Electoral district of Mundingburra

Mundingburra is an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly in the Australian state of Queensland. It is currently held by Labor Party MP Coralee O'Rourke.

QueenslandLegislative Assembly
Map of the electoral district of Mundingburra, 2017
MPCoralee O'Rourke
Electors33,058 (2017)
Area104 km2 (40.2 sq mi)
Coordinates19°18′S 146°46′E
Electorates around Mundingburra:
Townsville Townsville Coral Sea
Thuringowa Mundingburra Burdekin
Thuringowa Burdekin Burdekin


The seat is one of four within the Townsville urban area in North Queensland. Significant utilities within the Mundingburra electorate are the Townsville Hospital, the Douglas Campus of James Cook University and Stockland Shoppingcentre. Suburbs of the Electorate include; Heatley, Cranbrook, Aitkenvale, Mundingburra, Vincent, Douglas, Annandale, Gulliver, Mysterton, Rosslea, part of Kirwan and Pimlico north of the Ross River.[1][2]

Mundingburra Electorate is bordered by the Burdekin (South), Townsville (North and East) and Thuringowa (West) Electorates.[3]

Electoral history

The first incarnation of the Mundingburra electorate was created at the 1911 redistribution, encompassing parts of the former electorates of Herbert and Bowen. It was a historically Labor seat, but from 1944 onwards was held by North Queensland Labor Party MP Tom Aikens. It changed significantly in a 1949 redistribution, and was abolished in 1959, with most of the district becoming part of the new Townsville South electorate.

1996 by-election

The Mundingburra electoral district attracted national attention and headlines in early 1996 with a by-election called after the Court of Disputed Returns declared the result in the seat from July 1995 election void. The result had taken over a week to determine and ended up with the incumbent member, Ken Davies of the Labor Party, winning by 16 votes.[4] This gave the Goss government a one-seat majority in Parliament - 45 seats to the Coalition's 43 and one conservative-leaning independent, Liz Cunningham. Davies was subsequently appointed as Minister for Emergency Services and Consumer Affairs.

The Liberals challenged the result in August and on 8 December, the court ordered a new election, partly on the basis that administrative difficulties had deprived several military personnel serving in Rwanda of their vote. It was generally understood that the fate of the Goss government likely rested on the result, and Goss himself was prominent in it, announcing amongst other things a A$1 billion Korean zinc smelter for Townsville and asking voters to end the uncertainty "bedevilling" the Queensland political system. An expected federal election in March 1996 where the unpopular Keating Government (also Labor) would face the voters was a key feature in the background.[5]

Things became somewhat chaotic when Labor, on the basis of internal polling data and a legal case between Davies and the Commonwealth Bank, decided to drop Davies as its endorsed candidate, selecting Tony Mooney, the mayor of Townsville in his place. Davies reacted angrily, ultimately running as an independent and generating a considerable level of media publicity. A total of 12 candidates supporting a raft of causes ended up nominating by the draw of ballot papers on 12 January. On 25 January, Keating called the federal election for 2 March, which Goss described as an "outside distraction".[5]

Contradictory polls generally suggested the Coalition would win, although a late poll by AGB McNair two days before polling day suggested Labor could still win. However, on the day, a swing of 2.83% to the Liberals saw their candidate Frank Tanti, a shop manager and committed Christian who had run a low-level doorknocking campaign for months, win the by-election. Within days, it became clear that Independent Liz Cunningham would support the Coalition, and the Goss government resigned, allowing Rob Borbidge to form a minority government which lasted until the 1998 election. At that election, Labor, under Peter Beattie, won back both Mundingburra and governing party status.[5]

Members for Mundingburra

First incarnation (1912–1960)
  Thomas Foley Labor 1912–1920
  John Dash Labor 1920–1944
  Tom Aikens North Queensland Labor 1944–1960
Second incarnation (1992–present)
  Ken Davies Labor 1992–1995
  Frank Tanti Liberal 1996–1998
  Lindy Nelson-Carr Labor 1998–2012
  David Crisafulli Liberal National 2012–2015
  Coralee O'Rourke Labor 2015–present

Election results

2017 Queensland state election: Mundingburra[6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labor Coralee O'Rourke 8,768 31.4 −6.0
Liberal National Matthew Derlagen 7,290 26.1 −14.5
One Nation Mal Charlwood 4,652 16.7 +15.5
Katter's Australian Mike Abraham 3,874 13.9 +10.8
Greens Jenny Brown 2,130 7.6 +0.7
Independent Dennis Easzon 468 1.7 +1.7
Independent Alan Birrell 365 1.3 +1.3
Independent Geoff Virgo 360 1.3 +1.3
Total formal votes 27,907 95.1 −2.6
Informal votes 1,423 4.9 +2.6
Turnout 29,330 86.8 −3.9
Two-party-preferred result
Labor Coralee O'Rourke 14,268 51.1 −0.7
Liberal National Matthew Derlagen 13,639 48.9 +0.7
Labor hold Swing −0.7


  1. "ABC Electorate guide". Retrieved 16 December 2006.
  2. "Team Beattie Electorate guide". Archived from the original on 29 August 2007. Retrieved 16 December 2006.
  3. "Electoral Commission of Queensland map of Electorate" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 September 2006. Retrieved 15 December 2006.
  4. "Newman, Gerard, Queensland election 1995. Aust Parliamentary Library research note Number 28" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 13 September 2006. Retrieved 16 December 2006.
  5. Wanna, John (December 1996). "Australian Political Chronicle: January–June 1996". Australian Journal of Politics and History. 42 (3): 419–421. ISSN 0004-9522.
  6. 2017 State General Election - Mundingburra - District Summary, ECQ.
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