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Labor eyes young blood

New candidate: Australian Labor Party candidate Anthony Naus in Leongatha last Thursday.

THE Australian Labor Party has a new candidate for the seat of McMillan.

Anthony Naus, at just 22 years of age, will be taking on sitting Liberal MP Russell Broadbent  and Katter’s Australian Party’s David Amor for the seat.

Mr Broadbent has held the seat since 2004 but Mr Naus said that he can’t let his opponent ‘walk’ into the seat again.

“I’ve met Russell a couple of times,” Mr Naus told The Star.

“He’s a very pleasant guy and I like him, a lot of people do.

“He is a good Liberal but he is not indestructible. He has to be challenged and can’t just walk in and get the seat every time. “There has to be a contest and I will challenge and do that. He’ll run a fair campaign and I’ll run a fair campaign and see how it goes in September.”

Mr Naus has grown up in the McMillan seat, first living in Bunyip and now living on his parents’ rabbit farm in Shady Creek while he finishes his arts degree in sociology and politics.

“My family has always been involved with politics and Labor,” he said.

“I have always been for social justice and equality issues, especially through a Catholic upbringing with the missionary side of it.

“Why not get involved and provide equality and equal opportunity for everyone? That’s why I ran for Labor because they provide those kinds of opportunities.”

Despite being only 22, Mr Naus said he is ready for federal politics and now was as good a time as ever.

“I wanted to challenge myself and the opportunity presented itself and you never know if these kinds of opportunities will come up again, so I decide to just go for it,” he said.

“Labor is not doing too well, but if I can provide those couple more votes I might as well do it.

“It’s really just a great opportunity.

“People are disillusioned by both parties and it’s always good to have a new voice and new face and get people involved. It doesn’t matter if you are Liberal or Labor, just be interested in politics again. I think it’s a great time for any politician to come into the game.”

Education reform is at the forefront of Mr Naus’ campaign.

“The Gonski funding reform is sadly being blocked by state governments,” he said.

“I think providing that base level for each student based on need, not school, is much fairer and we are giving this money.

“And the State Government is saying ‘No, we are not going to give money to struggling kids’ and that’s disappointing.”

The National Broadband Network is another policy of his campaign.

“It’s huge for regional Australia and a big enabler for small businesses, education, health and those mediums that require fast internet and also remote communities,” Mr Naus said.

“We need the up to date tools to work with to get into the game.”

As a part of a farming family, Mr Naus takes a strong view on coal seam Ggs.

“I understand the potency of the coal seam issue has around here and the effects that will have,” he said.

“The Labor party doesn’t have a concrete position on this but I am against this for sure. It’s going to create many more problems than it will solve.”

The leadership debacle in the Labor camp is nothing to be worried, about according to Mr Naus.

“I think it’s just a distraction and really, people are sick of it; I’m sick of it and get really angry at it,” he said.

“We have the tools to win this election, we really do. We should win on these things but leadership, all through this run up, has come up again and distracted the public, and the media has jumped right onto it.

“We are not doing ourselves any favours with it all, but at the end of the day I think that people will focus more on the policy because that’s what really affects people’s lives and we just have to pull our heads in.”

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=7416

Posted by on Jun 19 2013. Filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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