Queensland election 2015

Ipswich West

Margin: Liberal National 7.2%
Region: Western Ipswich
Federal: Blair

Candidates in ballot paper order



Labor (bottom)

Liberal National (top)

One Nation






Electorate boundary map outline courtesy of
Ben Raue of The Tally Room.

Labor’s defeat in Ipswich West at the 2012 election was only its third in a seat whose history goes back to 1960. The first was at the 1974 election, the only event in Queensland’s electoral history comparable to 2012, when Albert Hales secured it for the Nationals by a margin of 0.5%. The second was in 1998, when One Nation’s Jack Paff emerged 1.9% ahead of Labor after distribution of Nationals preferences. Sean Choat’s win for the Liberal National Party in 2012 was easily the biggest of the three, a 16.7% swing delivering him a winning margin of 7.2%.

Ipswich West covers the parts of Ipswich to the north and west of the Bremer River, and extends a further 20 kilometres through hinterland to the west. Labor support is strongest in the west of Ipswich, and weakest in its north and beyond the town limits. The seat was held for Labor by Don Livingstone from 1989 to 2006, outside of the interruption of Paff’s win in 1998. Paff went into the 2001 election under the wing of One Nation breakaway the City-Country Alliance, and polled a dismal 5.1%. Livingstone recovered the seat with a 45.9% primary vote and a 7.3% two-party margin over the new One Nation candidate after preferences, and went similarly untroubled as the One Nation vote declined further in 2004.

Livingstone was succeeded on his retirement in 2006 by Wayne Wendt, a local accountant who had run against Pauline Hanson in Blair at the 2001 federal election. Wendt added 3.7% to the Labor margin on her debut, which was pared back by 3.2% in 2009 and then obliterated in 2012. The Liberal and then Liberal National Party candidate at all three elections was Sean Choat, whom the party website spruiks as having had a “successful career in vocational education and training”. He will be opposed at the coming election by Labor candidate Jim Madden, a Somerset councillor who won preselection ahead of Lloyd Abbott, a local activist with the Electrical Trades Union.

cuTwo weeks out from the election, Labor conducted its campaign launch in Ipswich, presumably with an eye to Ipswich West as much as Ipswich itself. In the week that followed, the electorate was the target of a somewhat confusing combined result of seats in the 6%-9% range for Newspoll, the other two being Cairns and Keppel. The collective two-party swing recorded to Labor was 13.4%, but the overall sample for the poll was a modest 600.

Corrections, complaints and feedback to William Bowe at pollbludger-at-bigpond-dot-com. Read William’s blog, The Poll Bludger.

Back to Crikey’s Queensland election guide

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *