany Creek in green, Strathpine-Bray Park in blue, Kallangur in orange.
Voter groupGRN %ALP 2CP %Total votes% of ordinary votes
Strathpine-Bray Park4.7856.3217,27525.67
Albany Creek4.4443.3514,61021.71
Ferny Hills6.7653.9911,78517.51
Other votes4.7048.0015,218
Polling booths in Dickson.


  1. This one will be a tough call for Peter Dutton.
    His attempt to gain an easy seat in McPherson will also go against him.
    He’d need to pull a rabbit out of the hat to hold on to this seat.

  2. Labor has apparently been blanketing Dickson with pamphlets reminding them that their local MP would rather be on the Gold Coast.

    That kind of thing really does work, especially amongst the more parochial corners of society. I’ve got to say that I think Dutton is a liability for the Libs after his shot at McPherson.

  3. Wonder if Dutton will come back to have a preselection crack at Fisher or Fairfax in 2013? The second half of the story Nick posted the link on in regards to Wright says that McNamara is under pressure as the Queensland Teachers Union is set to defy a Queensland Industrial Relations Commission directive for them to participate in national literacy and numeracy testing. Perhaps something Dutton can use

  4. Peter is doing a fantastic job and I hope he gets re-elected. He attempted to go to McPherson so he could concentrate on being a front bench shadow minister.

  5. Peter is doing a fantastic job and I hope he gets re-elected. He has made over 1,500 visits in his mobile office and is very engaged and works very hard.

  6. Family First candidate for Dickson is local resident, Alan Revie. Alan works as a company site manager and has spent time on the Board of Directors of Genesis Christian College. He has a strong involvement with the local community.

  7. Sally, can you confirm if he is still the candidate? He is no longer listed on the website, hence Ben removed his name from the list as per my previous comments.

  8. I vote Labor at state government level, but I’ll be voting for Peter Dutton at the upcoming Federal election.

    I’m glad I had a chance to talk with him recently at a roadside stall to discuss his vision for our community. What a great guy and a very effective member.

    Keep up the good work Peter. You’ve got my vote.

  9. I’m wondering who else beside Peter Dutton is standing in this seat. So far I’ve received 4 mail outs from Mr Dutton but not a word from anyone else.

    I live on the edge of this electorate and do all my business in another electorate so don’t get to see posters etc. Would be nice if at least one of them could find some time to contact me by mail.

    I have no clue as to how to vote this time, not happy with Gillard and dont like Abbott.

  10. I reckon Dutton will win this based on the swing of about 4-5% that will occur across QLD. However, it should be fairly close.

  11. Peter Dutton should retain his seat as QLD seems to be shifting towards the Liberals on the back of the worst State Government ever in existance and the “flip flop” on Kevin Rudd. Mr Wayne Swan should also be worried in the seat of Lilley I hear rumours of a swing against Labor of between 5% to 7.5% in that seat, which will make it interesting and one to watch

  12. “on the back of the worst State Government ever in existance ”

    People say this about every second Government.

    Swan should be fine.

  13. Do people realise that the State Government has nothing to do with the Federal Government? And if, as David says, Peter Dutton planned to move to the Gold Coast to concentrate on being a member of the front bench, doesn’t that just prove that he is more interested in his own future than that of the voters in his electorate? I want a member who cares about ME, not about himself. His own party on the Gold Coast didn’t even want him, so why would we even consider having him as our representative? He has totally lost interest in Dickson, so let him go!!!! Vote for Fiona McNamara and Julia Gillard. For the first time in Australian history, give women a REAL voice!

  14. Swan could even increase his margin as he has had a very high rise and is now the deputy pm. Lilley is of no concern to the LNP. Noela, no need to convince us: it’s the people of Dickson who aren’t aficionados and don’t have an affiliation to any party you need to be targeting

  15. Dear Peter & Noela
    I respect your views and observations I am only reiterating what I am hearing in the seat of Dickson. I hope all candidates do the best they can in the upcoming election be it Green Labor LNP DLP or Independent.
    Enjoy the election it should be fun !!

  16. My prediction: Had marked this one as a Labor win, but now I think the trend against Labor in Qld will probably be just enough to save Dutton. Liberal win, 1% swing.

  17. I think Dutton will win this comfortably. There is too much of a beat up about him changing seats. The locals will see him as a possible future PM.

  18. Peter will be returned quite easily I believe. There is tremendous community support for him. The naysayers who quote him moving to another electorate don’t understand why – it was because Labor changed the boundaries to include a greater Labor-voting catchment.

    Last night some low-lifes went through Brendale and defaced and smashed all of Peter’s signs. Probably because in a local paper poll 3/4 people were voting for him. If Gillard does win, the blow will be at least softened by Peter’s return.

    Remember – the Kevin07 swing against Peter was because the general public wanted change, not because they didn’t want Peter.

  19. I live in Camp Mountain and work in Strathpine (the two ‘halves’ of this geographically and demographically interesting electorate). Dutton will get back in. All is forgiven.

  20. i was really shocked when i saw peter dutton on Q and A a few months ago and heard that he refused to attend the apology to the stolen generation. in fact he told brendan nelson he would resign if he was made to attend. he was one of the only ministers who did this. i cannot believe he might be health minister!!

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