Dickson – Australia 2025

LNP 1.7%

Incumbent MP
Peter Dutton, since 2001.

Geography
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.

History

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.

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.

Peter Dutton has held his seat ever since. He served as a junior minister in the final term of the Howard government and as a senior minister in the Coalition government from 2013 until 2022. After the Coalition’s defeat at the 2022 election, he was elected as leader of the opposition.

Candidates
No information.

Assessment
Dickson is quite a marginal seat and it is worth watching. Labor did quite poorly in Queensland in 2022 compared to other states. If they benefit from incumbency they could pick up a substantial amount of ground in Queensland.

It’s also worth noting that Dutton has increased his profile now as leader of his party, which will probably improve his position in his local seat.

2022 result

Candidate Party Votes % Swing
Peter Dutton Liberal National 41,657 42.1 -3.9
Ali France Labor 31,396 31.7 +0.4
Vinnie Batten Greens 12,871 13.0 +3.0
Tamera Gibson One Nation 5,312 5.4 +0.2
Alina Karen Ward United Australia 2,717 2.7 +0.5
Alan Buchbach Independent 2,222 2.2 +2.2
Thor Prohaska Independent 1,618 1.6 -0.7
Lloyd Russell Liberal Democrats 1,236 1.2 +1.3
Informal 3,996 3.9 -0.5

2022 two-party-preferred result

Candidate Party Votes % Swing
Peter Dutton Liberal National 51,196 51.7 -2.9
Ali France Labor 47,833 48.3 +2.9

Booth breakdown

Booths have been divided into three areas. Most of the population lies on the urban fringe along the eastern edge of the seat. These booths have been split between north-east and south-east. The remaining booths have been grouped as ‘west’.

The Liberal National Party won a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in the south-east (51.1%) and the west (54.7%), as well as on the pre-poll and other votes. Labor won 52.5% in the north-east.

The Greens came third, with a primary vote ranging from 13.2% in the north-east to 18% in the west, but just 11.7% on the pre-poll.

Voter group GRN prim LNP 2PP Total votes % of votes
North-East 13.2 47.5 16,958 17.1
South-East 15.8 51.1 14,310 14.5
West 18.0 54.7 4,621 4.7
Pre-poll 11.7 52.3 38,111 38.5
Other votes 12.4 53.4 25,029 25.3

Election results in Dickson at the 2022 federal election
Toggle between two-party-preferred votes and primary votes for the Liberal National Party, Labor and the Greens.

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30 COMMENTS

  1. This is a seat that Labor should have won in 2022 with the state-wide 2PP swing to Labor enough to deliver the seat but Labor did kind of “give up” and let Peter Dutton win and go on to be Opposition Leader. I doubt Labor will win it now with Dutton’s increased profile but it’s interesting to see whether Labor sacrificing this winnable seat will benefit them in the other seats they need to win and retain across the country.

  2. The problem for Labor is Albany Creek which is what is giving Dutton his margin. Almost everywhere else goes Labor or if it’s Liberal they are tiny booths. Labor should focus on Albany Creek because Dutton as built a stronghold there.

    What makes Albany Creek liberal leaning compares to others areas of the seat? When I lived in Queensland I went there many times and I couldn’t tell what made the area more conservative. I used to go to Bridgeman Downs allot which is in neighboring seats and that is a high income area because of the number of multi million dollar houses so that was obvious.

  3. Labor would have won this seat in 2007 on these boundaries what saved Dutton was area around Esk (Somerset Region) which is now in Blair. If you think in 2022 Labor actually got a worse TPP than in 2007 then they actually over performed in Dickson compared to Queensland has a whole. I agree with Dan M that Dutton’s increased profile especially in a state that has not produced many PMs means that there will be some parochial advantage. I think next federal election Labor would first try and sandbag Blair before going hunting for other seats. They would win Leichardt with Warren Entsch retiring. I dont see Labor winning Greens held seats in QLD nor do i see Dutton being able to win Lilley, Oxley or Moreton so the battle in outer Brisbane and the regions.

    @Daniel T, Albany Creek seems to have a lot of McMansions, i think parts of this seat are referred to as the Brisbane Hills District so maybe similar in part to NW Sydney

  4. @ Daniel T

    I live southside, so I don’t venture northside too often, but Albany Creek always struck me as a middling suburb – Not too flash, not too shabby.

    However looking at socio-economic profile compared to SEQ average, then by household income levels its holds up very well. https://profile.id.com.au/moreton-bay/household-income?WebID=100&BMID=25. So I can’t see Labor gaining a foothold here. It and Dickson as a whole, might be ripe for Teal candidate given Dutton’s profile and standing with women.

    Personally I think it is FAR too early to be calling out results for any electorate at this stage. A LOT can happen between now and May 25. For me, I think the QLD State election results will have a big bearing on the Federal election. I suspect that Federal Labor won’t be too displeased to see Anna lose and release some of that pressure that seems to be building up here for Labor to go at a State level. Crisafulli has talked up a big game and by May 25 his star may not be shining so bright once the reality of actually fixing problems (as opposed to whining about them) becomes more obvious.

  5. Dickson has been marginal for most of Dutton’s tenure, with the closest being in 2007 thanks to Kevin 07. Believe it or not, Labor was close in 2016 and 2022 as well.

    I expect a lot of political capital to shift to Queensland for the next election. It’s partly to save face as it’s Dutton’s homestate and they’d like to save face. They also have everything to lose and little to gain in Queensland and so they’ll have to sandbag seats like Dickson as well as Bonner, Petrie and Longman.

    I don’t see a teal threat to Dutton as I’m skeptical of the teals chances in outer-suburban areas. I sense Dutton will increase his 2PP as Labor sandbags its own seats and shifts to Leichhardt if Warren Entsch retires.

  6. @votatne yes by the looks of things they only do well here when Labor are on top and the libs are in disarray. They have almost climbed the hill if they haven’t already and very soon they will enjoy the free ride down. Those three years were the Ruddslide, Turnbull Trouble and Mad at Morrison. He will enjoy the opposition bump and from his increased profile as leader as well as qld hatred of labor. Palaschuck goes to the polls in Oct 24 and a loss would see him ride the honeymoon of a Crisafuli govt. The next redistribution will be favourable to him as he will lose the strong abor areas in the south for friendly territory north. Entsch is retiring its been announced I would put Leichhardt in the likely Labor gain but its the only one. The anti govt swing against both federal and state labor could also help. The only time its gone labor in 40 years was briefly in 2007 when he retired temporarily during a period of strong qld state govt a popular incoming Rudd govt who was from qld and the anti govt swing being on. These are uncharted waters. The only constant since 2007 is entsch retiring. Maybe the liberals have let him go because they think they can still win without him and want to put a new mp in for the long haul while their on top. Expect a scomo retirement announce before the election most likely at the election. Dutton will wan to remove any unwanted unnecessary baggage tying him to the former govt as former leaders in parliament only become divisive for the leader. I’m guessing he’s stayed to keep the seat blue during the minn honeymoon.

  7. I have this wild thought that there could be a grassroots independent candidate who will run in 2025 specifically to defeat Dutton. It could be a teal candidate or an openly left-wing candidate who is pro-voice. Dutton started off as party leader with more baggage than Turnbull or Morrison and hence will be a target. It’s similar to the Vote Tony Out movement that targetted Abbott in Warringah in 2019.

    I doubt they’d win as I alluded to above. They would’ve at least given him a scare if they’d run in 2022. I do think it’s harder for a teal to win when there’s a Labor government.

  8. @Votante Labor may secretly want a teal to not run in Dickson and to run against Josh Frydenberg because if Josh wins back Kooyong or wins Higgins then he would be the next Liberal leader. Labor want a Coalition they can’t work with and therefore they personally would rather have Josh but in terms of helping Labor they want Dutton.

    I don’t see why we’re talking about Labor gaining Leichhardt from the LNP but not the LNP gaining Blair from Labor. Marginal doesn’t mean gain. Flynn is also a marginal LNP seat.

  9. I still believe that Dutton will hold this. Labor may surrender in Dickson and welcome a teal run here, whilst sandbagging Blair and/or having a shot at Leichhardt and possibly Flynn.

    @Nether Portal. Labor would ideally prefer Malcolm Turnbull circa 2009 as Opposition Leader, without the Liberal leadership contenders.

  10. @ Votante I get the impression living here that Flynn will remain marginal but is ultimately not winnable for Labor anymore outside of exceptional circumstances. The pro-ALP vote in Gladstone just can’t outweigh the strong LNP vote everywhere else. Leichhardt is definitely the seat more worth targeting of the two.

  11. Dutton will not win the 2025 election…. indeed odds are he will not even be opposition leader then.
    What does he do then stay or retire?

  12. I am not sure if a Teal could win Dickson while quite a bit of it is wealthy a lot of it fairly average and in seats where Labor can win, Teals usually will dont do well. I feel Dutton elevation to the leadership will assist him here and the neighboring seats of Longman, Petrie as well. I do think Blair is potential pick for the LNP so Labor will spend a lot of resources to sandbag it before going hunting in QLD. In terms of potential pick ups for Labor i think Leichardt is the most obvious with Warren Entsch retiring, also it is quite different from other Regional QLD seats is that it is not based on the resources industry or agriculture rather it is based on tourism and has a large indigenous community so i feel it is easier to win than Flynn

  13. @Nimalan a teal wouldn’t win Dickson and I personally don’t think Labor will win Flynn or Leichhardt either. An MP backed by Warren Entsch could win preselection and then become a popular MP. The Queensland state election is in October and I think the LNP will gain Barron River, Cairns and maybe even Cook, all of which overlap with Leichhardt.

  14. Dutton always wins Dickson because:
    He’s always lived there
    Everyone knows him
    He;s acceptable to many otherwise Labor voters
    Once he retires, it’s a safe Labor seat, no one else could hold it for the LNP on present boundaries

  15. Who knows?
    Dutton is very shrewd, Labor/GetUp spent a fortune on Ali France as a candidate, still couldn’t gain any ground.

  16. @ NP
    I agree with you that Dickson is not Teal friendly and is actually a competitive seat for Labor. I also agree with you that Labor will not pick up Flynn for sometime. Regarding Leichhardt IMHO i think it is up for grabs. Demographically, it much better for Labor than other Regional QLD seats not based on the resource industry or agriculture, large indigenous communities. According to Ben’s analysis this seat has actually improved for Labor relative to the country as a whole- https://www.tallyroom.com.au/47432

    @ Nicholas, On current boundaries Labor would have won it by 0.8% in 2007 according to the green dotted line on the graph above. Interestingly, the Somerset Region was in Dickson in 2007 and probably saved Dutton then. Almost 20 years later the Somerset Region is critical for him in Blair to becoming PM.

  17. “Once he retires, it’s a safe Labor seat, no one else could hold it for the LNP on present boundaries”

    I agree that Dutton is shrewd and can defend a marginal seat, but I don’t think it’d be safe Labor without him. It might be marginally Labor, save for strong anti-Labor backlashes like in 2013 or 2019. On state boundaries, its 2PP margin is probably mid-50s (Pine Rivers, Ferny Grove, Everton). Bear in mind, QLD Labor has outperformed federal Labor at recent elections.

    Had he lost his seat at any of the past elections, methinks he’d be in state parliament right now, possibly even as the state LOTO.

  18. Votante, I actually think he would still be in Federal parliament.

    Had he lost his seat in 2007, he likely would have tried again in 2010 or actually got pre-selection in McPherson considering he wouldn’t have been the incumbent member for Dickson in this scenario.

    Had he lost in 2010 somehow (Labor keeps Rudd or no leaks and Gillard wins an increased majority as some polls when the campaign started were pointing to) Then he probably would have ran in the 2012 state election and won and became a minister in the Newman Gov, but might have lost his seat in 2015.

    Had the Rudd comeback had gone to plan in terms of popularity in 2013, and this seat might have flipped. Then Dutton probably would have gone quietly or tried again in 2016 perhaps winning the seat back.

    If he had lost in 2016, then he runs again in 2019 and wins the seat back if the same events occurred, but interestingly no leadership challenge to Turnbull so god knows what would’ve happened. But I suspect someone else would have challenged Turnbull anyway. Morrison still becomes PM, but perhaps a few months later than OTL.

    Have him lose in 2019 and Bill Shorten as PM. then he probably wins his seat back in 2022.

    If he lost in 2022, God knows who would have been LOTO right now (Lets admit it probably would have been Angus Taylor) But he probably wins back in 2025.

    If he losses in 2025, He is done with politics for good.

    So either way. I think the only way to keep him out of fed parliament in the 2010’s and 2020’s is have him lose to Kernot in 2001 (No affair and Tampa + 9/11) and then Beazley becomes PM. Solved.

  19. @ Daniel T
    interesting take. In hindsight, Labor would have been better if they had not selected Kernot for Dickson in 1998 she brought too much unnecessary attention and Dickson had a big swing to Libs in 2001. IMHO i think if 9/11 and Tampa did not happen Howard would have still won the 2001 election albeit it would have been a narrower win. I use the 2001 Aston by-election for my theory. I think Labor would have been able to hold Dickson in 2001 in those circumstances with a sitting member. Interestingly, Dickson and Longman were created in the 1990s and are two seats where Labor has never held for more than two consecutive terms.

  20. IMHO i think if 9/11 and Tampa did not happen Howard would have still won the 2001 election albeit it would have been a narrower win. I use the 2001 Aston by-election for my theory.

    @Nimalan

    Some good rewriting of history here. John Howard was finished if hadn’t been for Tampa and September 11 because of the anger of the GST. Aston bye-election had a tragic death of a very popular Liberal MP. And also there were questions that the Labor candidate chosen wasn’t the best. Remember Labor won Ryan in a bye-election off the Liberals and they had much more stronger candidate in Leonie Short.

    I even think Kim Beazley would have still won even with Tampa happening, but it was September 11 that crushed any hope. Research has shown Tampa won the One Nation vote back for the Liberals, but September 11 won the swinging voters back.

  21. @PN

    You do make excellent points. We can never be sure for certain so what i stated was a hypothesis. I agree with you that John Howard was going through a rough patch with inflation resulting from the GST and petrol prices. I dont agree that he was finished though. The Ryan by-election was held earlier in the year at a worse time than Aston in July. Also Aston back then and still today is a better representation of Middle Australia than Ryan which is really an upper class seat. Aston was a mortgage belt seat back full of new housing estates and young families. In 1998 the mortgage belt seats did not really swing against Howard. Also starting 2001 the economy had started to improve and the good economic times were coming which helps incumbent governments generally.

  22. Caleb…. no chance….. Much as I dislike it…. Dutton will retain his seat. If the environment was bad enough for him to lose his seat.. then the coalition would be defeated. The seat would be endangered in the event of a loss and the corresponding by-election

  23. @Caleb I only recall there being one time where the winning party’s leader was unseated. That was in 1977 in the Northern Territory. CLP leader and incumbent Chief Minister Goff Letts lost his seat of Victoria River despite the CLP winning the election. Interestingly the election before that in 1974 was the only time where a major party has been an extra-parliamentary party, with the entire NT Parliament consisting of the CLP and a few independents with Labor not getting any seats until 1977, one of which was Goff Letts’ seat of Victoria River. Of course the seat of Victoria River has since been abolished, but it was a remote seat covering what today is the seats of Daly and the northern half of Gwoja.

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