Elections were held in the Australianstate of Queensland on 1 November 1986 to elect the 89 members of the state's Legislative Assembly. It followed a redistribution which increased by seven the number of seats in the Assembly.
The election resulted in a seventh consecutive term for the National Party under Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen. It was the 11th consecutive term for the National Party in Queensland since it first came to office in 1957.
This was the last time that a non-Labor Government was elected at a Queensland state election until 2012, although the Coalition briefly held government from 1996 to 1998 following the Mundingburra by-election.
All three parties had high hopes for the election. The Nationals knew that they needed to increase their number of seats in order to hang onto Government (they had held a majority of one in the last Parliament, which had been increased from 82 seats to 89 for the 1986 election). The Liberals desperately needed to win back some of their losses from their disastrous performance in 1983, and Labor hoped to exploit disunity between the conservative parties to make gains.
The election was held under malapportionment boundaries, which had been redrawn earlier in the year in a manner which further advantaged the National Party.
The Bjelke-Petersen Government won a commanding victory, winning an extra eight seats and thus increasing its majority. The Liberals gained two seats, but were still nowhere near making up for their 1983 losses. Labor lost two seats.
The 1986 election is significant for a number of reasons. Firstly, it saw the National Party retain a majority of seats in the Parliament. This was only the second election in Australian history (the other being the 1983 Queensland election) in which the National Party won enough seats to form Government in its own right.
More importantly, Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen’s victory gave him the confidence to launch the ‘Joh for PM’ campaign, which would play a major part in the 1987 federal election, and would later be a major factor in his undoing.