One Nation leader Pauline Hanson has criticised Annastacia Palaszczuk’s decision to call a Queensland election, labelling the premier ‘cowardly’.
Ms Hanson posted on Twitter moments after the Queensland premier arrived at Government House on Sunday, accusing Ms Palaszczuk of waiting until she was overseas to make the decision to call an early election.
‘Seems a cowardly Anna Palaszczuk decided to wait until I was out of the country to cancel on her grandma & call a snap election,’ Ms Hanson wrote, despite Ms Palaszczuk arriving at Government House after she’d spent time with her elderly grandmother earlier on Sunday morning.
One Nation leader Pauline Hanson has criticised Annastacia Palaszczuk’s decision to call a Queensland election, labelling the premier ‘cowardly’
Ms Hanson posted on Twitter Sunday accusing Ms Palaszczuk of waiting until she was overseas to make the decision to call an early election
The resurrection of One Nation is set to cause electoral chaos for both Labor and the opposition in the Queensland election but party officials face a number of obstacles in order to ditch their minority status.
Cast as a formidable force by wary government and LNP strategists, Pauline Hanson’s party is expected to makes gains in a poll that will be decided by disenchanted regional voters crippled by unemployment and high cost of living.
Key battlegrounds have emerged around the regional cities of Townsville and Cairns, in the state’s north, where the government has been criticised for a lack of jobs and One Nation has found support.
Analysts are united in their prediction One Nation will take votes from the opposition Liberal National Party, but remain uncertain about just how many of its candidates will secure a win.
‘I’d be surprised if they win any seats but they’ll poll significantly in some seats and cause havoc for the major parties,’ ABC electoral analyst Antony Green told AAP.
‘Under full preferential voting they have to be ahead of one of the major parties. They’re not going to get Labor preferences and they may not get LNP preferences.’
Analysts are united in their prediction One Nation will take votes from the opposition Liberal National Party, but remain uncertain about just how many of its candidates will secure a win
Party officials have stood candidates across the state, but are nonetheless focused on urban fringe and regional seats.
The right-wing party experienced a surge in the polls at the end of 2016, but its numbers dipped following a series of gaffes delivered by Senator Hanson and her chief-of-staff, James Ashby.
In the polls, One Nation is averaging 16 per cent backing but in regional Queensland Dr Williams says it’s still 18 to 20 per cent and in some seats ‘it might hit 30 to 40 per cent.’
One Nation state leader Steve Dickson, who defected to the party from the LNP in January, is widely tipped to lose his blue-ribbon Buderim seat.
‘Of all the places to jump ship, that’s not the place to do it, I mean that’s rolled gold, old-fashioned Liberal territory,’ Dr Williams said.
Much of the party’s success, analysts say, will depend on LNP preferencing.