CANDIDATES: Paul Tully and Andrew Antoniolli during the height of the 2017 mayoral by-election.
CANDIDATES: Paul Tully and Andrew Antoniolli during the height of the 2017 mayoral by-election. David Nielsen

Will Ipswich vote for councillors after state declares war?

IF IPSWICH City Council divisions are removed will it significantly affect the re-election chances of the 11 dismissed councillors?

Much has been said about whether divisions really are the best way forward for Ipswich.

Many in the State Government are eager to make it as difficult as possible for the old councillors, particularly those who served under the Paul Pisasale regime, to be re-elected in 2020.

The strongest weapon in the state's arsenal is its exclusive ability to draw the battlefields.

As William Shakespeare might say if he knew of the CCC's investigation; to divide or not to divide, that is the question.

Debate about whether to keep council divisions or have them removed has split state politicians and some former councillors.

In an undivided council, the top 10 candidates across the region would be victorious.

Would an undivided council hinder the re-election chances of Ipswich's 11 dismissed councillors?

A good indicator can be found in the booth results of 2017 mayoral candidates Paul Tully and Andrew Antoniolli.

Both were councillors with a strong grip on their divisions; two and seven respectively.

Both were required to take their campaign across the whole Local Government area for the mayoral by-election.

Mr Tully won 16 booths across the city while Mr Antoniolli won 28.

The latter was elected mayor with 34.5 per cent of the vote compared to Mr Tully's 30.83 per cent.

Mr Antoniolli won all seven of the booths in his home division.

Mr Tully won all five booths in the division he held since amalgamation in 1995.

He was victorious at every booth from Bundamba to the east of the Ipswich area; the neighbouring suburbs to his Goodna-based division two electorate.

Aside from a victory at the small Granchester booth - with 95 total votes compared to Mr Antoniolli's 67 - Mr Tully's brand in the west was diminished.

In addition to his home CBD booths; Mr Antoniolli won Rosewood, Brassall, Walloon, Yamanto, Silkstone and Karalee.

The candidates' chances diminish when you move away from their home base.

The results prove if former councillors do stand again, they will need more than the few thousand local supporters to win the election.

People like David Pahlke - Rosewood's favourite grandfather - will need a strong result from the progressives at Springfield for election.

On the flip-side, the strong name recognition of former councillors may give them enough votes to overcome new challengers.

It was misleading for the Department of Local Government to claim in the QT last week only administrator Greg Chemello could ask for a review into the council's electoral boundaries.

Any Local Government Minister can order the change commission to review a council's boundaries at any time.

The State Government has a strong say on the make-up of the electoral war zone.

Rest assured it will use that weapon.



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