One Nation to test LNP at next state election

TESTING TIMES: If Pauline Hanson’s One Nation polls strongly at the next state election it will test the LNP’s ability to win key Ipswich seats.
TESTING TIMES: If Pauline Hanson’s One Nation polls strongly at the next state election it will test the LNP’s ability to win key Ipswich seats. DAN PELED

THE INFLUENCE of Pauline Hanson's One Nation may well decide what happens in key Ipswich seats at the next state election as the likelihood of a new seat in Springfield also looms.

One Nation polled extremely well in the Lockyer Valley area in past federal and state elections.

At the last state election Ms Hanson lost to sitting Lockyer MP Ian Rickuss by just 114 votes, two-party preferred.

One Nation also picked up over 15% of the vote in Blair at the recent federal election.

What we have seen courtesy of One Nation is a fracturing of the conservative vote in the Ipswich area which will present LNP leader Tim Nicholls with a challenge at the next state election.

Preferencing One Nation will present a risk that has historical lessons.

"If the LNP does that, then just look at what happened to the Rob Borbidge government in 1998 ," Blair MP and local Labor powerbroker Shayne Neumann said.

"They lost government because of preferencing One Nation because there was a big backlash in urban areas.

"Labor lost some seats but the former Coalition lost more because their vote split and small 'L' Liberal voters ended up voting for the Labor Party and the Beattie Government was formed.

"The right was politically fractured and Beattie went on to win well in 2001 and 2004."

One Nation picked up 11 seats in 1998, a situation that if repeated again would spell disaster for the LNP.

The seat configuration in the state is set to change.

The current 89 seats will be 93 seats by the next election as a result of a deal done between the Palaszczuk Government and Katter's Australian Party.

The average enrolment of the 93 seats will be 33,065 with an allowable variation of 10%.

That means the upper limit of the seat enrolment after the redistribution will be 36, 371 and the lower limit 29, 758.

Ipswich West is 8.47% over the average quota, Ipswich is 4.70% over the average and Bundamba 26.41% over the average. The Lockyer seat is 5.24% over quota and Beaudesert 14.07% over

Inala is 2.63% below the average.

The QT understands there is likely to be a new seat in the Gold Coast hinterland region and in the Ipswich-Logan corridor with a Springfield seat.

That Springfield seat would likely take in parts of Logan and Ipswich - around Springfield, Springfield Lakes, Augustine Heights and Brookwater.

It could also take in parts of the current parts of the Lockyer seat such as South Ripley and Deebing Heights.

The seats of Bundamba, Ipswich and Ipswich West could all get reconfigured as a result.

That decision will be made by Electoral Commission Queensland (ECQ).

One Nation has won Lockyer twice, including 1998. Ipswich West also fell to One Nation in 1998.

The QT understands the LNP will come hard at Ipswich West MP Jim Madden at the next election.

Mr Neumann said he was confident Mr Madden would hold onto the seat for Labor, due once again to the fracturing of the conservative vote.

"One Nation will fracture the conservative vote and even if One Nation polls above the LNP I think their (preferences) wouldn't flow strongly to One Nation like they did back in 1998 when the National Party preferenced them," Mr Neumann said.

"I think people are more discerning with how they vote these days and a lot of Liberal voters wouldn't vote for One Nation over Jim."

Topics:  one nation pauline hanson politics

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