WHITSUNDAYS DECIDES 2019: By George he's won it
THE successes of George Christensen and Michelle Landry added to the lustre of what has been a famous night for the Liberal-National Coalition.
Mr Christensen will embark on a fourth term in Canberra following what will be a resounding and famous triumph in the seat of Dawson.
The incumbent has attracted 32,534 first preference votes (43.03 per cent), which translated to a two-party preferred has Mr Christensen ahead 64.69 to 32.31 ahead of Labor candidate Belinda Hassan.
Mr Christensen touched on the issues that counted in the minds of voters when he faced the media in Mackay tonight.
"There was a lot of mud thrown around, but I think voters see that for what it is," Mr Christensen said.
"The issues that shone through were all about local jobs.
"(They) were all about coal mining, a tax on farming, all about the Bob Brown convoy coming up here, how close the Labor Party is to the Green movement now."
Ms Hassan has hovered around 20 per cent first preference all night.
There has been a swing of more than 13 per cent against the Labor Party and Mr Christensen actually has had a swing of 0.75 to him.
One Nation's Deb Lawson has been in third spot all night with 13.05 per cent of first preferences.
Katter's Australian Party's Brendan Bunyan is at 6.28 per cent in fourth, ahead of United Australian Party candidate Colin Thompson (4.92 per cent).
Greens hopeful Imogen Lindenberg has pollled 4.25 per cent, with DLP's Ann-Maree Ware (3.12), independent Lachlan Queenan (2.74) and Anning's Michael Turner (1.97).
In Capricornia, Michelle Landry has a first preference vote of 40.30 per cent and will be heading to Canberra for a third term.
Ms Landry has attracted 24,714 votes, nearly 10,000 clear of nearest rival Russell Robertson (Labor).
On a two-party preferred, Ms Landry leads 62.68 per cent to 37.32 per cent.
One Nation's Wade Rothery has attracted 16.80 per cent to be a clear third.
Greens contender Paul Bambrick is fourth on 5.26 per cent, with Lindsay Sturgeon, George Birkbeck, Ken Murray, Grant Pratt and Richard Temple rounding out the vote.
8.45PM: STICK a fork in it.
The race for Dawson is done and dusted.
The LNP's George Christensen at least from a political point of view he's made of Teflon and will now prepare for his fourth term in Canberra.
On a big night so far for the Coalition, the incumbent has powered to one of his more famous victories.
Christensen has attracted 41.61 per cent of first preferences with 48,424 votes counted.
On a two-party preferred basis, he leads Belinda Hassan 64.98 per cent to 35.02 per cent.
Right now 41 of the 51 booths in Dawson, an electorate that has 105,624 voters enrolled, have been returned.
Labor contender Hassan has attracted 20.17 per cent of the vote.
As at 8.45pm, that is a swing against of 12.94 against the Labor Party on the 2016 election.
Deb Lawson (One Nation) continues to hold third spot with 13.24 per cent.
In Capricornia, Michelle Landry's margin has closed somewhat.
The seat has been called by a number of television outlets, with Landry currently having 37.70 per cent of the first preference vote.
Labor's Russell Robertson is at 25.21 per cent, while One Nation's Wade Rothery has polled 17.02 per cent and sits in third place.
8PM: George Christensen looks right on track for a fourth term in parliament.
The incumbent LNP member has 41.03 per cent of the 36,988 votes counted, having had a swing against of little more than one per cent.
All the booths in the Whitsundays - Cannonvale, Hamilton Island, Proserpine, Bloomsbury, Bowen, Queens Beach and Merinda - have been returned.
At the moment, 37 of the 51 booths have been returned.
Christensen remains more than 20 per cent clear of nearest rival Belinda Hassan (Labor), who has made some slight inroads.
She has attracted 20.87 per cent of the vote, but has suffered a swing against of more than 12 per cent.
One Nation's Deb Lawson retains third place on 13.10 per cent, although that figure has dropped a touch with the bigger booths starting to make their mark.
Brendan Bunyan (KAP) is at 6.43 per cent.
Greens candidate Imogen Lindenberg has climbed to fifth with 5.35 per cent of the vote, just ahead of United Australia Party's Colin Thompson (5.05 per cent).
Ann-Maree Ware (3.25) , Lachlan Queenan (2.77) and Michael Turner (2.14 per cent).
In Capricornia, Michelle Landry has 37.99 per cent of the 30,726 votes returned.
She is well-ahead of Labor's Russell Robertson (25.08) and One Nation's Wade Rothery (16.78).
7.30PM: George Christensen's numbers continue to get stronger as the night draws on.
Twenty booths have been returned with 14,076 votes counted.
The incumbent LNP member has polled 5740 votes (43.90 per cent).
Booths counted include Bowen, Giru, Home Hill, Mount Pleasant and Mackay South.
Going by the two-party preferred Christensen is tracking at 63.49 per cent on the two-party preferred vote.
Leading contender Belinda Hassan (Labor) has 18.34 per cent of the vote.
Deb Lawson (One Nation) is third at 13.41 per cent with Brendan Bunyan (KAP) fourth at 8.61 and Colin Thompson (United Australia Party) at 5.19 per cent.
In Capricornia, Sky News already called the seat for incumbent Michelle Landry.
A total of 24 booths have been returned with Landry at 39.97 per cent of the 14,887 votes counted.
Russell Robertson (Labor) is at 23.15 per cent and One Nation's Wade Rothery in third (16.86 per cent).
7.15PM: The solid numbers for incumbent George Christensen continue in Dawson.
Thirteen booths have been returned including Bowen, Queens Beach and Merinda.
Christensen has polled 2966 votes (43.22 per cent) of the 7341 votes counted.
Leading rival Belinda Hassan has polled 18.57 per cent of the vote, slighly higher than One Nation's Deb Lawson.
Lawson is clearly the third elect at 13.36 per cent.
Brendan Bunyan (KAP) has 9.15 per cent of the votes.
Other booths returned are Ayr, Bloomsbury, Brandon, Calen, Cungulla, Farleigh, Hampden, Jarvisfield, Kalamia and Slade Point.
In Capricornia, 13 booths have been returned, including Collinsville.
Incumbent Michelle Landry is tracking at 38.22 per cent of the vote, clear of Labor's Russell Robertson (23.99) and One Nation's Wade Rothery (17.35).
7PM: George Christensen has experienced a strong start to counting in the seat of Dawson.
The LNP incumbent is tracking at 42.38 per cent of the 3537 votes returned so far.
Booths returned so far are Bloomsbury, Calen, Slade Point, Brandon, Cungulla, Hampden, Jarvisfield and Queens Beach.
His top challenger for the seat, Belinda Hassan has so far polled 20.05 per cent.
One Nation's Deb Lawson is the clear third-elect right now with 14.31 per cent of the vote, with Brendan Bunyan (KAP) tracking at 7.83 per cent.
In Capricornia, three votes have been counted with solid start for Michelle Landry.
The incumbent has attracted 331 votes (42.17 per cent).
Another bright start has come from One Nation's Wade Rothery, who has polled 27.52 per cent of the votes returned in Swayneville, Carmila and Eton.
Labor's Russell Robertson is on 11.59 per cent of the vote.
6.45PM: Five polling booths have been returned in Dawson with 1778 votes counted.
Incumbent George Christensen (LNP) is off to a good start with 817 votes (45.95 per cent) of first preferences.
Labor's Belinda Hassan has 307 votes (17.27 per cent)
Katter's Australian Party contender Brendan Bunyan and One Nation's Deb Turner are tracking at more than 10 per cent of the early vote.
Colin Thompson (United Australia Party) is next at 4.22 per cent from Ann-Maree Ware (DLP), Imogen Lindenberg (Greens), Michael Turner (Anning) and independent Lachlan Queenan.
The booths counted so far are Brandon, Cungulla, Hampden, Jarvisfield and Queens Beach.
6.30PM: The first lot of votes are in for Dawson.
196 votes have been counted with George Christensen (76) and Belinda Hassan (53) as expected in the early lead.
Katter's Australian Party hope Brendan Bunyan was third with 22 first preference votes, then One Nation's Deb Lawson (18).
Independent Lachlan Queenan (3) is lower than the DLP's Ann-Maree Ware and Anning hopeful Michael Turner.
6PM: The polling booths across the Whitsundays have just closed and all eyes are now on how the votes will fall.
If you trust the bookmakers, incumbent George Christensen (LNP) is fancied to win a fourth term in Dawson from Labor candidate Belinda Hassan.
Strong money during the past week or so moved Mr Christensen from the second-elect to a $1.55 favourite before markets closed.
In Capricornia, incumbent Michelle Landry (LNP) appears to face a task to retain the seat from Labor challenger Russell Robertson.
Robertson was the top fancy at $1.63, with Landry a $2.10 hope when markets closed.
EARLIER: PEOPLE across the Whitsundays region were out in force today to vote in the Federal Election.
Those in the seat of Dawson made their vote count at booths in Bowen, Proserpine, Cannonvale, Hamilton Island and Merinda, while Collinsville residents made their mark on the race for Capricornia.
In his hometown of Cannonvale, United Australia Party candidate Colin Thompson said he was expecting the vote to be a close one in Dawson.
"This is a knife edge," he said.
"It's going to come down to preferences.
"There is no gauge on this one at all."
Lengthy lines at Cannonvale allowed locals the chance to contemplate their vote and take the chance to tuck into a democracy sausage.
The snags might have been missing at Proserpine, but a cake stall run by the Uniting Church proved popular with voters.
Chocolate fudge and fruit cake proved popular items.
Jean Porter, one of three ladies manning the stall, said it was a fundraiser.
"We're raising money to put a new ceiling in the Uniting Church after Cyclone Debbie paid us a visit," she said.
In Bowen, two polling venues were in action, the Bowen PCYC and Queens Beach State School.
There was a convivial atmosphere out the front of the PCYC as locals said they were excited to find out the results of the election.
Party supporters were happy to talk and joke amongst themselves with supporters of different parties, showing that even in tense political moments that Bowen is still a friendly town.
Incumbent MP George Christensen (LNP) is fancied to win a fourth term in Canberra.
He was the $1.55 favourite with UTAB, ahead of Labor candidate Belinda Hassan at $2.30.
In Capricornia, Labor's Russell Robertson is the top fancy at $1.63, with the LNP's Michelle Landry, the incumbent, at $2.10.