A post tracking the progress of the late count for the Queensland election.
Click here for full Queensland election results updated live.
In the two days since my last update, Labor’s narrow lead in Bundaberg has worn away, with the LNP sneaking ahead by four votes at the close of play yesterday. However, they continue to hang on grimly in Nicklin, where a slight edge on absents cancelled out their usual deficit from postals, leaving their lead at 67 compared with 84 the other night. Neither I nor the ABC is calling Currumbin for the LNP, where their lead has nudged from 268 to 302, but I imagine the addition of a two-party count on absent pre-polls will take care of that. Similarly, there is no LNP call yet for Clayfield, where counting is proceeding slowly, but there assuredly will be when the postal two-party votes are added.
Three seats are being called that weren’t as of Sunday night: Hervey Bay, now rated a Labor gain after an outstanding pre-poll result came in, and they further managed a remarkably strong result on postals; Burleigh, which is now confirmed LNP with their lead at 582; and Coomera, where the LNP now has a clearly decisive lead of 901.
A piece I wrote for Crikey that they didn’t have room/money for:
As the world braces for an electoral convulsion of one kind of another in the United States, Australia has maintained its COVID-19 era habit of endorsing the status quo with Annastacia Palaszczuk’s re-election in Queensland on the weekend.
It was a good night for the political left, with a Labor government returned, the Greens’ inner-city empire expanded, One Nation rebuffed, Clive Palmer saved from humiliation only by his lack of shame, and the Morrison government denied a return on the capital it spent taking Labor on before and during the campaign. In a parliament of 93 seats, Labor seems most likely to make a net gain of two or three on the 48 it won in 2017, with the negative side of its ledger consisting of former Deputy Premier Jackie Trad in South Brisbane defeat by the Greens in South Brisbane.
The demographics of the seats that have actually or potentially been gained point to Labor’s success among a cohort whose support it probably shouldn’t get used to, namely seniors. The three clearly gained by Labor are Hervey Bay, Pumicestone and Caloundra, which rank second, third and eighth out of the state’s 93 seats by median age (it is no doubt also notable that each was being vacated by a retiring LNP incumbent). In the retiree-rich and normally solid blue Sunshine Coast region, Labor’s performance was of an equal with the Peter Beattie landslides of two decades ago.
Relatedly, Labor seemed to do better than expected among the many greying legions of One Nation deserters, which helped blunt the LNP’s much-touted attack in central and north Queensland. The LNP had plotted a path to victory that ran through as many as seven Labor-held seats in these regions — among them Mackay, which the party did not even win in its epochal landslide of 2012 — but emerged completely empty-handed.
At the other end of the age spectrum, the Greens added South Brisbane to a trophy wall of youthful inner-city state seats that includes Balmain and Newtown in New South Wales, Melbourne, Brunswick and Prahran in Victoria, and Maiwar in Queensland — none of which the party held a decade ago. Reflecting the situation in Sydney and Melbourne, the Greens’ footprint is expanding into the inner urban periphery, adding Campbell Newman’s old seat of Cooper (then known as Ashgrove) to McConnel in the CBD as a potential target for future elections. However, such prospects may depend on the grace of the LNP, which gave the Greens an unusual fillip on this occasion by putting Labor last on its how-to-vote cards.
The resulting transformation in the Greens’ share of LNP preferences in South Brisbane — from about 40% in 2017 to 68% on the latest numbers — had Labor’s election night panellists crying blue murder and Anthony Albanese complaining of an “LNP-Greens coalition”. Had preference flowed as they did in 2017, South Brisbane would be going down to the wire, compared with what looks to be a Greens margin of around 5%.
The other fly in the Greens’ ointment was that their success was very much limited to inner Brisbane. They were not spared the exodus from the minor parties elsewhere, resulting in a drop in their overall vote from 10% to 9%. This raises the possibility that a focus on the very particular kind of seat the party can win at state elections, in terms of both campaign resource allocation and policy orientation, is weakening it elsewhere and imperilling its hold on Senate seats that are determined by the statewide vote.
Last but not least, the election was also the first serious test of Australian opinion polling since last year’s federal debacle, and in particular for YouGov, which has since assumed the job of conducting Newspoll for The Australian. The result was a qualified pass: the election eve Newspoll got the winner right and nailed the LNP vote, but tested its margin-of-error by short-changing Labor by three points and understating the decline of the minor parties.
This post will be progressively updated with news on the late counting for the Queensland election. My live election results pages now include the preference flow by candidate data that the ECQ is uniquely publishing progressively, in a rather more user-friendly and easy-to-locate form than on the ECQ’s site. Here you can readily find the answers to such questions as how many LNP preferences are flowing to the Greens in South Brisbane (the current answer being 67.8% of them).
The ECQ separately publishes the election night count of the primary vote and what other jurisdictions would describe as the “recheck”, on which work began yesterday. This means I have a choice between publishing the election night or the recheck results, and I will be sticking with the former until the latter are largely or entirely completed.
My results system is calling 49 seat for Labor, 30 for the LNP and cross-bench of seven, with seven Labor-versus-LNP contests in doubt. However, some of these are not really so, as will be explained when I consider them in turn shortly: one of the seven should probably be counted for Labor and four for the LNP, leaving only two generally in doubt. And another reminder that the extensive effort that has gone into all this can be rewarded via the “Become a Supporter” button at the top of the page.
• The ABC is calling Hervey Bay for Labor but my system is a hair’s breadth away from doing so. It probably should, because one of the two pre-poll booths has 7639 votes that have so far reported only the primary vote, and which will boost Labor’s 760 lead to by about 375 when its two-party count finally comes through.
• Labor leads by 277 in Bundaberg, but this is without a two-party count on 2833 postals, which by my reckoning should slightly more than halve that. That flow of about 52.5-47.5 to the LNP on postals presumably indicates there is a good chance last postals will wear away what remains of Labor’s lead.
• Labor leads by 84 in Nicklin, and could get a fillip when absents are added, if 2017 is any guide. Against that will be the usual trend to the LNP on late postals.
• The LNP leads by 268 in Currumbin, but there probably aren’t that many votes outstanding, so there would been to be some surprises here on absents and late postals for Labor to win.
• The LNP leads Labor by 547 in Burleigh, which late postals will presumably widen.
• The LNP leads by only 365 in Clayfield, but 5441 votes from the Clayfield early voting centre and 6743 postals should blow that out when they have two-party as well as primary votes reported. The ABC is calling this for the LNP.
• The LNP leads by 814 in Coomera, without much remaining to be added, so you can put down your glasses there.