Election 2019: Communities of interest in North Qld

In a pre-election post I looked at some aspects around the redistribution for Leichhardt and Kennedy which excised the southern suburb of Bentley Park into Kennedy: The changing demographics of Kennedy

Katter is chuffed at his 2.3% 2PP swing. The LNP (and associated lobby groups) are smug about their performance in Herbert, Flynn and Dawson where the appalling George Christensen increased his margin significantly. However the themes in that previous post remain intact. Let’s look at Kennedy first with Katter first preferences:

Election 2016 1

A bit confusing in the division with the second largest number of polling booths in Australia. It should be noted though that the red bar which represents the entire electorate is not in the centre. Let’s look at it this way:

Election 2016 3Election 2016 2

The geographical divide is distinct.  Every polling place in the Cairns urban area was in the bottom 15. Every polling place in the top 15 is located west from Charters Towers out to Mt Isa and the gulf. The LNP candidate was a previous mayor of Charters Towers. It didn’t help. The deal Katter did to ensure survival of the Morrison government in the previous parliament was to support dam projects around Hughenden and Upper Burdekin. I’m not aware of anything specific closer to Cairns?

Communities of interest are frequently quoted in AEC redistributions. So related to Cairns let’s look at Leichhardt and the ABC vote compass survey:

Election 2016 4

Leichhardt fits nowhere near any other ‘North Queensland’ electorate. Which is a theme I have been following a while now for Cairns. This is replicated in aspects of the election result with  measures such as the aggregated vote of populist fringe groups (ON, KAP, Palmer et al) are significantly lower in Leichhardt while the Greens vote increased into double digits. In any comparison with Townsville we have to  remember that Herbert is the only entirely urban electorate in regional Qld outside SEQ.

This is also a reason I have qualms about any push for a North Queensland state which would leave Cairns politically isolated and marginalised in a deeply conservative bastion.

Note: PPVC = Pre Poll Voting Centre




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