Wright – Election 2010

LIB 3.8%

Incumbent MP
Wright is a new seat, primarily covering areas previously included in Blair and Forde:

  • Shayne Neumann (ALP), Member for Blair since 2007.
  • Brett Raguse (ALP), Member for Forde  since 2007.

Wright covers rural parts of South-East Queensland. Wright covers sparsely populated parts of the Gold Coast hinterland, rural parts of the City of Logan, and the entirety of Lockyer Valley and Scenic Rim council areas. Wright covers the towns of Boonah, Beaudesert, Gatton and Laidley, and comes close to the major centres of Logan, Gold Coast, Ipswich and Toowoomba.

The vast majority of Wright’s population was previously included in Blair and Forde. Blair covered Lockyer Valley and western parts of Scenic Rim LGA. Forde covered the eastern parts of Scenic Rim and those areas in Logan. Small parts of the seat were included in Rankin, Fadden, Moncrieff and McPherson.

As a new electorate, Wright has no history. Both of the main seats previously covering Wright’s territory are also recent creations.

Forde was created at the 1984 election as a southern Brisbane seat as part of the expansion of the House of Representatives. The seat has since moved further south and lies on the edge of the urban part of South-East Queensland.

Forde was first won in 1984 by David Watson (LIB), who lost the seat in 1987 to Mary Crawford of the ALP. Watson was elected to the Legislative Assembly in 1989 and went on to serve as a minister in the Borbidge government and as state Liberal leader from 1998 to 2001.

Mary Crawford held the seat from 1987 until her defeat at the 1996 election, serving as a Parliamentary Secretary for the last two years of the Keating government.

Kay Elson (LIB) won the seat in 1996. She held the seat for eleven years as a backbencher, retiring at the 2007 election.

In 2007 the ALP’s Brett Raguse won the seat. Forde was the safest Liberal seat to be lost in 2007, with the ALP gaining a 14.4% swing.

Blair was created for the 1998 election, and took over Ipswich from the seat of Oxley, which at the time was held by One Nation founder Pauline Hanson. Hanson ran for Blair, topping the poll on primary votes. The ALP polled second, with Liberal candidate Cameron Thompson third. Thompson gained Nationals preferences, then defeated Hanson on Labor preferences.

Thompson won by more comfortable margins in 2001 (58.5%) and 2004 (61.2%). The redistribution cut Thompson’s margin by 5.5% before the 2007 election. A 10% swing saw the ALP’s Shayne Neumann won the seat on a second attempt.


Political situation
While this seat’s margin suggests it could be won by the ALP, the local factors suggest the ALP has little chance of winning in 2010. The ALP won Blair and Forde in 2007 with swings of 14% and 10%, making it unlikely that they can gain further swings in Wright.

Wright also covers traditionally rural conservative areas. While the LNP candidate is a former National, the seat would have gone to the Liberals over the Nationals before the merger and there is an understanding that a successful candidate will sit with the Liberals in Canberra.

The Liberal National Party originally preselected Hajnal Ban, a Logan City councillor and the Nationals’ candidate for Forde at the 2007 election. Ban is prominent for admitting to have undertaken surgery to extend the length of her legs. Ban won preselection over former Member for Blair Cameron Thompson. Ban was later disendorsed, and the LNP has snow preselected Barnaby Joyce staffer Scott Buchholz.

The ALP had original preselected Sharon Murakami, but the result wasoverturned and she was replaced by CFMEU official Andrew Ramsay.

2007 result – Blair

Shayne NeumannALP40,66348.83+11.99
Cameron ThompsonLIB35,13342.19-5.17
Peter LuxtonGRN3,2623.92+0.68
Bevan SmithFF1,7182.06-1.56
Dale ChorleyIND1,4291.72+1.72
David WhiteDEM7350.88-0.44
Doug SwanboroughLDP1960.24+0.24
Robert TheisCEC1430.17-0.41

2007 two-candidate-preferred result – Blair

Shayne NeumannALP45,36954.48+10.17
Cameron ThompsonLIB37,91045.52-10.17

2007 result – Forde

Brett RaguseALP34,72144.35+12.15
Wendy CreightonLIB26,57633.95-19.14
Hajnal BanNAT9,55012.20+12.12
Andy GrodeckiGRN3,7564.80+0.73
Iona AbrahamsonFF1,7562.24-1.84
Rod EvansON6710.86-2.87
Chris CoyleIND6230.80+0.80
Maaz SyedDEM4190.54-0.79
Daniel HopeCEC2160.28+0.05

2007 two-candidate-preferred result – Forde

Brett RaguseALP41,41952.91+14.43
Wendy CreightonLIB36,86947.09-14.43

Booth breakdown
I have divided Wright’s booths into the four local government areas contained in the seat. I have also listed the ‘other votes’ result for both Blair and Forde. These categories include votes cast by those not included in the new Wright, but are included as extra information about the seats that previously covered Wright.

The ALP won a majority in Logan, which is  the second-most populous part of the seat. The Liberals won majorities in all other areas.

Polling booths in Wright. Logan in red, Gold Coast in blue, Scenic Rim in yellow, Lockyer Valley in green.
Voter groupGRN %LNP 2CP %Total votes% of ordinary votes
Scenic Rim6.3057.4118,25232.21
Lockyer Valley3.0955.3615,22326.87
Gold Coast5.8760.957,53613.30
Other votes (Forde)5.7048.5813,837
Other votes (Blair)4.6447.2712,197
Polling booths in Wright, showing results of the 2007 election.
Polling booths in Wright, showing results of the 2007 election in the Lockyer Valley.
Polling booths in Wright, showing results of the 2007 election around Logan.


  1. …….and be counted as a Nationals seat in Canberra……

    Hmm, don’t think so; it’s a designated Liberal seat for Canberra by the LNP.

  2. The LNP dealt with the seat in the merger documentation. During preselection it was a condition of candidature that the candidate, if successful, would sit with the Liberals in Canberra.

  3. Curious, how did they deal with the seat in the merger agreement when it wasn’t created yet?

    So does that mean the Nats have managed to lose another seat even when they actually win it?

    The eastern boundary for this seat seems like a quite absurd arrangement in that it extends right across to the Pacific Motorway around Worongary, thus it includes a lot of the western suburban fringe of the Gold Coast, which has no real connection with the inland areas west of the mountains which make up most of the seat.

    It also looks to me like there could be a couple of thousand more voters in the Gold Coast section who probably voted at booths that aren’t within the new boundaries, so are probably missed in the margin calculation. Since those are strong Liberal voting areas, I’m thinking the margin could actually be a little higher than what it’s being estimated at.

  4. I would just like to point out that Labor’s Shayne Neumann is the current Federal Member for Blair. There is enough misinformation that permeates the internet ether, so if you want to remain a credible source of information it helps to get basic facts right

  5. WTF? I didn’t notice that either, and I thought I read it carefully.

    Sharon, if you want to complain about typos go read this page and you can complain about that.

  6. You can designate the seat whatever you like but Hajnal is a National.
    She was a member of the Nationals before the merger so call a spade a spade. It seems the liberal name is more marketable in some regions (mainly because of the southern influx) but the nationals have more people on the ground.
    Barnaby Joyce was over the moon with the selection.

  7. Reports the ALP preselection is a contest between Andrew Ramsey and the previously-mentioned, and apparently occasional Tally Room commenter, Sharon Murakami.

  8. Yes, for the benefit of those not privileged enough to have a local newspaper published by APN, I should point out that anything printed in an APN paper needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

  9. Further to that, Murakami’s preselection has reportedly sparked some internal angst with her win over Andrew Ramsay being the result of the party’s affirmative action rules.

  10. Preselection has been settled and I understand that Andrew Ramsay is the candidate for Wright, not Sharon Murukami.

  11. The Greens aren’t going to be winning Blair, wotif. I’ve also seen zero evidence that the Greens would be preselecting a candidate who announces publicly that she was considering running for the LNP.

  12. It is in today’s QT that Neil Zabel is expected to be endorsed by the LNP to run in Blair. He is the Deputy Mayor of Somerset Regional Council. So that makes three of them. Dr Patricia Petersen (Greens), Shayne Neumann (ALP) and Neil Zabel (LNP). I think that Shayne Neumann will have a fight on his hands. I know that the redistribution advantages him but the ALP are on the nose over a range of issues. The Greens candidate is well known, popular and extremely attractive. The LNP guy is very well liked in Blair, has a nice look about him (have the photo in front of me). My prediction? Shayne Neumann will need to get preferences from Patricia Petersen in order to win the election. Even if he did get them, I think he might lose his seat.

  13. Ben, I have to concede I think it highly unlikely. I really do think that the LNP guy is going to cross the line though.

  14. This ALP tactic is as old as the hills. Publicly discredit the candidate who threatens them, throw in some criminal charges which puts pressure on the candidate’s party to dump them. Not surprising in this case. Hajnal Ban had Wright in the bag. When are other parties going to learn that this is the way the ALP go about their business? This candidate is extremely well liked in the community. The LNP will lose votes for dumping her. No doubt exactly what the ALP planned all along.

  15. “Hajnal Ban had Wright in the bag”

    The LNP have Wright in the bag. It clearly has nothing to do with Labor.

  16. I’m surprised there hasn’t been any speculation (that I’ve seen) about Peter Dutton taking a shot.

  17. Eight to nine running the flag up the pole and testing the winds but expect less to actually contest the preselection …

  18. Sue Lappeman, writing in the GC Bulletin 17 June reports eight hopefuls so far, including:

    * Cameron Thompson (said to be front-runner)
    * Bob La Castra
    * David Neuendorf
    * Scott White
    * Richard Hacket-Jones

  19. So does this mean the seat will be a NAT in federal parliament. What has happened to the Libs????

  20. Andrew Ramsay ALP Wright Candidate news:

    ‘Ramsay 4 Wright’ signs in bright ‘Gillard Red’; the Campaign Office is open in Price Street Nerang – but gee wizz – isn’t that in Moncrieff?

    The red and white ‘Southern Cross’ banner pays homage to the CFMEU but should upset the local RSL who might just prefer the Australian flag that the diggers fought under ….

  21. As a long time local in the new seat of Wright, it will be of interest to note of the major population movement to the area over the last 3 year in the local Lockyer region, the race may be a lot closer then we think in this seat.

  22. LPG. I agree, but unless the Labor candidate gets his campaign manager off of their arse and out of their city office and into the Lockyer Valley to campaign and get some corflutes up then he will miss the opportunity………..

  23. Sorry – let me phrase that the right way…
    LPG – I agree, the labor candidate has a great opportunity to pick up some votes in the Lockyer valley, but has thus far elected to stay mainly at the other end of his seat.
    I agree though – this seat could be closer than many are tipping due to this fact, and the Hajnal Ban saga doing damage to the liberals campaign…

  24. Hi Springfield

    I agree that which ever candidate starts getting into the Laidley/Gatton Townships and putting out a presents, it will be close call till then.

  25. Phew, last one. What a ridiculous and pointless exercise I’ve just undertaken!

    My prediction: Well this has been one of the most curious seats of this election, right from when it was drawn with such weird boundaries. LNP win, 2-3% swing to them.

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