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Federal Election 2016

Jun 7, 2014

Seat of the week: Maranoa

Covering Queensland's south-western interior, Maranoa has been in National/Country Party hands without interruption for over 70 years, current member Bruce Scott having assumed the seat in 1990.

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Teal numbers indicate size of two-party majority for the Liberal National Party. Click for larger image. Map boundaries courtesy of Ben Raue at The Tally Room.

Created at federation and fairly constant in its boundaries ever since, Maranoa covers a vast expanse of south-western Queensland accounting for about 40% of the state’s surface area. Most of its voters are concentrated at the inner end of the state’s populous south-eastern corner, including the centres of Kingaroy, Dalby and Warwick to the north, west and south of Toowoomba (which has formed the basis of Groom since 1984, and Darling Downs beforehand). Centres further inland include Roma and Charleville on the Warrego Highway, and Barcaldine and Longreach on the Landsborough Highway further north. The seat’s Liberal National Party margin after the 2013 election is 22.4%, making it the third safest Coalition seat in the country after Parkes in New South Wales and Mallee in Victoria.

Reflecting a familiar pattern in rural Queensland, Maranoa started life as a Labor stronghold and progressively moved to the other extreme with the decline of the shearing and railway workforce. The first changeover occurred in 1921 upon the death of the seat’s inaugural Labor member, Jim Page, initiating a by-election won for the Country Party by James Hunter. The seat returned to the Labor fold when Hunter retired in 1940, but Labor’s Francis Baker was unseated after a single term, emerging the only Labor member to lose his seat amid the party’s national landslide in 1943. It was then held for the Country Party by Charles Adermann until he moved to the new seat of Fisher with the expansion of parliament in 1949, which he would eventually bequeath to his son Evan in 1972.

Adermann’s successor at the 1949 election was Charles Russell, who quit the Country Party less than a year after his election and unsuccessfully contested the seat as an independent in both 1951 and 1954, falling 1.1% short on the latter occasion in the absence of a Labor candidate. That would mark the last occasion when the Country Party’s grip on the seat was seriously troubled, a 9.7% swing at the 1966 election pushing the margin into double digits where it has remained ever since. The National/Country members through this period were Wilfred Brindlecombe until 1966, James Corbett until 1980, and Ian Cameron until 1990. There were suggestions ahead of the 1998 election that a threat might loom from One Nation, but in the event they could only manage third place behind Labor on 22.4%. A 9.7% swing at the 1966 election pushed the margin well into double digits, where it has remained ever since.

The seat’s present long-serving incumbent is Bruce Scott, who served in the junior ministry as Veterans Affairs Minister for the first two terms of the Howard government, losing the position when the Nationals’ weak electorate performance in 2001 reduced its share of the spoils. In October 2012 he became Deputy Speaker, filling the vacancy created by Anna Burke’s rise to the Speakership following Peter Slipper’s resignation, and has retained the position in government. Barnaby Joyce had hoped to facilitate his move from the Senate to the House by replacing Scott in Maranoa at the last election, but Scott was determined to serve another term and Joyce dismissed the notion of challenging him for preselection, saying it would be “self-indulgent personality politics”. He instead opted to cross the state boundary and contest the northern New South Wales seat of New England.

William Bowe — Editor of The Poll Bludger

William Bowe

Editor of The Poll Bludger

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, is one of the most heavily trafficked forums for online discussion of Australian politics, and joined the Crikey stable in 2008.

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2772 comments

2,772 thoughts on “Seat of the week: Maranoa

  1. Boerwar

    Hockey is pursuing the meme of all government expenditure representing ‘other people’s money’.

    He might have considered the following:

    How many days a year do people work in order to pay for the wars in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan and for purchase of klutzfighters.

    (The war in Vietnam is costing us, at a minimun, 32,000 times a disability pension per year, for example.)

    Hockey is basically saying there is no virtue in supporting a society.

    There is only virtue in getting out of the way of greed-is-good spivs.

  2. Henry

    Used to enjoy the occasional bevvie at Greenlees Mad Dog.
    $2 schooners back in the day.
    You could get pissed for $10.

  3. Henry

    That was only at happy hour on a tuesday i might add.

  4. Atticus

    Adding to BK’s comment,
    One assumes that a great majority of folks receiving “welfare” either have spent decades paying taxes for others previously or will be paying income taxes for decades in future employment.

  5. zoomster

    [“He said, ‘If you pursue this, a lot of good people will get hurt and you will be on your own. Look Bob, you’ve been lined up to take a safe Labor seat of Melton in the Victorian Parliament,” Mr Kernohan said in his statement.]

    Ah, that would be the safe Labor seat of Melton that Bill Shorten gained preselection for — right about this time.

    I think the seeds of Mr Kernohan’s grudge against Shorten might lie there…

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/bill-shorten-warned-union-official-against-blowing-whistle-inquiry-told-20140611-39xhy.html#ixzz34KZF5yzl

  6. Boerwar

    FS

    I have been fighting against racism for forty-five years.

    We (as in Australians) have made some excellent progress in that time – progress we can all be proud of – but there is a bit to go.

    Naturally there is discomfort, hostility and outright aggresion in response from time-to-time, but if we all work together on it we will get there in the end.

  7. victoria

    Boerwar

    How much of other people’s money is paying for Hockey and his cronies to stuff up fhe country?
    And how much of other people’s money is going to pay for his generous pension and superannuation entitlements when he is finished stuffing up the country

  8. Kevin Bonham

    matt31@2722

    It’s certainly been a quiet week on the poll front! Next week should bring Newspoll, Morgan, Essential, and surely we must nearly be due a Reachtel?

    Last ReachTEL was conducted on Thursday 8 May and released the day after so if the monthly schedule is being adhered to I’d expect another within days.

    The second-last ever Nielsen shouldn’t be far away either.

  9. Fulvio Sammut

    Well, I’m 64, and I’ve been up against it since I arrive in this country at the age of three and a bit, and most viciously from sadistic bitches in nuns’ uniforms at the age of four and five.

    But there are enough real battles out there to be fought against bigots and racists without taking up arms against thoughtless geriatrics over what they call a small white ball.

    I don’t doubt your sincerity and I admire your consistency and courage, but sometimes I think we need to more carefully chose our battlelines.

  10. bemused

    zoomster@2727


    “He said, ‘If you pursue this, a lot of good people will get hurt and you will be on your own. Look Bob, you’ve been lined up to take a safe Labor seat of Melton in the Victorian Parliament,” Mr Kernohan said in his statement.


    Ah, that would be the safe Labor seat of Melton that Bill Shorten gained preselection for — right about this time.

    I think the seeds of Mr Kernohan’s grudge against Shorten might lie there…

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/bill-shorten-warned-union-official-against-blowing-whistle-inquiry-told-20140611-39xhy.html#ixzz34KZF5yzl

    I am rather disconcerted that people can be ‘lined up’ for safe Labor seats without a pre-selection process having taken place.

    This is one of the things wrong with the Labor party and it looks like we dodged a bullet in Kernohan not ending up with that pre-selection.

  11. Boerwar

    [Fulvio Sammut
    Posted Wednesday, June 11, 2014 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    Well, I’m 64, and I’ve been up against it since I arrive in this country at the age of three and a bit, and most viciously from sadistic bitches in nuns’ uniforms at the age of four and five.

    But there are enough real battles out there to be fought against bigots and racists without taking up arms against thoughtless geriatrics over what they call a small white ball.

    I don’t doubt your sincerity and I admire your consistency and courage, but sometimes I think we need to more carefully chose our battlelines.]

    Thanks for that. I’ll keep plugging away at the racism stuff. I’ll also keep plugging away at my other hobby horses: fighting The Rapacity, and fighting against bad wars. IMHO, we all just have to do our small bit when and where we can.

  12. Boerwar

    b @ 2732
    Yep.

  13. Boerwar

    [victoria
    Posted Wednesday, June 11, 2014 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

    Boerwar

    How much of other people’s money is paying for Hockey and his cronies to stuff up fhe country?
    And how much of other people’s money is going to pay for his generous pension and superannuation entitlements when he is finished stuffing up the country]

    That is different.

  14. Boerwar

    Time for bed. Good night all.

  15. victoria

    Night boerwar

  16. Rossmore

    Gawd just seen Hockey at the Sydney Institute on Lateline.

    Lecturing the poor and middle income people on their obligation to help balance the budget. Sheer. Bloody. Hypocrisy.

  17. deblonay

    Iraq on the boil___
    ____________
    A former Iraqi PM said from Singapore tonight that the only way of defeating the El-Queida like ISIS movenment now,after the capture of most of the niokrth,including Mosul, is by outside intervention …possibly from the US or Turkey….well that seems unlikely given Obama position on such troop[ moves…so what has all the intervention achieved

    Will the Iraqis have the gall to ask Abbott for help…after all Howard did send troops…..but I guess that that would arouse enormous oppossition here now…despite the real threat to the Iraqi regime

    The war was unpopular when Howard sent troops…now it be impossible

  18. zoidlord

    On same night Hockey dumps on equity & equality, US Tsy Sec Lew says income inequality in US is “ultimate test” http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/06/11/us-usa-economy-jacklew-idUSKBN0EM17X20140611?feedType=RSS&feedName=businessNews

    Stephen Koukoulas ‏@TheKouk 5m

    Imagine Hockey saying: The ultimate test for all of us will be how inclusive tomorrow’s economy becomes & how widely our economic gains flow

    Stephen Koukoulas ‏@TheKouk 3m

    Imagine Hockey saying: “The crisis we face today is need to make sure the economy is expanding fast enough to support a growing middle class

    Stephen Koukoulas ‏@TheKouk 3m

    The US Treasury Lew was responsible for those last two quotes.

  19. lefty e

    One of the better articlesIve read in months: http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/jun/09/french-public-debt-audit-illegitimate-working-class-internationalim

    Basically argues that debt has been growing without state expenditure rising:itsall about tax cuts, the state paying higher interest to (increasongly unknown) external creditors: both of which were simply political choices.

    Debt that “grew in the service of private interests, and not the wellbeing of the people” is illegitmate, and should be treated as such (indeed,is,by small number of states). Austerity is its intended product – and its been deliberately inflated.

    Calls for debt audits, and disclosure of creditors.

    Bring it on.

  20. Laocoon

    mikehilliard @ 2665

    [“The average working Australian, be they a cleaner, a plumber or a teacher, is working over one month full time each year just to pay for the welfare of another Australian,”

    Really, is there some trickery in Hockey’s statement here?]

    So “over” 8.3% of full time work

    So 35(+) minutes per day for a 35 hour week?

    And more efficient than the 10% Church tithe…

  21. FarQU

    [“The publicly funded health system must be sustainable.

    “By introducing a co-payment for Medicare we are able to build a $20 billion Medical Research Future Fund that in the next decade will double medical research funding in Australia.

    “This is fair.”]

    A 20 Billion dollar research fund is going to make medicare sustainable?

    It’s not a question of fair or unfair, Joe, it’s a question of stupidity.

  22. zoidlord

    sortius ‏@sortius 11m

    .@littlesteve @mansillo it’s becoming clear this budget is designed to essentially kill off low income earners/unemployed

  23. Thomas. Paine.

    Hokey is an interesting case study of somebody growing into a deluded world of self-importance.

    You can see the transformation…manicured hair for image, pin stripe suits, cigars, pompous, bombastic, arrogant and thoroughly out of touch with reality.

    He really is like one of those banksters depicted in Yes Minister.

    I can imagine he is conned along by his corporate mates who must meet and ring him all the time to pat him on the back, and play to his self importance, make him feel ‘one of them’, all the while laughing at the ease in which he is made a useful fool.

    Hokey is become just about everything the general public despise and only saved by the remnance of the old jovial joe image of times past.

    Abbott is increasingly disliked, and I can will be seen as a lying, ignorant, thick-head thug.

    But Hokey, he wont just be disliked, he will in the end be despised. He is developing the persona that whilst funny in comedy tv, in real life is considered disgusting.

    The guy has the air of looking down on everybody and everything, that he is not there for the democracy that elected him, but to pursue his own ends – self-importance is all that he appears to be interested in, and to maintain the delusion he needs to cater to those who play his ego in the corporate world.

    Of course it will end badly for Hokey. His corporate mates will leave him like a rag dole on the side of the road once his useful idiot status is gone.

    The persona he has built for himself should be a gift from god to cartoonists. They should get to work, he is an easy subject.

    AND like true fool that he has become, his need to pander to his self importance is so great that he doesn’t even realise he should right now STFU and let Abbott destroy himself…so he might be popular enough to replace him.

  24. victoria

    Video of Harry Waxman congressman interviewed by SFerguson on 7.30 re climafe change policy

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-06-11/waxman-on-abbotts-climate-stance-ahead-of-obama-meeting/5515702

    Night all

  25. liyana

    I have been trying to get my head around the Abbott- climate change bloc speech in Canad-ia, all day.. But I can’t see any sense in it at all.

    If China and the US sign up for Carbon pricing, then surely an anti carbon pricing stance will risk Australia becoming a pariah, and then inevitably there will be penalties and perhaps boycotts on our products?

    How on earth can Abbott be so reckless? Hasn’t he considered these points? Is he really so beholden to big coal?

    There is no need to espouse a belief in climate change to recognise the possible economic benefits of renewable energy and the possibilities of penalties if you defy the way the US and China are going…Incomprehensible…

  26. FarQU

    [“The average working Australian, be they a cleaner, a plumber or a teacher, is working over one month full time each year just to pay for the welfare of another Australian,”]

    The average cleaner earns about $36,000 pa, $3,000 per month and pays about $300 per month tax.

    The one at my work earns less than that. I’m not sure whether Jo thinks these people earn too much and need to have their incomes cut.

  27. deblonay

    For those interested in Cantor defeat in Primary ballot
    He rode the Tiger…and was devouried
    +++++++++++

    Cantor is/was no favourite of the US Conservative Mag/site

    His defeat brings a warning for Repubs who flirt with the Tea Party as he seems to have done.earlier…only to be defeated by an even more extreme right-winger in the primary

    They say he “rode the Tea Party Tiger…which devoured him in the end ”
    Far from being a “moderate”: Repub(whatever that may look like,he was linked to peoploe like Sheldon Adelson who runs the Repub Jewish Coalition(“The richest jew in the US”as he boasts,and he funds those he likes…who must also love Israel..or no cash)

    Adelson also wants a “lower wage ” structure…in a country where the working poor is already a major reality
    Cantor ran along with this crowd,who finally found an even more extreme candidate than he

    BTW The US Conservative,is an interesting Mag..and tgis article follows much of their anti-Tea Party line
    They think the T-Party is mad,and they object to the way Adelson and his gang have made support for Israel central to US policies in the M.East…and Adelson is bitterly anti-union,allowing none in his many enterprises

    The” Amercon” says the Tea Party nutters will make the Repiubs unelectable,and they are probably right
    The guy that defeated Cantor is even more extreme as they tend to be

    Shed no tears for Cantor however…and do read this critique of hime in The Amercon mag.

    http://www.theamericanconservative.com/eric-cantor-rides-tiger-is-devoured/
    ____________________________

  28. zoidlord

    @FarQU/2748

    IS that including GST in goods? or excluding GST goods?

  29. briefly

    Hockey claims…

    [The average working Australian, be they a cleaner, a plumber or a teacher, is working over one month full time each year just to pay for the welfare of another Australian.]

    In 2012/13, according to the Treasury budget papers and the ABS, the combined social security and welfare provision was $131.9 billion, including Family Tax Benefits. This was 8.6% of GDP, which totaled $1,525 billion. The wages share of the economy was estimated by the ABS at 53%.

    So while one-eighth of the economy was distributed to welfare of all kinds, just over half of this can be attributed to employee compensation.

    Rather than working one month a year to support each other, Australians notionally work one fortnight each year to support each other. The balance of welfare costs are borne by other parts of the economy, including business profits.

  30. Just Me

    [2744
    zoidlord

    sortius ‏@sortius 11m

    .@littlesteve @mansillo it’s becoming clear this budget is designed to essentially kill off low income earners/unemployed]

    It’s a cull.

  31. FarQU

    Income tax

  32. FarQU

    So half of it is bullshit from the beginning.

    And if you take away the portion that the average income earner gets back in welfare, we’d be down to something less than a fortnight. 10 or 12 days so that most of us can live in something reasonable. Joe Hockey would destroy that so a few people can get even richer.

  33. Thomas. Paine.

    Joe wants to see tent cities surrounding suburbs..which he will get once the new recession gets under way.

  34. briefly

    grrr..one-twelfth of the economy was distributed as welfare…

  35. kezza2

    Hey, Joe Hockey
    [The average working Australian, be they a cleaner, a plumber or a teacher, is working over one month full time each year just to pay for the welfare of another Australian,”]

    Heard of holiday pay, douchebag?

    The average working Australian, be they a cleaner, a plumber or a teacher, is working one month full time each year just to pay for “their own fucking break”

    GIVE US A BREAK

    FROM YOUR LIES

  36. kezza2

    Sorry bout that. I sorta went all Showsy.

    Then again that could just be a champagne argument.

  37. imacca

    [ Sorry bout that. I sorta went all Showsy. ]

    Don’t think you have anything to apologize for. Trying to get your head around some of the lies and spin JoHo tires to peddle will do that to people.

    Probably better to just assume that if his mouth is moving he’s talking crap that only the blue kool aid addicts will swallow. On his current form you stand a remarkably good chance of being correct.

  38. zoidlord

    Gov going wrong way on Piracy: iiNet

    http://delimiter.com.au/2014/06/11/govt-going-wrong-piracy-path-says-iinet/

    ” suspect most Australians will find it hard to disagree with Dalby that the solution to the Internet piracy issue needs to be a commercial one — not a regulatory one. Pretty much all attempts to regulate the Internet have failed over the past there decades. I am amused and saddened that the attempts keep coming. Many people, it seems, still don’t understand the depth and importance of the technological revolution which Earth is permanently engaged in now.”

    Which is part of the Anti-Technology, Anti-Science, Anti-Socialism, Anti-welfare.

    It’s all about Profitism for this Government.

  39. imacca

    [ Gawd just seen Hockey at the Sydney Institute on Lateline. ]
    You wont do that again in a hurry will you?? 🙂

    [ Lecturing the poor and middle income people on their obligation to help balance the budget. Sheer. Bloody. Hypocrisy. ]

    I think he is following on from his leaders theme on selling the budget. You know the one where Tony told us if we were not so fwarking stupid we would have known that they were going to screw over every body except the rich??

    I can see that working for them really well in the polling stakes.

    [ AND like true fool that he has become, his need to pander to his self importance is so great that he doesn’t even realise he should right now STFU and let Abbott destroy himself…so he might be popular enough to replace him. ]

    Ye Gads! TP posts something i can completely agree with!!

  40. leon

    A jigger is a cue rest used in billiards and snooker. It should not be confused with a thingomajigger which is not used in billiards or snooker.

  41. Otiose

    Nett_News++™ by @Otiose94 http://bit.ly/1nAtjp1 @rupertmurdoch tells #abbott “Just Do it”, by @rowe_david © http://bit.ly/1jkvzM2

  42. B.C.

    The other name for the Jack is Kitty. Hence the lawn bowl joke about Kitty and Jack

  43. Puff, the Magic Dragon.

    Boerwar,
    I have never heard that word used for any sporting equipment in all of my life. In fact I have rarely heard it used at all for anything. I think we had our own homegrown racist terms without need for USA ones, to be honest about it. I vaguely recall some old product labels and of course those rag dolls called gollywogs. I think the lolly cigerettes we bought as kids, the licorice ones, not the sugar ones, had a gollywog on the label. Other than that the only time i heard it was on tv in American movies.

  44. absolutetwaddle

    I don’t know what some of you people gain by going out of your way to watch pressers and doorstops by the likes of Joe Hockey.

    “Oh look, there’s Joe Hockey lecturing the poor on how entitled they are again. Oh boy, I do hope he starts talking about dole bludgers and the parasites on the DSP, that would cement even more cholesterol to my dangerously narrowed, stress-damaged arteries! What’s that? Cory Bernardi, Andrew Bolt, Sophie Mirabella, Francisco Franco and Sarah Palin are tonight’s guests on Q&A? SOMEONE PASS THE REMOTE!”

    You’ll be a happier person just reading the headline version, trust me.

  45. sprocket_

    Murdoch organs have gone into peak Abbott government hagiography mode, following Rupert’s pleasure at 2.5 hr arse kissing by our supplicant PM in NY.

    Abbott’s Uni pal and fellow Bob Santamaria disciple Greg Sheridan leads the way, able to merge the Abbott global triumph with a smack down of Fairfax and the ABC

    http://t.co/mHjmUmDiJ4

  46. Phil Vee

    File under the heading of useless information;
    When I was taught how to play golf in the early Seventies, my Scottish instructor gave me a club called a jigger. It was between a putter and a 1 iron to be used when your ball was on the edge of green. I remember using it a lot.

    Thanks to briefly for his concise demolition of Hockey’s nonsense .

  47. Boerwar

    For the Wesst, the preferred solution to hold Iraq together is a dictator with a vicious nasty streak who hates islamists.

    But they are a bit scarcer than they used to be.

  48. CTar1

    Tikrit taken.

    It’s all rosey after the democratic election in Iraq.

  49. Diogenes

    34 Essendon players issued with infraction notices.

    Ouch.

    This is going to take years.