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Byron Shire
May 20, 2022

Comment: Gazing into the electoral crystal ball

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Richmond candidates 2022: The Greens, Mandy Nolan

Mandy Nolan needs little introduction to most readers of The Echo, where she has a weekly column. She is a comedian and journalist running as a candidate for The Greens in the federal seat of Richmond.

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The shock of the 2019 election result, when even ABC psephologist Antony Green predicted Labor would win, has pundits nervous and doubting current polls.

Meanwhile, pollsters have changed their methodology and have subsequently underestimated Labor’s vote in three state elections.

So, what’s likely to happen? It could be a Labor landslide, or we may end up with the proverbial ‘hung’ parliament.

We really can’t be sure at this stage, despite the overwhelming swing to Labor and others, away from the Coalition.

MPs Justine Elliot and Anthony Albanese with local government rep Sarah Ndiaye. Photo Jeff Dawson.

We could have the Hilary Clinton effect – a last minute bombshell thrown at Anthony Albanese.

If Labor wins more seats than the Coalition, but not enough to form government without crossbench support, the Governor General will invite Anthony Albanese to form government.

This is where the argy bargy really begins.

To be safe, the new prime minister would need several crossbench members to guarantee supply, not just the Greens.

They protest they won’t do deals, but they will. They would have no choice.

I very much doubt if the new PM and his negotiating team will take on the entire agenda of any of those with whom they are negotiating, but just enough to ensure their own agenda is not hijacked and nothing that is electorally unpalatable. They will have their eye on staying in government for at least two terms.

There’s no possibility Labor would agree to immediate closure of Australia’s coal mines, needless to say.

There’s a strong possibility they’d agree to a thermal coal phase out, guaranteeing existing coal workers retraining or significant compensation, with major investments in renewables such as green hydrogen.

When I was in the NSW Legislative Council in the Bob Carr years, holding the balance of power, (Greens MP) Ian Cohen and I, and other crossbench members, wanted the government to conserve substantial areas of the South East old growth forests.

There was an impasse.

Anti-logging protest in progress at Wentworth Hills, Tasmania. Bob Brown Foundation.

Penny Wong, then advisor to Kim Yeadon, Minister for Forests, buttonholed me in the Fountain Court of Parliament House and asked whether I’d be amenable to raiding the environmental trust fund to compensate loggers.

I said I didn’t mind if every logger became a millionaire, all we wanted was to save those ancient forests. So legislation was introduced to strip the fund of hundreds of millions of dollars to look after those affected by declaring large areas as national parks. It was a very worthwhile investment.

The new government absolutely won’t be ‘held to ransom’, as Scott Morrison and his at-risk MPs constantly bleat.

It’s an absurd allegation anyway – coming from Coalition members – when the Liberal Party has been held to ransom for its entire nine years in office by the bunch of troglodytes now infesting the Nationals Party.

It used to be a real country party, looking after rural people.

I dealt with some excellent Nationals Party ministers and members when I was in Parliament.

Nationals Party Minister, George Souris, did some great things. Nationals MP, Jenny Gardiner, was on the Parliamentary Committee I chaired. We got on well, and our reports were usually unanimous.

Sadly, the National Party has lost its way, and represents mining interests more than country people. Just imagine the seat of Richmond going back to today’s Nationals! It was a safe Nationals seat for decades held by Doug, and then Larry Anthony. They are still fondly remembered by many.

Tell me, off the top of your head, can you name the Nationals Party candidate for Richmond?

It would have been easy once. It was either Larry or Doug.

To save you racking your brain, it’s Kimberly Hone. She’s a Pentecostal Christian who doesn’t believe in climate change.

Nationals candidate for Richmond, Kimberly-Hone. Image: Out in Perth

Ms Hone made the following comments during a speech to a church meeting, which was subsequently posted on YouTube: ‘The ultimate goal for me is … I want to bring God’s kingdom to the political arena. And I want God’s kingdom to penetrate the political mountain.’

She’s a most unusual choice of candidate, and has little chance of achieving her ambition, barring a genuine miracle.

It’s possible no one else wanted to be a candidate for such a Sisyphean task.

Who will win the seat of Richmond?

It will be between incumbent Labor’s Justine Elliot and Greens’ Mandy Nolan.

Personally, while I would be happy to see Justine as part of a winning team, I would absolutely love to see Mandy in the House.

She’d garner as much attention as Jacqui Lambie and fight like hell to get a better deal for the homeless, particularly getting help for those stricken by the floods.

Looking at the numbers, it’s really unlikely Mandy’s election would harm Labor’s chances of forming government.

Voters will decide.

Richard Jones. Image supplied

Richard Jones is a former member of the NSW Legislative Council and is now a ceramicist.

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  1. Hone: “I want to bring God’s kingdom to the political arena”.

    No no no no NO!

    Hasn’t she heard of separation of church and state, ffs! Imagine the nation governed by a bunch of wowser Fred Nile wannabes: return to the Dark Ages!

    As a Pentecostal, she probably holds to the belief that the planet’s fate is not ours to care about or to (re)direct because Jesus is coming again (how nice for him!) and he will fix everything while his loyal sheep (that’s what the Bible calls them!) swan around a mythical Heaven plucking on harps as they smugly watch this planet and its remaining occupants reduced to ashes.

    Those holy rollers might hold a little entertainment value for a short time, but let them stay in their megachurches and out of parliament. ScoMo included!

  2. Richard contrary to your opinion…the majority
    Of the Nation do not believe in this Climate change
    Nonsense either .. !! The general public don’t
    Have this global warming Nonsense as a priority
    Or a concern for this nation , and for good reason..
    Richard usually its the company you keep that may
    Have you of the opinion of so called emergency.
    This type of propaganda and alarmist hype is why
    Young adolescents are seeking counselling at record levels.. it is child abuse and should cease .
    as for the election Richard your comments on
    The Anthony’s is absolutely correct ..they did so much for this area / country .. really is easy
    We either need Coalition/ labor to lead ..to have
    These one policy Teal independent’s running
    Is a scary prospect.. and have all ambition to
    Make Holmes a court very rich ! All are white Middle to upper class women privileged all likely millionaires..would not have a clue what it would be like to go without .. and if these fake Independent’s are voted in then the homeless
    Rates will surge as will power prices..!!
    When asked to price in what it will cost the
    Taxpayer’s for such reforms to our energy needs
    Any details or costings? None of them could answer
    That question.. vote wisely all ..and be very careful
    What you wish for ..this election is probably the most important election in Australia’s history..

    • Barrow, I wrote a cover story for Simply Living Magazine, that I published in the 80s, about global warming and its implications. I commissioned an artist to do a double page spread illustration of how life would be when global warming really hit.
      It was startlingly prescient. It was entitled Is The Earth Dying?
      The climate emergency is not a matter of belief, like religion. It’s just science.
      It’s real and it’s happening right now.

      • There is more evidence against anthropomorphic global warming than for it.
        Look up Pathological Science.
        While your at it, go watch An Inconvenient Truth again. And look up all the climate doom predictions from last century.
        You and the Q-Anon people seem to forget the predictions your priests have made than never come true.

        • Look up!
          It’s happening right now. We’re in the middle of it and this is just the beginning.
          90% of the Great Barrier Reef has been bleached.
          You can live in your tiny denial bubble if you like but you will experience it like everyone else.

          • Richard, 100%
            The Great Barrier Reef has had 6 mass bleaching events, all in our lifetime – 1998, 2002, 2016, 2017. 2020 and 2022.
            The GBR mass bleaching of 2022 is terrifying because it has happened during a La Nina weather system.
            But still the climate dolts want to argue the toss of climate change.

    • Barrow you really need to keep up. Your mates in the LNP, it seems, have had a road to Damascus experience, think anthropogenic climate change is a thing, have a new enthusiasm for renewables and want net zero emissions by 2050! *

      * through technology not taxes – meaning basically that if some miraculous technology emerges that means we can stop all greenhouse emissions without antagonising our mates, or changing anything we’ll grab it with both hands. Failing this we don’t have a backup plan.

  3. Hi Richard good to see you still kicking bum, agree with your comments.
    I am a bit disturbed by the photo of Albo, Justine and Sarah I was under the impression that Sarah was currently posing as a Greens councillor. Not sure that Mandy will be too pleased.

    • Hi Tom, you may or may not know that Sarah is a valued member of the Bluesfest media team and is on the job at the festival wrangling people and media.
      – I can’t speak for her, but she may have been there in that capacity.

      Maybe she was just being polite – which is nice too!

  4. A question for the Nationals candidate Kimberley Hone.
    You follow the Pentecostal movement and you have said that your ultimate goal in politics is to “bring God’s kingdom to the political arena”.
    One-third of our population has no religion, a number which is rising fast and already outnumbers Pentecostals by 30 to 1.
    The ten happiest nations on earth are also the least religious.
    Given the above, why do you reject democracy in favour of theocracy?
    Why do you want to sow division, impose your tiny minority views on the rest of us and make us all less happy?

  5. Barrow needs to get out and talk to a few more people, especially the young and the ancient. They can read the science even if thee (Barrow) cannot.
    Glad Richard is still upright.
    The original Country Party would have more in common with the Greens than the current Nats who are captives of coal where many recently past leaders have ended up getting jobs.

  6. Barrow can’t read what he refuses to see regardless of age & know-how.
    A ‘trial by jury’ would not work either.

  7. Good on you Richard , you’re a legend mate . It’d be good to have you back again , along with Jan and Ian , you guys rocked. Changed a lot of entrenched attitudes . And yes , the country party used to be for country folk. Now they’re just for big mining and water mining out west . The farners are left out of the picture .

  8. The good thing about The Echo is that it enables all to have their say and for us readers to be aware of diverse opinions. People like me need to realize that the truth is different to other people – my reality from an Emergency Services point of view is that climate change has been obvious for the past ten years here. Drought, fires and floods are regular occurrences and getting worse. They are experienced by more and more people and flora and fauna not just in the Northern Rivers but all over the world.


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