It took the landslide defeats of the Whitlam and Keating governments to loosen Labor’s grip on the central Queensland seat of Capricornia. The risk of a repeat has increased with the recently announced retirement of sitting member Kirsten Livermore.
There have been suggestions that the electorate of John Curtin might be lost to Labor at the next election as part of a statewide conservative sweep, although they have faded with Labor’s recent improvement in the polls.
With the change in the state’s political breeze recently, Labor is hungrily eyeing Queensland as a potential source of seats to counterbalance anticipated losses in Sydney. An inner-city seat with the LNP’s lowest margin represents an obvious target.
William Bowe is a doctoral candidate with the University of Western Australia’s Discipline of Political Science and International Relations. He has been running the electoral studies blog The Poll Bludger since January 2004, independently until September 2008 and thereafter with Crikey.