Ipswich West MP Jim Madden has held the seat since 2015.
Ipswich West MP Jim Madden has held the seat since 2015.

Everything you need to know about Ipswich West

MORE than 20,000 Ipswich residents have already cast their vote and another 38,000 will do so via a postal vote.

With less than a week until election day on October 31, record numbers of Queenslanders are voting early.

It’s likely down to a combination of COVID-19 concerns and simply hearing enough to have already made up their mind.

As a safe Labor stronghold, Ipswich has not been a major focus for either major party during the campaign, despite a quick visit from Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Priorities lie elsewhere with the battle between Annastacia Palaszczuk and Deb Frecklington expected to be decided by the tightest of margins.

Political experts told the QT that voters are likely to turn to Labor and the LNP to lead the recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, with minor parties such as One Nation and the Greens to suffer as a result.

The big focus for the ALP in Ipswich has been health; $24.5 million has been promised for a drug and alcohol rehab service for the city, as has another $22 million for the current $146 million redevelopment of Ipswich Hospital.

A $40 million satellite hospital will also be built in Ipswich if Labor is re-elected.

The LNP’s major local announcement was a $135 million promise for a new manufacturing facility in Redbank to create more local jobs.

You will be able to hear from candidates in two Ipswich seats - Ipswich West and Ipswich - during the QT’s election forums held on Monday night.

They will go ahead despite Labor MP’s Jennifer Howard and Jim Madden pulling out.

READ MORE: Here’s what you need to know about early voting and postal votes

Ipswich West

The electorate covers the suburbs west of the Bremer River, including Yamanto, One Mile, Leichhardt and Brassall. As the Bremer tracks east, so does the electoral boundary, with the electorate including Ipswich’s northern suburbs of Karalee, Chuwar and Tivoli. The boundary extends out to Grandchester in the west and includes rural centres of Marburg, Tallegalla and Haigslea. Labor’s Jim Madden has held the seat since 2015 after defeating the LNP’s Sean Choat. Since the seat was created in 1960, it has only been out of Labor’s grasp for 10 years. Mr Madden took 47.3 per cent of the primary vote at the 2017 state election and commanded 58.7 per cent after preferences were counted. Serial candidate Gary Duffy will be looking to take the seat for One Nation, as will first-time candidate Chris Green for the LNP.

Candidates in ballot paper order

Clem Grieger (Civil Liberties & Motorists Party)

Raven Wolf (The Greens)

Karakan Karoly Kochardy

Chris Green (LNP)

Gary Duffy (One Nation)

Anthony Hopkins (Legalise Cannabis Qld)

Jim Madden (ALP)