Peter Brent writes in Inside Story (14.7.16) about how the vote – and the Labor state government – in Queensland, where the ALP won far less than the several seats it had targeted there as winnable, influenced the federal election result in the Coalition’s favour. The author argues that the removal of Campbell Newman’s LNP government in February 2015, and Tony Abbott’s removal as Prime Minister some months later, ultimately helped to alleviate any large-scale backlash in Queensland against the federal Coalition government.
‘As Malcolm Turnbull attempts to replenish his depleted party-room authority, the person he can thank most for his re-election is not in federal parliament, nor on his campaign team, nor in his inner or even outer circles.
‘It’s Campbell Newman, whose action-packed tenure as thirty-eighth premier of Queensland lasted from 2012 to 2015.
‘The federal Coalition appears to have scraped together seventy-seven MPs, give or take, in the 150-seat House of Representatives, a working majority of four. When the two-party-preferred vote count is complete, it will aggregate to around 50.6 per cent for the Coalition and 49.4 per cent for Labor.
‘That might seem like a close vote, but since the introduction of preferential voting in 1918, eight federal governments have survived with less national support, and six of those with under 50 per cent.
‘The 3 per cent or so national swing to Labor was made up of these estimated state components (all to Labor): Tasmania 6.0 per cent, South Australia 4.5, New South Wales 3.8, Western Australia 2.7, Queensland 2.6 and Victoria 1.6.
‘Can you spot a pattern?’