Labor's chances of gaining a majority in its own right in Queensland Parliament have been boosted, with independent Rockhampton candidate Margaret Strelow saying she now expects Labor to win the seat.Posting on Facebook this afternoon, Ms Strelow said LNP preferences to One Nation would push her into third place, meaning her preferences would go to Labor candidate Barry O'Rourke.
"It will be very difficult for me to win after the distribution of LNP preferences today," Ms Strelow said.
But a short time later, she stressed her comments did not constitute a formal admission of defeat.
"Looking at the numbers as LNP preferences are being distributed (remembering the LNP and One Nation did a preference swap here in Rockhampton), it looks like at least half of the LNP voters are taking their preferences to One Nation," Ms Strelow told the ABC.
"I'm not formally conceding yet. I'm saying it will be incredibly difficult on the vote as it is for me to get there.
"I'm admitting that it's incredibly unlikely that I'll win the seat. Most likely it will go to Labor and I'll return to my job as mayor."However, Mr O'Rourke said it was still too early to make a call.
"Preferences are now being distributed between One Nation and Labor from Margaret Strelow's vote," he said.
"I'd prefer to wait until that's been finalised to make a call on whether I've claimed the seat."A week into the election campaign, Ms Strelow chose to run as an independent after being rejected in a Labor pre-selection stoush that ended in Mr O'Rourke's favour.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk had backed Ms Strelow to replace retiring minister Bill Byrne in the central Queensland Labor stronghold.
If Ms Strelow is right and Rockhampton goes to Labor, it would be a boost to Ms Palaszczuk's chances of getting the 47 seats she needs to govern in her own right.
Latest counting has the ALP on 45 seats and leading in two others, which would already be just enough for a majority.
Adding Rockhampton would potentially put Labor on track for 48 seats and give Ms Palaszczuk more breathing room, after she vowed during the election campaign not to govern in minority.
LNP's Ian Walker concedes Mansfield to LaborFormer shadow attorney-general Ian Walker has conceded defeat in the Brisbane seat of Mansfield, phoning Labor's Corrine McMillan to congratulate her.
"I thank the people of Mansfield for giving me the opportunity to serve them in Parliament — six fulfilling years I will never forget," Mr Walker said via Twitter.
Earlier, for the second day in a row LNP leader Tim Nicholls pointed out Ms Palaszczuk did not yet have the 47 seats needed for a parliamentary majority.
"The people of Queensland need to know whether Annastacia Palaszczuk will keep her word," he said.
"She broke her word last time, she said she wouldn't govern with minor parties or independents and she did."