The latest Newspoll, published in News Corp, showed support for One Nation had fallen two points to 4 per cent of the national vote, after a declining trend.
While political pundits tipped One Nation would sweep the field at the 2017 Queensland election, it was Katter’s Australian Party which picked up an extra seat, taking its numbers to three in the state Parliament, making the KAP the largest crossbench party.
Mr Katter claimed his party was leading in unpublished polls in two north Queensland lower house divisions, including his own of Kennedy, but would not name the other seat.
“And we’re not trailing far behind in another two, so there’s probably enough votes there to go pretty close to quota,” he said.
Mr Katter said he had strong hopes for the north Queensland seats of Dawson (held by the LNP’s George Christensen on a 3.4 per cent margin), Herbert (held by Labor’s Cathy O’Toole on less than 1 per cent), Leichhardt (held by the LNP’s Warren Entsch on 3.9 per cent) and Kennedy (10.6 per cent).
“We are very strong in the north and that’s our strategy – to concentrate in the north and the west, well there’s not many people left in the west, sadly, but there is in the north,” he said.
“I think that if I was the member for Leichhardt, I’d be figuring out my superannuation.”
Mr Katter, 73, was a state MP from 1974 before entering federal politics in 1993.
Asked if he had any plans to retire, Mr Katter said he “would probably go another 12 years”.
“I’m still beating my son [Queensland leader Robbie Katter] over the 25 metres and he was a signed player with the Cowboys and he didn’t believe me, he reckoned I cheated, so we ran him again and I beat him again,” he said.
“So when he can beat me, I’ll probably start thinking about hanging up the shoes.”
Mr Katter also announced Greg Wallace, a former council official in the state’s north, would take the second spot on the party’s Queensland Senate ticket.
“Greg is very famous – he instituted the work for the dole scheme for Australia and when 60 Minutes was bigger than Ben-Hur, he was on 60 Minutes,” he said.
Felicity Caldwell is state political reporter at the Brisbane Times