Queensland election 2015


Margin: Liberal National 14.9% versus KAP
Region: Rural Southern
Federal: Blair/Wright

Candidates in ballot paper order



Labor (bottom)

Liberal National (top)


Katter’s Australian Party

One Nation

Palmer United Party




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

Covering rural territory between Ipswich and Toowoomba, Lockyer has never been held by Labor through a history going back to 1888, and along with the since-abolished seat of Tablelands was one of only two electorates to be won by One Nation at more than one election. Its main population centres are Gatton, 90 kilometres west of Brisbane, and Laidley, 15 kilometres to Gatton’s south-east. The seat was won for One Nation in 1998 by Peter Prenzler, who polled 39.8% of the primary vote to unseat its Nationals member of 18 years, Tony Fitzgerald (obviously not to be confused with the chair of the 1987-89 anti-corruption inquiry), whose vote fell from 66.6% to 25.5%. Prenzler ended up in the breakaway City-Country Alliance amid the rapid disintegration of the One Nation parliamentary team, but was outpolled at the 2004 election by One Nation candidate Bill Flynn, with the Nationals reduced to fourth place.

Leadership of what remained of the parliamentary One Nation party – three members, reducing to two when Gympie MP Elisa Roberts bailed out in April 2002 – did not avail Flynn at the 2004 election, when a drop in his primary vote from 28.3% to 20.5% reduced him from first place to third. The winner at the final count was Nationals candidate Ian Rickuss, a former bank clerk and horticulturalist who prevailed over Labor by a margin of 4.1%. Rickuss was challenged for preselection ahead of the 2012 election by Lockyer Valley councillor David Neuendorf, who went on to run as the candidate of Katter’s Australian Party, finishing second ahead of Labor with 23.8% of the primary vote. However, Rickuss’s primary vote remained above 50%, and he scored a secure 14.9% margin over Neuendorf after preferences.

Rickuss held only minor positions as parliamentary secretary and opposition whip prior to the 2012 election, and has been on the back bench since that time. Among Rickuss’s opponents at the coming election are Pauline Hanson, who is back under the banner of One Nation after making her last run for state parliament as an independent candidate in Beaudesert in 2009.

cuThere has been some talk during the campaign about the prospects of a boilover for Pauline Hanson, although it may just have been the struggle for a headline talking. In today’s Courier-Mail three days out from the election, Matthew Killoran reported it was “believed” that Hanson “could surprise the field”, while Dennis Atkins related that “some people on the ground say she is getting plenty of sympathy”. However, Atkins also conceded that “Labor’s standing appears to have recovered enough to put its candidate in second place” – not that Labor is in fact directing preferences to Hanson ahead of the LNP member, Ian Rickuss.

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 *