Jackie Trad needs to find 2000 extra votes at state election
Jackie Trad needs to find 2000 extra votes at state election

Numbers game: What Trad needs to win

Jackie Trad, perhaps the highest profile Government backbencher to ever contest a Queensland election, needs to find 2000 new friends. And fast.

That's roughly the number of extra first preference votes she'll need by October 31 to prevent the Greens' Amy MacMahon from ousting her from the seat of South Brisbane.

It's certainly not impossible for the controversial former deputy premier and treasurer but it's going to be tough.

An extra 2000 votes represents a swing to Trad of about seven per cent, far in excess of what opinion polls show Labor is likely to achieve statewide.

It would take Trad's primary vote to 42 per cent, which she achieved during the 2015 rout of the Newman government.

South Brisbane MP Jackie Trad at a protest in Kangaroo Point last week. Picture: Peter Wallis
South Brisbane MP Jackie Trad at a protest in Kangaroo Point last week. Picture: Peter Wallis

Her need for such a big primary swing is because the LNP has broken with tradition to preference the Greens above Labor in South Brisbane at this election.

There has been much conjecture about whether LNP voters would follow how-to-vote cards that put Labor last.

The assumption has been that because this would be anathema to the principles of many voters, the LNP strategy to end Trad's tumultuous political career was unlikely to work.

However, 38 per cent of LNP voters in South Brisbane preferenced the Greens above Labor at the 2017 Queensland election when how-to-vote cards didn't advise this.

So what happens when they do?

While there's no Queensland precedent, the Victorian examples of when this has occurred would suggest Trad's days are numbered.

In 2006 Victorian election when the Liberals preferenced the Greens over Labor in four inner-suburban seats, about 75 per cent on average followed the how-to-vote card.

At the 2010 Federal election, it was 80 per cent in the seat of Melbourne.

Trad's challenge isn't impossible but the figures certainly suggest it's improbable.

Originally published as Numbers game: What Trad needs to win


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