Seats of the week: Fadden and Moncrieff

This week’s Seat of the Week double-up accounts for the northern two-third of the Gold Coast, served by Liberal National Party members Stuart Robert and Steven Ciobo.


Teal and red numbers respectively indicate booths with two-party majorities for the LNP and Labor. Click for larger image. Map boundaries courtesy of Ben Raue at The Tally Room.

Fadden covers the northern part of the Gold Coast municipality, from Gaven and Labrador in the south through Coomera, Pimpama and Ormeau to Logan River in the north, with the Pacific Motorway forming most of its western boundary. This area’s intensive population growth has caused the electorate to be progressively drawn into the Gold Coast since its creation in 1977, at which time it contained none of its present territory, instead covering outer southern Brisbane and the Gold Coast’s rural hinterland. The redistribution caused by the expansion of parliament in 1984 drew it into Brisbane, extending as far northwards as Salisbury and Rochedale, with the Logan River as its southern boundary. It first infringed upon the Gold Coast when it acquired Coomera at the 1996 election, the migration being completed with the exchange of Redland Bay in the north for Southport in the south at the 2004 election. The ongoing population explosion caused it to shed nearly 14,000 voters inland of its current boundary at the most recent Queensland redistribution before the 2010 election.

With the exception of 1983, Fadden in its various guises has been won at every election by the conservatives, meaning the the Liberal Party prior to the 2010 merger and the Liberal National Party thereafter. The inaugural member was Don Cameron, who had held Griffith for the Liberals since 1966. The 1975-engorged margin was whittled away at the 1977 and 1980 elections, then overturned with David Beddall’s victory for Labor with the election of the Hawke government. Cameron returned to parliament a year later at a by-election caused by Jim Killen’s retirement in Moreton, which became the third seat he represented. The 1984 redistribution made Fadden notionally Liberal, causing David Beddall to jump ship for Rankin. The seat was then won for the Liberals by David Jull, who had held the seat of Bowman from 1975 until his defeat in 1983. Jull’s margins were less than 5% until 1996, but generally well into double digits thereafter.

Jull was succeeded on his retirement at the 2007 election by Stuart Robert, a former army intelligence officer. Robert was said to have played a role in “rounding up support” for Tony Abbott ahead of his challenge to Malcolm Turnbull’s leadership in December 2009, and was elevated afterwards to shadow parliamentary secretary in the defence portfolio. He was further promoted after the 2010 election to the outer shadow ministry portfolio of defence science, technology and personnel, which was rebadged as Assistant Defence Minister following the 2013 election victory.


Teal numbers indicate two-party majority for the LNP. Click for larger image. Map boundaries courtesy of Ben Raue at The Tally Room.

Moncrieff covers the central Gold Coast from Miami north through Surfers Paradise to Nerang Head, and inland to Nerang and Highland Park. The seat was created with the expansion of parliament in 1984, previous to which the entirety of the Gold Coast had been accommodated by McPherson since 1949, and by Moreton beforehand. Moncrieff originally extended deep into rural territory at Beaudesert, before assuming its current coastal orientation with Beaudesert’s transfer to Forde in 1996. Prior to Moncrieff’s creation the entirety of the Gold Coast had been accommodated by McPherson, which had itself been created with the previous expansion of parliament in 1949. The Gold Coast had originally been contained within the electorate of Moreton, which has since migrated into Brisbane’s southern suburbs. The area has had conservative representation without interruption since 1906, with McPherson passing from Country Party to Liberal Party control in 1972, and Moncrieff being in Liberal and more recently Liberal National Party hands since its creation.

Steven Ciobo assumed the seat at the 2001 election after the retirement of its inaugural member, Kathy Sullivan, who had previously been a Senator since 1974, establishing what remains a record as the longest serving female member of federal parliament. Ciobo emerged through Liberal ranks as a member of the Right faction, associated with former ministers Santo Santoro and Warwick Parer and state party powerbroker Michael Caltabiano. He rose to the shadow ministry in the small business portfolio after the defeat of the Howard government, which was elevated to a shadow cabinet position when Malcolm Turnbull ascended to the leadership in September 2008. However, he was demoted to the outer shadow ministry portfolios of tourism, arts, youth and sport when Tony Abbott became leader in December 2009 and relegated to the back bench after the August 2010 election, which was generally reckoned to be a consequence of his support for Turnbull. Following the 2013 election victory he won promotion to parliamentary secretary to the Treasurer.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

621 comments on “Seats of the week: Fadden and Moncrieff”

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  1. William I saw some posts yesterday that said, that you said that the major polls would be out Sunday and Galaxy today (Sat) is this that the will be published or that ghost who votes will let us know.

  2. If there’s a Galaxy it will be out this evening (Saturday), and probably fairly early in the evening at that, as the Sunday News Limited papers which carry it are available quite early the night before. A Nielsen would be out on Sunday evening, usually at about 9pm by the grace of Ghost. It’s been a while since Newspoll came out earlier than Monday night, and the Ghost tends not to get the jump on its 11pm publication time these days.

  3. Still awake.
    I bet on Sunday when Abbott appears, he will have an earpiece and Credlin will be telling him what to say.
    If I was a Liberal supporter in a marginal seat I would be yelling from the rooftops Ditch the witch.

  4. I bet on Sunday’s Insider’s when Abbott appears, he will have an earpiece and Credlin will be telling him what to say.
    If I was a Liberal supporter in a marginal seat I would be yelling from the rooftops Ditch the witch.

  5. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    MUST READ! – Mike Carlton – Abbott’s name is mud! Mike lets go completely.
    Poor Ray! A naturally nasty type.
    And another naturally nasty type shows his colours. Tinkler.
    What a big-headed prat! Certainly deserving of another big fall.
    The budget ends Australia as we know it. This is the line Shorten has tapped into and will continue to hammer. As the public get to know the facts outlined in this article things will warm up.
    Kate McClymont, inured by weeks of ICAC attendance, is still dismayed by what has been happening.
    And another web of potential corruption emerges thanks to the ICAC hearings.
    Wayne Swan on the ideology driving Abbott’s budget.
    Lenore Taylor on Abbott’s trust deficit.
    James Massola on how the budget is being used to milk much money for the Liberal Party coffers.

  6. And from the Land of the Free –

    An Oklahoman Repug bites the dust.
    And more from the mental giants in Oklahoma.
    Look at these idiot gun users.
    Looks like the Democrats are going to put a fox in the henhouse. Stand by for some funny stuff.

  7. Siting through ICAC for a few hours yesterday was fascinating stuff. Only room for about 20 in the peanut seats, with a similar amount in an overflow room. If anyone is in Sydney whilst Operation Spicer is still on, 133 Castlereagh St Level 7 for some high class entertainment.

    Geoffrey Watson SC is a quite exceptional prosecutor, leading the witness through well researched evidence ( they appear to have all emails, texts, documents, bank statements, phone call records ) produced by the players – before he gets to the “proposition”. Which is something like “you’re lying, aren’t you?”, or “you wanted something in return for these donations, didn’t you?”

    Or my favourite technique where he would read something out from an email such as “Have my friends shown any love yet?” before demanding “So what’s all this about then?”

    What really struck me about the 2 witnesses I saw, first time NSW Liberal MP Chris Spence and shrinking billionaire Nathan Tinkler is that neither of them could really see what they were doing wrong? They were so ingrained in this cash for favours culture that it was a shock to them that anyone cared. Yes they were aware of laws against prohibited donors, but that was something they were above.

    One interesting piece of evidence, shown on the large screen was a audit into donations from Tinklers Patinack farm. $53,000 to the Free Enterprise Foundation which wa discussed at length, above another for $22,000 for “Tony Abbott dinner” on which there was no comment.

    Btw, Nathan Tinkler is not discharged, and will be required to attend again at a later date.

  8. Sprocket

    [What really struck me about the 2 witnesses I saw, first time NSW Liberal MP Chris Spence and shrinking billionaire Nathan Tinkler is that neither of them could really see what they were doing wrong? They were so ingrained in this cash for favours culture that it was a shock to them that anyone cared. Yes they were aware of laws against prohibited donors, but that was something they were above.]

    This lies at the heart of the problem. It’s cultural. This is what they have learned from their environment. We must change the environment in ways that have little to do with trees or endangered species or the atmosphere, save perhaps, in their figurative senses.

  9. I see Julie Bishop’s own website is still trumpeting Labor’s “beat-up” that her government was going to introduce a GP medicare co-payment. I predicted in the early hour of this morning that it would be gone within 24 hours. (and of course, then it will never have existed!)Liberal staffers must be sleeping in today!

    “And let’s not forget where this story came from. It’s scaremongering on Labor’s part. It was a submission made to the Commission of Audit by an entity, it was not a proposal of the Federal Government. I’m in the Cabinet, this has never been proposed, this is not before the Cabinet. And so once more somebody puts forward an idea and Labor mischievously, dishonestly attributes it to the Government. What nonsense.”

  10. morning all


    Mike Carlton really hits the spot with his offering today.


    If I were in Sydney, i would definitely make the time to go to ICAC. It has been very interesting. Appreciate the feedback.

    Rocket Rocket

    Hope team Labor have filed away JBishop’s utterings for future reference.

  11. Various examples of hopocrisy:
    1. You stuff so much food into your cake-hole that you need banded surgery, BUT you tell people they are responsible for looking after their own health;
    2. You had a private school education, got a law degree for nothing and never had a serious private sector job in your life, BUT you say people should stand on their own two feet;
    3. You claim the age of entitlement is over, BUT you can expect a whopping great government pension well before turning 70;
    4. You pretend to be a man of the people, BUT the only real people you’ve ever met were serving food at North Sydney Forum lunches.
    5. You pretend to be honest, BUT you lie in every sentence that starts with a capital letter.

  12. Loughnane whispers to Credlin whispers to Tone (the empty vessel). Maybe that’s all you need to know about Liberal policy.

  13. Watch out David Bradbury.

    The coalition predecessor of the current member (the sexy one) appears to be vying for Labor preselection, judging by her comments on 24 this morning.

    Jackie Kelly gave an appraisal of the budget worthy of a shadow minister, backing up her criticisms with excellent real life examples eg detailed scenarios about how illnesses sweep through young families several times each winter and the new cost implications.

    At a swipe at the extent of detachment of Hockey and Abbott from the real life pressures on families, she explained that from 2000-2005 she was the only member of the coalition with kids under 5years.

    Kelly said that the party now is not a “wide church” and backbenchers who speak out are ostracised, including financial (electoral) ostracism.

  14. I see Carlton’s attack on Abbott is the number 1 story in the SMH, which is as it should be. In the current climate the Fairfax mob are never going to attract readers by throwing up the likes of Vandstone and Sheehan.

    Another interesting thing is the the Guardian Oz gets a lot of comments on stories when compared to Age/SMH. Are people giving up on Fairfax, altogether?

  15. K17

    Yesterday afternoon i spent several minutes watching Paul Murray on Sky channel with his panel of tory friends.
    They see no hypocrisy in what Hockey, Abbott and Co are doing.
    They reckon that people should realise they have to pay for things. Somehow Insinuating that we get things for free. What arses. The propaganda coming out of the mouths of these tories is sickening.
    People already pay for private education and private health. Of course, it is a choice at present. But this mob, want to force everyone who wants to ensure a standard of education and health care to pay. Naturally, there will always be the millions who cant afford to do so. Thereby creating the underclass that Shorten spoke of in his budget reply.

  16. I agree with DragOnista’s article at the ABC from a few days back.

    The Tory premiers had a private meeting with Rabbott weeks ago.

    The outrage and anger is all theatre. Ham acting, some better than others.

    They were in on it!

    This was a strategy cooked up between the feds and the states to make their claims for an increase in the GST valid.

    Increase the GST or the state will go bust!

    Slimey, deceitful bastards!

  17. Psyclaw

    Interestingly, Jackie Kelly has been quite vocal over past few weeks.

    I reside in fhe seat of scullin which is a safe Labor seat, but i am virtuallh on the border of Jaga Jaga which in recent times has swung away from Labor, Jenny Macklin being the member. There is a small part of Jaga Jaga which has public housing. It is where the Melbourne Olympic village was based in 1956. The rest of the seat is primarily made up of families of tradies, nurses teachers and professionals.
    These changes to family payments, uni fees etc. will be keenly felt in these parts.
    I hope JMacklin can get amongst her constituents and make Jaga Jaga a safe Labor seat again.

  18. Unitary State

    [I wish NSW Labor would get rid of Robbo, then Labor could win next year.]

    Sigh … A category error. You mistake a sign of the disease for the disease.

    You also choose the wrong priority. You should wish for your party to have the processes needed to attract worthy people who can develop and effectively advocate worthwhile policy ideas and that exclude spivs and hollow careerists. You should want your party to be the master of itself rather than outsource its politics to Murdoch.

    That might or might not lead to you winning the next election, but absent that, any victory you achieve will be pyrrhic, any popularity you have fleeting and likely to exacerbate unresolved problems. Alternatively, if you can get that done, your victory, when it comes, will be significant indeed, and mark the advent of much worth having.

  19. So the slow unfolding of the finer detail of the budget proceeds.

    Two lady professors with Geraldine on RN pointed out that the HECS changes apply to even existing HECS debts from 2016.

    Interest will be charged at the government bond rate (currently 4%) and minimum payments will be 2%. So anyone who pays the minimum will still be going backwards and their debt will compound at 2% PA (4%-2% paid).

    But more devastatingly, according to these spokespersons, the debt will be compounding at 4% in the period at which the beginning graduate earns less than the you-must-start-paying-now threshold. Ditto if they become unemployed, or take time off for family etc.

    Great social policy! HECS will now become like a credit card ….. follow the minimum repayment requirements and you’ll have an ever (compound) increasing financial millstone around your neck forever.

    The other interesting point was that the proposed market (of tertiary institutions) will determine the range and popularity of courses and therefore control the numbers in various professions graduating.

    This is very risky, says they, because the structural needs within society and the economy for particular numbers of particular graduate categories will be at the unpredictable whim of the market.

    Not enough doctors …. the market will fix it.

    Not enough maths teachers …. the market will fix it.

    Not enough scientists …. who cares.

  20. Sohar – the Guardian’s comments site (with recommends) is a lot more user friendly than the Herald. That’s one of the reasons why Liberal trolls basically get chased away.

  21. Dee

    I thought so from the start. The only Liberal premier who would probably not lose any political capital is Barnett.

  22. 21

    The point about payment for medical services is, of course, that it comes out of a social insurance pool to which we all contribute according to our ability. The Medicare levy is the insurance premium, though it does not cover all the costs of running the system.

    After WW2, Chifley introduced an explicit social insurance component as a part of income tax. Everyone paid a % of their income into a fund that was reserved to cover unemployment and disability expenses. Menzies absorbed these funds into consolidated revenue, but the principal remains. Part of our income is collected to cover the costs of social support. In the case of medical expenses, the premium is still obvious. Each time a PAYG deduction is remitted by an employer to the ATO, a medical insurance premium has been paid.

    It’s quite easy to see from the budget docs how much the Levy brings in each year. I’ll have a look for it.

  23. I have just read the Mike Carlton article linked by BK and would urge anyone who hasn’t already done so to read it now, even the resident tories here. It lays bare the extent of the confidence trick this government has played on the Australian people and labels Abbott as the biggest liar and hypocrite in Australian political history. I couldn’t agree more.

  24. There is so much objectionable about this budget and the processes attended to it that one almost can’t comment on the detail. Where does one start without ignoring some other outrage?

    One thing does stand out for me that hasn’t been much discussed. In the grand scheme of things, it’s something that is going to be lost amongst all the really big things. Yet it does underline the character of the budget’s authors as gratuitously malicious. I speak of the abolition of the position held by Graham Innes, the Disability Commissioner.

    There can be no doubt that the budget could have been substantively as nasty as it was and yet retained the position. That they chose to spear this too rams home the bloody-minded indifference they bear all of the most vulnerable in this country as well as elsewhere.

  25. 30

    [Briefly I would appreciate knowing how much the levy brings in. Thanks]

    Apparently about $1.1bn over four years.

  26. Morning all.


    Yep, Carlton is absolutely spot on today. I’d forgotten how many promises Abbott has made over the last few years until I read his words repeated back at him.

  27. [1923
    Puff, the Magic Dragon.
    Posted Saturday, May 17, 2014 at 1:14 am | PERMALINK
    goodnight all.

    It was about now three years ago I got the call, and the doctor told me I needed to come into the hospital. I went into that hospital as Arthur’s wife. I left fourteen hours later as Arthur’s widow.]

    What a sad anniversary. All the best.

  28. Victoria and Fran…

    [Locking in future funding

    People with disability, their families and carers deserve certainty that DisabilityCare Australia will be funded over the longer term. For this reason, from 1 July 2014 the Medicare levy will increase by half a percentage point from 1.5 to 2 per cent of taxable income.

    Between 2014–15 and 2018–19 approximately $20.4 billion will be raised as a result of this increase.]

  29. We have a system of social insurance run through the tax system. It is best thought of as a system of mutual- rather than self-insurance.

    This system has worked very well for decades. In the case of pensions for the aged and the invalid, it has worked well for more than a century. The Tories just hate the idea of mutual anything and in particular hate the idea that the State can do anything well. They are determined to destroy that which they hate.

    It is all depressingly familiar. This just comes from prejudice, from tribal hatred and the desire to obliterate the supposed enemy.

  30. Hooray!

    [The recommendation is a humiliating outcome for the Coalition government, which pledged to redraw Tasmania’s world heritage map, just a year after the previous Labor government got world heritage approval for an extension of the protected area.

    Unesco’s World Heritage Committee still has to make a final decision on the government’s request for a boundary change, but the IUCN’s recommendation will heavily influence the outcome. A separate recommendation will be made on the cultural, rather than natural, significance of Tasmania’s protected forests.]

    […the Australian Environment Foundation, a group set up by the libertarian thinktank the Institute of Public Affairs, lobbied the 21 nations on the World Heritage Committee to allow the government to alter the boundary.]

  31. Dee

    I am a cynic by nature, and i thought that Mike Baird was putting on theatrics. Makes me think that the fibs wanted BOF out the way cos he eas not as agreeable as Baird

  32. [Hitler parody on the budget. I had a good laugh]

    Too funny.

    Has there ever been a more widely derided budget? I can’t think of an instance.

  33. Victoria

    [Fran 1.1 b over four years does not seem right to me]

    It is the figure being quoted. I suspect it overestimates, because salary packaging can get you around that.

  34. Liberal hate is everywhere to be seen. It is visible in the attack on Labor’s social programs and achievements; in the Royal Commissions; in the bile directed at unions; in the venom summoned up and spewed out by the disgusting Abbott. It is particularly palpable whenever the environment is in question. Basically, they hate the land in which they find themselves and, if they cannot turn it to their own purposes, would prefer to destroy it.

    They are haters through and through and have nothing else to offer.

    All who believe in something better than this have to oppose the LNP with everything we have.

  35. Daniel Andrews announces a Victorian ALP Govt will establish a far reaching Royal Commission into family violence to begin early 2015.

    An excellent initiative.

  36. briefly@40

    We have a system of social insurance run through the tax system. It is best thought of as a system of mutual- rather than self-insurance.

    In the case of pensions for the aged and the invalid, it has worked well for more than a century. The Tories just hate the idea of mutual anything and in particular hate the idea that the State can do anything well. They are determined to destroy that which they hate.

    Now it is basically in the hands of voters and whether they will allow the tories to prevail.

    The tories have gone into this knowing the cost to voters – but supremely confident the mugs will accept it all by the next election.

    Voters got themselves into this and voting abbott out asap is the way, the only way, to permit it to be fixed.

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