Campbell Newman will win Ashgrove, and the Liberal National Party will win the election so comfortably they won’t even notice it going down.
As they should. Like the federal Labor Party, Anna Bligh has nothing but failure to offer in terms of policy and outcomes.
She seems to have believed that a few nasty allegations about Campbell Newman, made on the basis of no evidence whatever, would distract voters and incline them to vote for her. She could only have been assuming that Queensland voters are much like her. She has seriously misunderestimated the people of Queensland.
Campbell Newman will be a good premier. He is compassionate, speaks well, has years of administrative experience, and understands how wealth is generated.
He is not a social conservative. But for now, I am happy to settle for a fiscal conservative who is also a good leader and an honest man.
As for tonight’s results, the outcome will be roughly 69 for the LNP, 14 for Labor, 4 for Bob Katter’s Australian Party, and two independents.
I notice that Laurie Oakes has written an article about Labor’s collapse in Queensland without suggesting it is all Tony Abbott’s fault. He even draws parallels between Bligh’s prevarications and Gillard’s. Well done Laurie!
6.00pm in Queensland. Exit polls are suggesting an even bigger swing against Labor than the 10% I figured in my predictions. It is possible Labor could win less than ten seats. That would be an unprecedented humiliation for a major Australian party, and a kick in the head for the federal Labor Party and the Prime Minister.
7.15pm in Qld. This is not just a landslide, it’s a meltdown. Congratulations Campbell Newman and the LNP. Rudd has been in the limelight in Qld over the last few days. Without his campaigning things might have been even worse for Labor. Julia Gillard must be worried now.
7.45pm. The ABC is now predicting 75 seats for the LNP and 10 for Labor. Ouch! The key ALP seats of Nudgee, Logan and Ipswich look almost certain to go the LNP. Anna Bligh looks likely to hang on (just – with Greens preferences) in South Brisbane. Overall a slight fall in votes for the Greens. Interesting.
8.15pm. The ABC now predicting 77 for the LNP, 8 for Labor. Even Stretton, held with a 9.5% margin, will fall to the LNP. Woodridge, held by the ALP with a 24% margin, had a swing to the LNP of over 20%. Overall, the swing against Labor is holding steady at just under 16%. Deputy Premier and Treasurer Andrew Fraser is gone. Hard to feel sad about that.
9pm. Rob Katter has taken Mt Isa from the ALP. A mighty win for Bob Katter’s son in what has long been a Labor stronghold. The LNP might even win Mackay, depending on the strength of Katter preferences. Unthinkable until tonight. It looks like the LNP’s Anne Maddern has taken Maryborough from independent Chris Foley. Mixed feelings about that one – Chris is a decent bloke and has worked hard for Maryborough. It looks like Rob Messenger in Burnett made a bad choice when he resigned from the National Party to stand as an independent. Burnett will go the LNP on Katter preferences. The ABC now predicting 78 to 7, with 4 to Katter and the independents. The Greens still slightly down overall. No seats for them. Bob will be disappointed.
9.45pm. It’s all over. The worst defeat for a governing party in Australia’s history. The ABC is still predicting 78 to 7. Labor’s 7 includes Bulimba, which I think is too close to call and may yet go to the LNP’s Aaron Dillaway, who is ahead 3% on primary votes, and Mackay, which as mentioned above, may still go to the LNP on Katter preferences. The end result could easily be 79 to 6, with two for Katter and two independents. (A later note – I was wrong about this. The ABC’s prediction is for Labor to win one of Bulimba or Mackay, not both, so the end figure probably will be 78 to 7). I was way off with 69 to 14. But I don’t think anyone realised till tonight just how smelly the Labor brand has become.
Gracious comments from Campbell Newman, thanking Anna Bligh for her service to Queensland:
“Particularly, I think it’s appropriate this evening that we all thank her and acknowledge her inspirational leadership during the 2011 floods and Cyclone Yasi,” he said. “I also want to acknowledge my opponent Kate Jones, for her services to the people of Ashgrove since she has been elected member.”