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. Oh I wonder just how well Americans are doing with their Constitutional rights nowadays….

    A bit of report card with extensive links supporting…

    [Americans Have Lost VIRTUALLY ALL of Our Constitutional Rights]

    And the conversation in some quarters of the US is reflecting that the Constitution and Bill of Rights is getting in the way of things and shouldn’t be so relevant today….

  2. Re Uni students and cabinet ministers. Firstly I do not think she was manhandled by the students. It was normal crowd jostling combined with her body guard pushing and shoving the students back. Which is their job o no probs there.

    Also, when our “betters” stick a red hot poker up the bum are we meant to react by saying “Thank you sir, three bags full sire” then tug the forelock ? Posh barbarians are just as bad and dangerous as the uncouth ones.

  3. T.P

    If your point is that democracy is under significant threat in the US, I agree with you whole-heartedly. It is also being eroded in places like Australia.

    IMHO, there is a very strong link between a country having a robust middle class and a country having some form of robust democracy. And we all know what is happening to the middle class in many countries. Abbott’s recent budget is, in this context, merely another straw in the wind.

    But really, Tovarisch, the US Constitution has virtually nothing to do with the Ukraine and the Crimea because it is comrade Putin with his gas blackmail, and his armor and armoured divisions now heavily concentrated on the Ukrainian border (and indeed, inside the Ukraine in the case of the Crimea), who is calling the shots there.

    I invite you to make clear your disgust at Putin’s behaviour.

  4. How quickly they forget.

    Pyne lamenting pseudo violence by Uni studnets. Give me a break!

    I seem to remember Abbott punched the wall either side of a female opponent’s head as his contribution to the democratic process when at Uni.

  5. Perhaps Pyne would like to do a comparative analysis of the way in which Ms Bishop was treated (of which I vaguely dissaprove because it provides a handy unicorn) and the way in which asylum seekers are treated.

  6. Boerwar

    [the Kiwi attempt to capture South-east Asia is dead in the water.]
    The soldiers were devastated. For $50 they took return flights to Hong Kong on the airforce C130’s and loaded up the plane with bargain basement gear. Same planes returned to NZ groaning with such duty free gear.

  7. [Also, when our “betters” stick a red hot poker up the bum are we meant to react by saying “Thank you sir, three bags full sire” then tug the forelock ?]

    Agreed. I said something similar earlier. Pyne’s comments are simply a deflection attempt in my view.

  8. Boerwar
    [ ANSETT-demise training?]
    All part of the very long game cunning plan to add a West Island to the North and South Island 🙂

  9. [Boerwar
    Posted Saturday, May 17, 2014 at 7:02 pm | PERMALINK
    Perhaps Pyne would like to do a comparative analysis of the way in which Ms Bishop was treated (of which I vaguely dissaprove because it provides a handy unicorn) and the way in which asylum seekers are treated.]

    I don’t recall Pyne criticising Alan Jones for saying JGillard should be put in a sack and dumped at sea, or Abbott standing beside a ‘ditch the witch’ sign.

  10. c

    Shoving Bishop has been to gift a unicorn to Pyne. That unicorn will be flogged for all it is worth.

    If I were Pyne I would do exactly the same thing.

  11. [I don’t recall Pyne criticising Alan Jones for saying JGillard should be put in a sack and dumped at sea, or Abbott standing beside a ‘ditch the witch’ sign.]

    I don’t recall Pyne ever apologising for his frat-house style cat calling and chasing after PM Gillard down the hallways of Parliament House either.

    Liberal MPs have zero credibility when it comes to demanding appropriate standards of behaviour from others, esp after their conduct during the last Parliament.

  12. If Pyne is worried about the Bishop fracas, how is he going to react when some aged pensioners with well stocked handbags and exceedingly pointy knitting needles vent their fury?

  13. mh

    A month ago he tried the unicorn of opening up country to the west of the Bidgee to suburban development.

    Apparently there is a line in the budget that a new public service building will be constructed in Tuggers, which is Zed’s ‘stronghold’. His championing of far south Canberra had a lot to do with his popularity, apparently.

    The irony of Seselja championing new suburban development as well as of a new public service building will probably not be lost on even the very thickest of his supporters.

    And they would have had to be very, very thick if they thought that the Coalition was going to be good for the ACT.

    Our budget was bad. It was in debt. The notion that we could buy our way out of trouble by ACT Government stimulus spending was lunatic. We have lost outright $150 million. We will have negative job growth and probably negative population growth. Around a third of our budget is generated by land sales. I imagine this will grind to a halt over the next couple of years.

    And, the price for the Greens vote to enable Labor to become government was a costly, ruinous, light rail project that will never pay for itself.

    It is all pretty crook.

  14. There was a meeting involving John Daly of the NLC and various and sundry the other day.

    Guess who didn’t turn up? Mundine.

    They reckoned he was gutless and they opined that it was alright for him because he lives in a posh house and they live thirty to a house.

    IMHO, it would be literally dangerous for Mundine to turn up in certain quarters ATM.

    He has connived at robbing the poorest of the poor in our society.

  15. [Pyne likes to be liked. Old women stop him in the street to thank him for things, and he mostly remembers their names. His office is staffed almost exclusively by adoring women who keep pictures of a young Pyne pinned to boards above their desks, alongside pug dogs in ties and religious paraphernalia. On a filing cabinet is a picture of Julia Gillard beside the phrase “Flying Start”. The first letter of each word has been crossed out.]

  16. So has Wyatt. So has Pearson.


    Literally, IMHO. The Abbott Government’s budget will kill some Indigenous people.

  17. sceptic

    [How mush does this idiot get paid/ bribed to come up with this, he’s full qualified to be Premier of NSW]

    The World Cup decision was an absolute disgrace. Qatar is not a soccer country and is way too hot.

  18. Zed is UTTERLY useless. If it was up to me, the ALP and Greens would be starting #whereszed and showing him up as the waste of space he is.

  19. One thing Australia and NZ have in common is that most of our land masses comprise a North Island and a South Island. But unlike ours, their South Island is bigger than their North Island.

  20. Having seen the footage the students were not that aggressive, I suspect the security guys were doing most of the pushing and Bishop may have been better off if she didn’t have put her head down but rather looked the students in the eye and engaged.

  21. Poor petals Julie-Chrisie.

    If she/he had been around on one auspicious day when LBJ turned up in Melbourne, which more or less coincided with the last day of term at Melbourne University, she would have a true understanding of rough and tumble.

    I gather PMTA was no shrinking violet in his student days.

  22. Cheers to MTBW, Dave, Victoria and Bemused for your good wishes. 🙂

    Regarding Americans attitudes to their terrible income inequality, coincidentally, Hillary Clinton gave a speech about this yesterday. She specifically cites one of Pres. Clinton’s most significant rectification acts was to get a minimum wage hike through Congress. Since then, only one more increase (to $7.25) was passed in 2007 when Congressional Democrats attached it to Pres. Bush’s Iraq appropriations bill. Today Wayne Swann warned of Tony Abbott’s threat to drastically reduce our minimum wage as revealed by his Commission of Audit.

    Here’s the relevant sections:
    [Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged business leaders to “come off the sidelines” and do more to help combat income inequality in an economic address Friday.

    “As secretary of State I saw the way that extreme inequality corrupted other societies, hobbled growth and left entire generations alienated,” she said.

    She highlighted her husband’s doubling of the earned-income tax credit and minimum wage hike as two policies that grew the economy and helped working Americans.]

    Read more:

    [“This budget should be viewed alongside the recommendations of the National Commission of Audit. It is a war on the middle class, a combination of both Fightback! and WorkChoices. The budget is really a part payment on the findings of the Commission of Audit, which seeks to cut the minimum wage by $140 a week.”]

  23. I didn’t see any of the media or the Coalition protesting when threats against the life of Julia Gillard were being made and joked about.

    Indeed, when an angry mob invaded an awards ceremony in Canberra where both she and Abbott were present, the Libs and the media blamed HER for it. It was put about that “her office” set it up to embarrass Abbott.

    I didn’t see any of the media saying how ridiculous that idea really was, seeing as they were the inaugural awards for civilian bravery instigated by none other than… TA-DA!… Julia Gillard herself. Of course, she crashed her own party, or so it was said, or certainly not unsaid. What a wrecker Gillard truly was. I’m glad we got rid of her.

    I seem to remember also that the mob was protesting about Abbott’s attitude towards indigenous people.

    Boy, must THEY feel silly now? Seeing as how he has delivered on all his promises regarding Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders: better education, more funds, a beefed-up public service department, and so on.

    No matter that he’s closed more indigenous education facilities and programs than I’ve had hot dinners, ripped money out of the portfolio, and just announced mass sackings in the indigenous area of the public service. His heart must have been in the right place, I guess.

    Than again, a Budget emergency carries all before it.

    Add “Indigenous People” to the list of those who have been betrayed. Seems, although they were just simple Abos, tribesmen really, the protestors read Abbott’s intention very accurately.

  24. Hmmmm…..

    I have just eaten a whole lot of funny tasting choccies. Then the person who gave them to me rang. I asked why they tasted funny. Oh, because they are choccy-coated coffee beans.

    I am wired.

  25. Bushfire Bill

    In the year or so after The Rodent was elected there was much talk about what a brave and tough guy he was because of the changes he had made. I was in full barf mode because at that proposition .The people he had put the boot in to were Uni students , the unemployed , “single mothers” , Aborigines etc. Pretty much anyone who was powerless. Gutless cowards both.

  26. Boerwar

    One of the reasons I am proud of NZ is that whilst my establishment school is so in to Kapa Haka a school from ‘Once Were Warriors’ territory are doing this. Beautiful singing.Check out the size of the organ pipes.

    [Aorere College Frontrow Choir – Big Sing 2011 (Ave Maria) ]

    Our lot in the same competition.

    [King’s College The Big Sing 2011 The Heavens Are Telling (from The Creation) by Haydn ]

  27. Prissy is just carrying on the attack,of those who seek higher education. In 1966 Askin the then Liberal Premier of N.S.W, while swaning around with LBJ cane across some Uni students protesting against the war in Vietnam, Askin told his driver to run over the bastards.

  28. Boerwar

    I liked the psychology of their choice of name and tops. Being a choir boy sounds a bit wimpy but the “Front Row” in rugby union ain’t no place for wimps. Hard arsk territory .

    I remember playing against Aorere in the early 1970’s and being very intimidated by having lots of Black Power and or Mongrel Mob members cheering on from the sideline. Well at least until noticing that all their threats were aimed at their players if they did not lift their game 🙂

  29. Oh dear, the respected global journal The Economist is now bagging the Abbott/Hockey cuts to science

    [Joe Hockey, Australia’s treasurer, delivered his first budget on May 13 (allegedly dancing in his office before doing so). CSIRO will see its funding slashed by a total of A$111m ($105m) over four years, an amount that has horrified both scientists and pundits. Exactly which programmes will be lost from the CSIRO is not yet clear, but a tenth of the workforce will see their jobs disappear in line with government plans to shrink the public sector.

    Admittedly conditions at the CSIRO were less than rosy even before the new budget blasted into being. Just under a quarter of its staff were on non-ongoing contracts last year, with 9% not to be renewed. More damningly, the organisation was also subject to a hiring freeze.

    Perhaps the new cabinet of Tony Abbott, elected prime minister last year, should have set alarm bells ringing before now. Alongside a dearth of women (save the foreign minister Julie Bishop), the grouping also lacks a science minister for the first time since 1931—the year the post was created. Instead the Industry and Education portfolios now share the scientific burden between them. Academics fear that Australian innovation, which has led to the development of the bionic ear, eye and solar cell, will become a thing of the past.]

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