Political commentator's insights into race for Capricornia
IT is almost impossible to pick a winner for the tightly contested seat of Capricornia going into this weekend's federal election but a political commentator's expert analysis has provided us with some valuable insights.
Holding the seat by a razor thin margin of 0.6 per cent, Capricornia's LNP member of parliament Michelle Landry swept past Labor' candidate Russell Robertson in recent weeks into favouritism with the bookies.
According to the latest Ladbrokes odds, the scales have tipped again with the two leading candidates neck and neck as equal favourites, paying $1.83.
Beyond them, Ladbrokes have One Nation's Wade Rothery paying $26 in third place, The Greens' Paul Bambrick paying $34 and the United Australia Party's Lindsey Sturgeon paying $41.
Sportsbet has One Nation's coming in from $21 a few weeks ago to $12 with Independent Ken Murray blowing out in the odds from an initial $12 at the start of the campaign to $26 now.
Political commentator and UQ lecturer Dr Chris Salisbury said it was unsurprising that a marginal seat like Capricornia would be so close at this stage of the election campaign.
While he expected the major parties to "split the spoils” in the lower house, Dr Salisbury said the right leaning minor parties would create an unpredictability in the final result due to their preference flows, generally expected to favour the LNP.
One Nation were anticipated to do well and repeat their Queensland Election result but it was unknown how much damage they suffered from the 'guns for funds' scandal.
Katter's Australia Party, Fraser Anning's Conservative National Party and Clive Palmer's United Australia Party were all expected to eat into One Nation's votes.
Dr Salisbury acknowledged seasoned campaigner Ms Landry's experience and electioneering efforts which helped propel her into equal favourite position.
"I think the timing of the election, so quickly after the federal budget, plays into the government's ambition to capitalise on positives coming out of those budget announcements,” he said.
"There were some offerings for regional Queensland and that's borne some fruit for places like Capricornia.”
Ms Landry also capitalised upon some uncertainty towards Labor created by "mixed messaging or not entirely consistent messaging”.
While Dr Salisbury admitted he hadn't seen much of equal-favourite Mr Robertson in action, but believed the Labor man's protracted campaigning efforts over the past 15 months, strongly backed by the party, could get him across the line.