In an exercise that no media outlet has ever attempted before, Crikey’s political guru Hillary Bray has recommended how you should vote in all 150 House of Representatives seats. After a busy morning murdering his mother and making his horse pro-consul to Gaul, the Emperor Hillarian has decided to pop off to the Circus to watch the gladiatorial spectacular with his catamite while snacking on larks’ tongues in honey.
There are 150 bouts on – and the Emperor has the power of life and death over the combatants. Who’ll get the thumbs up – or the thumbs down. Read on and see in Hillary’s How to Vote.
How does the Emperor make his decisions? He considers the competency of
the sitting members, their profile, their ethics and whether or not
they have been prepared to take a stand on issues. When there is no
sitting member, the Emperor just gives a run down on the seat – so yes,
before you start whinging, it’s completely subjective. What else do you
NEW SOUTH WALES
Labor Member MP since 1990 Daryl Melham is a decent enough bloke and
even had the guts to quit the front bench over the shadow cabinet’s
decision to support Queensland’s native title laws in the Senate.
Shadow attorney-general Robert McClelland has held this seat since
1996. It’s safe ALP, so to keep the plebeian masses from revolting we’d
better give him the thumbs up.
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The Rodent’s nest since 1974. Home of the Prime Miniature who ratted on
his own principals of sound economic management and making Australians
feel “relaxed and comfortable” in an internationalised economy and
instead went for Pauline’s peevish paranoia. Thumbs down – big time –
and it’s a near marginal, too.
Home of The Cadaver, Phillip Ruddock – a man who has trashed his
principals for a seat at the Cabinet table. Thumbs down big time again.
Paul Keating was always going to be a hard act to follow, but no-one
ever seems to hear a peep out of Michael Hatton. Still, he had a good
reputation in PJK’s day for looking after constituent affairs so to
keep the plebs happy in a safe ALP seat he gets the thumbs up.
Brendan Nelson is a narcissist and egomaniac, but if we rejected
pollies on that basis, who would we get to fill all the places. Thumbs
If a former local TV newsreader was elected as anything other than an
independent, the Alan Ramsey’s of this world would be fulminating.
Lucky Peter Andren. He can be precious at times but has avoided the
worst excesses of the Free Lunch Movement. Thumbs up for now.
Labor family fiefdom – sitting member Kelly Hoare is the daughter of
former MP Bob Brown and worked on his staff. We don’t like that at
Crikey. Thumbs down.
Roger Price, the sitting Member since 1984. Hasn’t set the world alight
but has been prepared to think outside the circle, particularly on
defence matters. Thumbs up.
Bruce Baby! Bruce Baird plays a good game and should be on the front
bench if the Libs get back in. There’s even talk of him being Peter
Costello’s deputy one day. Thumbs up.
Nat MP and deputy speaker Garry Nehl is retiring. A local businessman,
accountant and tourism industry figure, Luke Hartsuyker, has been
preselected in his place and is likely to win. We don’t have any dirt
on him so thumbs up.
Shadow minister for defence and former Speaker Steve Martin is precious
at times. And as a long-serving member of the NSW right who seems to
take his electorate for granted, we’re recommending a protest vote so
Sitting Member and shadow minister Michael Lee was the boy wonder of
the Keating ministry and would still be seen as a breath of fresh air
if the troglodytes like Crean and Ferguson even got moved on. Thumbs
Liberal MP Gary Nairn not only has to see off a Labor candidate whose
old man held the seat in the seventies, but is facing a big push from
Peter Cochran , a former state Nat who has signed up to the Free Lunch
Movement and even had Mad Bob along to open his campaign office. The
poor Lib deserves a thumbs up.
Dear old Tim Fischer is retiring, and the competition here will be
between Lib Sussan Ley and the Nat’s Bill Bott. Hillary hears good
things about Ley to thumbs up to her.
Sitting Member Julia Irwin is a good Labor hack and was re-endorsed by
the Labor Party state executive after massive branch stacking in the
electorate. She may be a lust object for Lex Loser – Irwin claimed he
made gestures at her during Question Time – but Fowler is a mega-safe
seat anyway, so a reluctant thumbs up for safety’s sake
A seat in the news in recent day, after Labor candidate Peter Knott
forgot to take his medication. It’s been held for the Libs by Jo Gash
since 1996. The swing against her in 1998 was well below the average in
marginals, reflecting her hard work in the electorate. Thumbs up.
Albo territory since 1996. Anthony Albanese works hard, the New South
Wales Labor left has got much better manners than the right and after
hearing a few of the yarns about Albo’s buck’s night boat trip, he gets
the thumbs up.
Frank Mossfield is a solid Labor union hack who’s getting on in years.
Other than that, he’s done sod-all. It’s safe but thumbs down anyway.
Home of the Cowardly Lion, John Anderson. The Lion should have roared
more loudly and more often at some of the ratbags on his backbench and
stuffed it up big time over Ansett, but he gets a reluctant thumbs up
because it’s him or a Free Luncher. Despite making a lot of noise, Dick
Smith declined to use some of the funds from his line of Pauline’s
Pantry Foreigner Free Foods to fund a grudge match candidate (“Why
won’t you let me run aviation in the country unanswerable to anyone?”)
because of the international situation. What a convenient excuse.
Dana Vale won this for the Libs in 1996 and has fought like hell for her area. A big thumbs up to a good local MP.
Liberal MP Alby Schultz treated John Fahey like sh*t, has form on the
nepotism front after his missus went for a seat and is a general
ratbag. His Labor opponent Jan Merriman played Steve’s mum in
Heartbreak High. Hillary thinks that’s funny, and Alby gets a big
Hillary’s had a few interesting times with the Labor Member Joel
Fitzgibbon. True, he did inherit his father’s seat (a strange Hunter
Valley tradition), but he’s been a good shadow minister and gets the
thumbs up despite the nepotism.
Hillary would like to make some very emphatic statements about Laurie
Brereton and where his career should have lead him, but legal niceties
prohibit them. Very, very big thumbs down.
Kacky Jelly was OK for comedy relief – but when she got placed in the
Ministry the joke wasn’t funny anymore. Nothing personal, but thumbs
Despite beating former Anti-Discrimination Commissioner Carmel Niland
and DFAT head turned Beazley Chief of Staff Michael Costello for the
Labor preselection, member John Murphy has been a complete non-entity
since 1998. There are no marks for slackness. Thumbs down.
Nat Member since 1993 and Trade Minister Mark Vaile can be a dimwit at
times and owes a lot of his rise to the travel rorts affair of 1997,
but it’s a safe seat so we’ll be nice to the agricolae and give him the
John Fahey, like Tim Fischer, is another good bloke it’s sad to see
going. Still, ultra marathon runner Pat Farmer should make a good
successor for the Libs in this seat.
Two words: Bronwyn Bishop. Two more words: thumbs down. An incompetent
minister who once thought it would be possible to become Prime Minister
by attending a large number of first nights at the opera. God help us.
Lib MP since 1996 Kerry Bartlett is virtually invisible. Then again,
there are many pleasant views in a Blue Mountains seat, and perhaps
he’s just taking them all in. We’ll give him the benefits of the doubt
and say thumbs up.
Liberal MP Alan Cadman has been sitting around since 1974 and is a
waste of space. He should have resigned at the last election in favour
of some new talent. Thumbs down.
Sinkers has only been gone for one term and new boy Stuart St Clair is
on the verge of losing it to the Free Lunch Movement in the form of
independent candidate Tony Windsor. Stu needs a thumbs up.
Another Labor family affair in the Hunter – retiring Member Allan
Morris’ brother Peter held the neighbouring seat of Shortland.
Strangely enough, as far as Hillary knows, the new Labor candidate
Sharon Grierson hasn’t worked in an electorate office and isn’t related
to any local Labor MP. Jeepers, tentative thumbs up.
The Hindenburg’s hangar. Joe Hockey can make an idiot of himself at
times, Australia still doesn’t appear to have become a financial
services hub and it isn’t polite to mention HIH, but we’ll give him the
thumbs up anyway.
Sitting Nat Ian Causley has done all he can to encourage the growth of
the Free Lunch Movement – and now he may well fall victim to it. Ha,
ha! Sucked in! Thumbs down.
Sitting Nat Tony Lawler is retiring after just one term. Former New
South Wales Farmers Federation boss John Cobb will probably keep the
seat for the Nationals.
Sitting Lib Ross Cameron faces a tough fight and may need to have an
eye kept on him round the time of the full moon, but he’s actually been
brave enough to express a few radical thoughts. Thumbs up.
Labor MP since 1998 Bob Horne now holds a notionally Liberal seat. He’s
run for state parliament as an independent and has only distinguished
himself in his current job by running up the highest printing bill of
all MPs. Thumbs down.
Where would Parliament be without Janice Crosio’s booming interjections
in Question Time? Thumbs up for the entertainment value – and because
the seat is very safe Labor.
Laurie Fer’son is a man of no discernable talent other than impeccable Labor family connections. Thumbs down.
L-Plate Larry Anthony is a barely competent Minister and has a tough
fight on his hands. There was some dirty work in the ALP over the local
preselection and Larry was the only sitting Nat prepared to go public
and back a republic, so he gets the thumbs up.
Kay Hull has held the seat for the Nats since 1998 and is considered competent enough. Thumbs up.
Liberal Member since 1996 Jim Lloyd has zero profile. He may have
thought that the headkickers of the New South Wales right would
guarantee that the fragrant Belinda Neal would get preselection for the
seat, in which he could have legged it off to Tahiti and romped with
dusky lovelies and still have p*ssed it in. Marginal members should at
least be known for the work they do on the ground. Lloyd isn’t. Thumbs
A safe Labor seat. Member Jill Hall has no profile, but the Circus is put on to keep the masses from revolting, so thumbs up.
Queers, deros, junkies, hookers, latte lovers, slum dwellers and all
sorts of other delightful inner-city types. If you’re brave enough to
want to represent them, Ms Plibersek, then thumbs up to you.
The bruvvers have been hard at work in this electorate. Labor Member
since 1984 Colin Hollis is resigning after several attempts to knock
him off, branch stacking is endemic and the Labor state conference
dumped Jenny George in the seat. As if life in the Gong wasn’t
unpleasant enough. Thumbs down for another ACTU hack but it’s so safe
it won’t matter.
The Mad Monk always reminds Hillary of a character in an Evelyn Waugh
novel – the seminarian with an illegitimate son who works for an
incompetent but ambitious politician, leads a mad crusade and ends in
Parliament himself. He faces a stiff challenge from independent Peter
McDonald. Hillary gives the Monk the thumbs down – but the Waugh
character he most resembles, Basil Seal, always got away with
Leo McLeay – the man who’s entire career has involved riding on his
maaaates’ coat tails with the odd compo claim along the way. An
emphatic thumbs down for this former speaker from the NSW Right.
Liberal Andrew Thomson is leaving this seat after six years. Peter King
should hold it for the Libs, although there will be a strong local
backlash against Rodentism and King hasn’t exactly set the world on
fire so far.
Home of Mark Latham, the Voice Crying in the Wilderness, the Enoch
Powell of the Greater West, etc, etc. Latham has a good brain that
produces very good policy – but then spends too much time on promoting
it rather than getting into a position where it can be implemented.
Still, Hillary is happy to give him the thumbs up.
HILLARY’S HOW TO VOTE – VICTORIA
Chris Pearce hasn’t had enough time to disgrace himself yet and didn’t say anything too stupid in his maiden speech. Thumbs up.
Michael Ronaldson retiring in a huff and inbred local Lib powerbrokers
scared off a decent candidate in Olympic shooter Russell Mark so
Labor’s Catherine King is looking good.
Mar’n “Mumbles” Fer’s’n’s seat. Crikey doesn’t like nepotism, so
despite the fact that Mar’n’s done more than his brother to deserve to
be an MP, he still gets the thumbs down. There are just too many union
hacks in the Parliament too.
Labor marginal held by Steve Gibbons since 1998. He has no profile in
Canberra and is a solid Labor hack but is said to be good on the
ground, so thumbs up.
Here’s hoping that one day soon a seat named Howard will honour another
PM who lost his own seat. MP since 1996 Alan Griffin is a solid career
Labor hack. Thumbs up or the angry plebeians might storm Caesar’s
palace and do undignified things to the dancing girls.
Long time Member Neil O’Keefe is retiring from this safe Labor seat to
become a millionaire pensioner. His likely successor, Brendan O’Connor,
is a solid union hack so tentative thumbs up.
Sitting MP Andrew Theophanous stands no chance since he left the Labor
Party. Their nominee though, God help us, has worked for economic
vandal Joan Kirner and is currently a staffer for North Korean
strongman Kim Il Carr. Still, it’s thumbs down to Theophanous.
Marginal Lib being vacated by Michael Wooldridge. His likely successor,
Tony Smith, is “Pup” to Peter Costello’s “Dog” if you’re a Jeff
supporter, but – for once – the Liberal Party appears to have trained
up a good hack and got them ready to take a seat of their own. How
Member since 1998 Anna Burke has a hell of a lot lower profile as an MP
than she did in her days in the Finance Sector Union. Thumbs down.
Stewart “Herman Munster” McArthur is getting on and is the son of a
former President of the Victorian Legislative Council, Sir Gordon
McArthur. They’re two serious counts against him. However, his Labor
opponent works for the You Can Never Give Us Enough Money and We Demand
To Live in a Sheltered Workshop Environment Union, sometimes known as
National Tertiary Education Union, so he just gets the thumbs up in a
low quality field.
Gavan O’Connor, Member since 1993, isn’t exactly a high profile shadow
minister. Still, it’s safe Labor so thumbs up to keep the masses from
revolting and because we haven’t got any dirt.
Liberal Member since 1996 Phil Baressi is falling apart – but as some
of this is personal we’ll be kind and give him a tentative thumbs up as
he has not set the world on fire.
Bruce Bilson has been the Liberal Member since 1996 has had quite a few bad reviews of late. Thumbs down.
Wreathie’s going, but while his successor as Liberal nominee Greg Hunt
scores a few black marks on the nepotism/hack list, he’s a good bloke
and his opponent represents completely unreconstructed old Labor
troglodyte from the MUA.
Hillary had to look up the name of the Member for Gellibrand, Labor’s
Nicola Roxon, and Hillary can’t remember a thing she has said or done
since she was elected in 1998. When you hold a seat by 25 per cent,
that’s a bad sign. Thumbs down.
Sitting Nat Peter McGuaran’s family exercise feudal rights over this
seat. His brother Julian has been put in the Senate to avoid a career
as village idiot of Orbost. All that, combined with some injudicious
filling in of travel claims back in 97 means that it’s thumbs down.
Count Yorgu’s lair. A good thinker but an unconvincing politician. Yes,
David Kemp did see off Ian Macphee, but it’s still thumbs for being an
absolute zealot and very wooden.
Home of Captain Smirk. He stuffed up the implementation of the GST big
time when he let Treasury do too much of the details, but if he
promises to move against the Rodent quick smart then it’s thumbs up.
Labor’s Anthony Byrne took this seat after Gareth Gareth spat the dummy
in a by-election just two years ago. He’s still on P-plates, so we’ll
give him a tentative thumbs up.
Slimy Simey Crean has held this seat for 11 years – and it feels like
forever. Two words: generational change. Two more words: thumbs down.
Liberal Lou Liberman has his pensions, so off he goes. Maniacal
monarchist Sophie “Uptown Girl” Panopolous has been preselected to take
his place. Sophie is usually more often associated with the Paris end
of Collins Street than Wodonga and has never appeared to be a
particularly obsessive Sea Change fan. Her presence has both the Nats
and Labor talking up their chances
Labor’s Ann Corcoran has only been here since August last year, so she also wins the benefit of the doubt. Thumbs up.
OK Hillary hates Jenny Macklin’s voice, but she’s one of the best
members of Labor’s shadow ministry and would have claimed Michael
Wooldridge’s scalp over the MRI affairs if the Prime Miniature had any
serious regard for ministerial standards. Thumbs up. She’s the
frontrunner to be Australia’s first female PM but still has a long way
If the Rodent wasn’t a Rodent, Member Petro Georgiou would have been put on the front bench long ago. Emphatic thumbs up.
Labor’s Julia Gillard has been building a profile since her election in 1998 – as one should do in a safe seat. Thumbs up.
60-something Bob Charles has been strangely obsessed with industrial
relations since he was elected for the Libs in 1990, but has worked the
seat well. Thumbs up.
Nat John Forrest has been a competent enough, if unspectacular¸ Member
since his election in 1993. In the hope that it stops the RARA’s
whinging for even a few moments, he gets the thumbs up.
Labor’s Bob Sercombe is a reject from Spring Street who stuffed his
career when he tried to unseat then opposition leader John Brumby and
swapped to the Federal arena. He’s agreed to hand his seat over
ambitious PM wannabe Bill Shorten in 2004 once the pension is notched
up so it’s a strong thumbs down to try and save the taxpayer some
pension cash on a hack.
Fran Bailey, Liberal MP from 1990 to 93 and then again from 1996 suffers from a bad dose of the Hyacinths. Thumbs down.
Christian Zahra inherited this ultra marginal Labor seat from his old
boss in 1998, but is beginning to make a name for himself. Thumbs up.
Lindsay Tanner has a brain and some interesting policy ideas. Hillary
isn’t quite convinced that he believes everything he says, but unlike
his colleague Mark Latham he doesn’t p*ss everyone off when he comes
out with them. Thumbs up.
Home of God-botherer Kevin Andrews since 1991. Andrews knows how to
campaign, but he gets the thumbs down for starting the move to overturn
the Territory’s euthanasia legislation. They’re allowed to be idiots if
they want to be.
NB Hillary is being an absolute hypocrite here after previous comments
on mandatory sentencing and realises this, so save your time and don’t
bother e-mailing pointing this out.
Labor’s Michael Danby can be precious and a few interesting yarns about
various goings on in the branches before his election in 1998 still
haven’t been properly answered. He’s a bright boy, however, so he gets
a qualified thumbs up.
Sharman Stone took this seat off the Nats in 1996 and has worked it
well ever since. Thumbs up. PS Fans of heavy metal magazines may be
interested to know Murray contains a town called Kerang.
Member since 1986 Harry Jenkins succeeded his father and is a solid
Labor hack. He has been a Deputy Speaker and is likely to follow his
old man and become Speaker if Labor wins.He’s competent enough and gets
a not particularly enthusiastic thumbs up.
David Hawker has held this seat for the Libs since Big Mal quit back in 1993. He’s a plodder but we’ll give him a thumbs up.
Kelvin Thompson reclaimed Wills for the ALP when he beat mad Trot Phil
Cleary back in 1996. Phil immediately claimed he was the victim of a
conspiracy, but found very few people gave a toss. Thompson is tainted
with membership of the Cain and Kirner governments and is inclined to
be whiny, but as Wills is safe Labor territory once again the masses
will be angry if we don’t give him a thumbs up.
HILLARY’S HOW TO VOTE – QUEENSLAND
Liberal Cameron Thompson got lucky in 1998 and despite coming third,
Labor and other preferences got him over the line and saw off Pauline
Hanson. For his role in that alone, thumbs up.
Former Keating Minister Con “The Sicilian” Sciacca bounced back in 1998
to reclaim Bowman for the ALP. He’s a decent enough bloke, although he
should know better than to peddle the crap he’s currently doing as
immigration shadow. Thumbs up.
Arch Bevis has held this seat for Labor since 1990. Hillary doesn’t
think he’s anything spectacular, but he’s served as a Parliamentary
Secretary and has been in the shadow ministry since 1996, so he must be
competent enough. Thumbs up.
A traditional Labor seat, Capricornia was won back for the ALP by
Kirsten Livermore in 1998. Her predecessor, Nat Paul Marek, was notable
only for walking into the Senate one day after getting his Chambers
mixed up. Kirsten isn’t much better and hubby’s fisticuffs with a state
minister impressed no-one. Thumbs down. A special mention to the
National Party candidate, John Lever, for his work as an artificial
Home of De-Anne Kelly – who, if she had any guts, she should have
followed Mad Bob, quit the Nats and gone independent. She represents
the needs of her electorate well – but we don’t owe them a living.
Even Hillary sometimes wonders if we have all got too carried away with
Cheryl-bashing, but she is a deeply unpleasant person. Thumbs down.
Home of David Jull, the Marlboro Man. Fate has not been kind to Jully.
The PM didn’t give him his beloved tourism portfolio in 1996, and
instead he got caught up in the travel rorts mess as Admin Services
Minister. He has been around since 1975, with only a gap between 1983
and 84. Jull should consider putting his feet up fairly soon and taking
a break before his lifestyle catches up with him, but we’ll give him a
thumbs up – especially as it was rumoured for a while that he was
Alex Somlyay has held Fairfax for the Libs since 1990 – and God knows
how. He is lazy and invisible, even despite a brief stint on the front
bench. He is under threat from Shane Paulger, a “rebel dairy leader”
and disciple of Mad Bob who seems to think that the provisions of
Section 92 of the Constitution “On the imposition of uniform duties of
customs, trade, commerce, and intercourse (fnarr, fnarr) among the
States, whether by means of internal carriage or ocean navigation,
shall be absolutely free” – but still gets the thumbs down.
Slippery Pete Slipper has held this seat for the Libs since 1993. Back
in the eighties, however, Slippery held the seat as a Nat and was a big
supporter of the Joh for PM push – so enthusiastic that he bought a big
place in Canberra in anticipation of his future role as a minister in
the Joh government. There is no statute of limitations on such
behaviour. Thumbs down.
How secure would you ever feel in an electorate named after the man who
was PM for eight days? Kay Elson has held Forde for the Liberal Party
since 1996 and held her ground well in 98, so thumbs up.
Kevin Rudd has only held Griffith since 1998, but the way he goes on
you’d think he was the greatest genius in the Labor Party, if not the
Parliament, if not the country, if not the world. A pompous egomaniac,
even by the standards of Parliamentarians but we need more
intellectuals and less union hacks in the Parliament so thumbs up.
Former NFF executive member Ian Macfarlane surprised many when he
contested this seat in 1998 as a Liberal, rather than a Nat. He’s made
it into the Ministry, holding the Small Business portfolio, but stuffed
up big time when his branches decided to play smart buggers with the
GST earlier this year. He should have known better, but we’ll let him
off just this once and give him a very tentative the thumbs up.
Hillary has a lovely story about Herbert MP Peter Lindsay but can’t
tell, dammit, as it would let the cat out of the bag. Lindsay won the
seat in 1996 and hung onto it in 98 by just 150 votes. Hillary thinks
he’s a moron, but as the Queensland Labor branch stacking and vote
rigging scandal was centred on this seat, he gets a reluctant thumbs up.
Nat Paul Neville has held onto this marginal since 1993. He’s risen to
the dizzy heights of becoming the National Party Whip, but that’s it.
Mad Bob. Thumbs down. Victorian attorney general Rob Hulls should never
be forgiven for letting this lunatic get into the Federal Parliament in
Crocodile Dundee Warren Entsch has his moments – but also has a couple
of clouds over his head over a contract to lay concrete at a local RAAF
base and whether a CSIRO report into development in an area where he
owns land may have been slanted. He’s an amusing bloke, but if we’re
going to stick to Crikey principals it’s thumbs down.
Hillary thinks Wayne Swan may be too clever for his own good and that a
lot of sh*t from Shepherdson is still on him. Thumbs down.
Mal Brough won this seat in 1996 and deserves to lose it for his bungling as Minister for Employment Services. Thumbs down.
Hillary hates his guts for complicated reasons, but vets say Bruce
Scott, the Nat MP for Maranoa since 1990, is their man. If our dinkum
diggers like their Minister for Veterans Affairs (a portfolio that
might have been needed 50 years ago but has no excuse to exist today
other than as a job creation scheme, by the way) we’ll let him stay.
Margaret May beat 22 other candidates – including former Brisbane Lord
Mayor Sally-Anne Atkinson – in the preselection for this safe Liberal
seat when God-bother John “Colonel” Klink quit in 98. She was Klink’s
electorate secretary and should know what’s expected – but is
invisible. Thumbs down.
Kathy Sullivan is finally retiring after 27 years of making no
discernible impact in Parliament. The Liberal preselection for her spot
was a debacle, with Sullivan suing successful candidate Steven Ciobo.
Ciobo looks set to become the next member, however, after popular Gold
Coast Mayor Gary Baildon got scared off from running as an independent
post Tampa. Labor claims that their candidate Victoria Chatterjee
Chatterjee is the first Indian-born Australian woman to be endorsed for
a seat in Federal Parliament. Goodness gracious me!
Moreton has been held by Liberal Party hack and former Wombat presenter
Gary Hardgrave since 1996. Hillary can’t get particularly excited about
him and the seat is mega-marginal. Thumbs down.
Bernie Ripoli took Oxley back for Labor in 1998 but has been a noisy ratbag in the house. Thumbs down.
Yet another one of the Queensland mega-marginals, Petrie has been held
for the government by Teresa Gambaro since 1996. She’s a plodder, so
Labor’s Craig Emerson is a bit of a clever clogs, but the Circus exists
to keep the masses happy and this is a safe Labor seat. Thumbs up,
otherwise we’ll see the masses molesting Vesta Virgins.
Crikey readers know about this seat. The Liberal preselection was a
joke (delivered in best HG Nelson voice) and a disgrace. Leonie Short
gets the thumbs up ahead of stacker Johnson.
Warren Truss has held this seat for the Nats since 1990. He hasn’t been
particularly distinguished as Agriculture Minister, but then again he
hasn’t stuffed up. Truss was responsible for unearthing a lot of the
“sports rorts” dirt on Ros Kelly. He gets a qualified thumbs up.
Fart Boy’s seat – and he seems to have finally found a safe one. He’s a
bright bloke and a decent chap – but has dumped his principals and let
the election be fought on the Government’s ground. Still, he’s
preferable to the Rodent so reluctant thumbs up.
Labor’s Jane Gerrick has been invisible since her election in 1998 –
but as she has been off battling leukaemia for part of the time,
Hillary will be kind and give her the thumbs up. The comment of her
Liberal opponent, Don Randall, during his brief tenure as MP for Swan
that Cheryl Kernot had “the morals of an alley cat on heat” was not
taken into consideration in reaching this decision.
After cat-hater and plagiarist Richard “Dorrie” Evans, Humphrey B Bear
would have looked good. Cowan’s marginal, but Labor’s Graham Edwards
has a good reputation. Thumbs up.
We’ll overlook her strange choice of partners, past and present, and
give the thumbs up to Julie Bishop, the Liberal Member since 1998 – but
she’d better meet the high expectations we have of her.
Geoff Prosser won this seat for the Libs back in 1987, became small
business minister in 1996 but was forced to resign over alleged
conflicts of interested the following year. He’s worth squillions and
is only hanging around in the off chance he’s offered a spot in the
ministry again. Hillary thinks he should spend more time with his
family. Thumbs down.
Carmen Lawrence is a disgrace. Thumbs down.
Hasluck is a new, notionally Labor marginal. Their candidate is a union
hack, Sharryn Jackson. Liberal candidate, Bethwyn Chan, drew the bottom
spot on the ticket, which won’t help in a close fought contest.
Liberal Barry Haase was elected in fluke circumstances in 1998 on the
back of former member and fruit and nut bar Graeme Campbell’s
preferences. He’ll have a hard time hanging on, but as he has raised
key electorate concerns such as fuel prices and road funding in an
intelligent way (are you listening, De-Anne? Bob? Ian?), he gets that
prestigious Crikey thumbs up.
The former seat of Hillary hero John Hyde, Moore has been held by GP
turned medical entrepreneur Mal Washer for the Libs since 1998, when he
defeated Liberal turned ‘let’s see which way the breeze is blowing’
independent Paul Filing. He’s scarcely a household name, but he is
competent and gets that thumbs up on condition that he lift his profile.
Wilson Tuckey is a ratbag – but he knows the Standing Orders backwards
and in very many ways is a parliamentarian’s parliamentarian. This will
be controversial, but he gets a reluctant thumbs up.
Judi Moylan has had a tough ride in this seat since she took over from
lost leader Fred Chaney in 1993. The Rodent dumped her in one of the
toughest portfolios, Family Services, in 1996, and she got stuck with
the unenviable job of trying to sell the policy of requiring nursing
homes to charge accommodation bonds. The policy was later dumped – but
Moylan was too. She gets a sympathy vote. Thumbs up.
Stephen Smith is a solid Labor hack and another one of those people
Hillary thinks is a clever clogs. He’s not as bad as others and has a
safe seat which he works well – he actually got a swing to him in 1996
– so he gets a thumbs up provided there is not too much grovelling to
media moguls as Communications Minister.
Another Labor marginal with a Member who’s been invisible since her
election in 1998, Jann McFarlane. Not happy, Jann. Thumbs down.
Ditto. Kim Wilkie has only been in the news over allegations of rorting. Thumbs down.
Dazzling Dazza the Doormat has held Tangey for the Libs since 1996. He
might be Attorney-General and have one of the best legal brains in the
land, but he direly needs some assertiveness training. A qualified
thumbs up if he promises not to let the Rodent walk all over him.
Trish Worth, the Liberal Member for Adelaide since 1993, used to be in
the medical profession – but in terms of bedside manner she comes
across more like a pompous version of someone from White Lady Funerals.
She was lucky not to suffer public guilt from association – close
association – during the travel rorts fall out. Thumbs down.
Liberal Patrick “Sick Rat Pecker” Secker may be a Crikey subscriber,
but his personal life seems out of step with his other hard right
views. Thumbs down.
Martin Evans, Labor Member for 1994 always seems very enthusiastic –
but he has a good record. A former mayor and state MP in the area, he
had the guts to run and win the state seat of Elizabeth as an
independent Labor candidate when he got done over in a factional deal.
Hillary’s happy to give him a thumbs up.
Another lazy member in a safe seat. Andrew Southcott was elected as
Member for Boothby in 1996 after beating Liberal Senate Leader Robert
Hill in the preselection and has had no presence in Canberra. The
much-discussed Adelaide Mitsubishi plant lies in his electorate – yet
Southcott appears to have been silent even on this vital part of his
state’s economy. Thumbs down.
Barry Wakelin has held Grey for the Liberal Party since 1993 and must
be doing something right. He has a low profile in Canberra, but got a
huge anti-Labor swing in 1996 and only suffered a very minor swing
against him in 1998 so must be working this huge electorate hard.
The manic Chris Gallus has been in full campaign mode since she won the
seat of Hawker for the Libs by a record low 14 votes in 1990. Her
period as Aboriginal Affairs shadow under Lex Loser culminated in his
disastrous outback trip where he had to admit he didn’t know what his
policy on Indigenous affairs actually was, but we won’t hold that
against Chris. Thumbs up.
Since 1998, Kingston has been known as the home of the most boring man
in the House of Representatives, Labor’s David Cox. A megawonk who
should have stayed in the back room, Cox gets the thumbs down.
No-one believed it when Trish Draper won this seat for the Liberal
Party in 1996 – and no-one believed it when she hung on in 98. Draper
has no apparent talent whatsoever and is only noted for wearing an
Adelaide Crows scarf during Question Time and calling for the banning
of the film Lolita – presumably in complete ignorance that any decent
video library already carried the Kubrick version. Thumbs down.
What hasn’t been said about Lex Loser? Hillary will refer to just two
matters. What do “the things that batter” line and the famous fishnets
photo say about our Foreign Minister’s judgement? Thumbs down.
Rod Sawford was elected to this ultra-safe Labor seat on Mick Young’s
retirement in 1988. It’s clearly wasted on him as he has zilch profile
and must only keep it due to the Gordian knot of deals that holds the
South Australian ALP together. Thumbs down.
Home of the Teenage Toecutter Christopher fine since 1993. To adopt the
language of wine critics, he is impudent but will mature with the right
cellaring. Thumbs up.
Speaker Neil Andrew had the guts to challenge a sitting member for
preselection and win this seat for the Liberal Party in 1983. That
spark has been missing for a long time, and he is considered a joke in
the chair. Thumbs down.
Bass seems to change hands at each election nowadays. Michelle O’Byrne
has held it for Labor since 1998, but hasn’t set the world alight. She
needs to do better in a mega-marginal. Thumbs down – but please put her
before One Nation’s Dennis Collins. Den was an Alice Springs Country
Liberal Party Member who advocated burying guns in the desert in case
of a future Aboriginal uprising before the party finally dumped him.
Another Labor marginal with a low profile Member, Sid Sidebottom. Thumbs down.
Hillary will never forgive Duncan Kerr for unseating Michael Hodgman
back in 1987. Michael was such fun to have around. Still, Kerr is a
competent MP who should be allowed to hang on for a shot at a senior
portfolio if Labor gets back in. Thumbs up.
If you thought Michael Hodgman was mad, please don’t forget the former
Member for Franklin, Bruce Goodluck, who once appeared in the House of
Representatives Chamber wearing a chicken suit. Hodgman’s younger
brother Peter is running against Labor’s Harry Quick, who took the seat
on Goodluck’s retirement in 1993, but Quick has a decent reputation and
should hold the seat. Thumbs up.
Lyons is another Tassie seat Labor picked up when long term Liberal MP
Max Burr retired in 1993. It’s been held since then by Dick Adams, who
going by his girth eats at every house in the electorate once a week.
Adams deserves a tick for his own life story – he only learned to read
and write as an adult, and yet was a minister in the Tasmanian state
parliament at the age of 30. With his bulk, he should have a higher
profile, but we’ll give him the thumbs up.
AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
Guess which way public servants vote? Annette Ellis has held this seat
for Labor since 1998, after being the Member for Namadgi during its one
term of existence from 1999 to 98. Her sole contribution in Parliament
seems to be whinging, so she gets a thumbs down.
Labor’s Bob McMullin is a wonk’s wonk who can cut it as a politician
too. He is immensely capable and has managed to survive despite being
factionally non-aligned and deserves a thumbs up.
There are now two seats in the top end, Solomon, which takes in Darwin,
and Lingiari which takes in the rest. Labor’s Warren Snowdon, the
Member for the Territory form 1987 to 1996 and again since 1998 is a
shoo-in. His CLP opponent, Ron Kelly, was a naughty boy who hitched a
flight on a VIP to Cocos Island and got sprung, with claims that this
caused an RAAF member to be left behind, resulting in extra flights and
costs to the government. Snowdon is a capable parliamentarian, and gets
the thumbs up.
Solomon is marginal Country Liberal Party territory – and the bright
boys who have stuffed up ever since Sharon Stone managed to defy all
odds and not win statehood have lined up a doozy of a candidate in Dave
Tollner. Dave contested the Territory seat of Nelson as an independent
in 1997 before rejoining the CLP, has said he supported the GST being
extended to food, has a conviction for possession of dope and faces a
court case over allegations of drink driving and having an unregistered
vehicle driving. To top it off, he made the wonderful campaign
statement “The CLP is family-focused. Labor is focused on women who
have six kids by six different fathers.” There was a move to dump him
as candidate – until it was discovered that the party rules prevented
this. Labor’s Laurene Hill should be smiling.