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Relief for Broadbent

MEMBER for McMillan Russell Broadbent said he was “relieved” after learning he had retained his seat at the Federal Election.

“We don’t get excited, we get relieved,” the Coalition MP told The Star.

“I’ve lost four election campaigns and won six. So you always go into each election campaign with a feeling of trepidation.”

Vote 1: Ken Bartlett of Leongatha discusses policies with Member for McMillan Russell Broadbent in Leongatha on Saturday. The popular Coalition politician retained his seat with a comfortable win.

Vote 1: Ken Bartlett of Leongatha discusses policies with Member for McMillan Russell Broadbent in Leongatha on Saturday. The popular Coalition politician retained his seat with a comfortable win.

With a redrawing of McMillan’s electoral boundary, there were 6000 new voters in Pakenham. More than a few voted for Mr Broadbent.

“They were very gracious to me in their support. We won booths in Pakenham, which was great. What was a great surprise was that Moe turned towards me very strongly,” he said.

“They know I’ve supported projects very strongly in their area and they came onboard very strongly. That was a massive change for me.”

Those positive results showed in the overall vote, with Mr Broadbent seeing a 7.7 per cent swing toward him on preferences.

“South Gippsland knows I’m a friend and the people supported me very strongly,” he said.

Mr Broadbent said winning a seat in government was far different to when your party was in opposition.

“You need to work very hard on behalf of your constituency all the time and we started yesterday (Sunday), when I opened a nursing home in Drouin, something that we’d long pushed for funding for,” he said.

“We run a campaign from the day after we’re elected. This has always been a marginal seat and we’ve always treated it that way. We run a marginal seat campaign. We work very hard on behalf of our constituency, whether out of government or in government.

“In government at least we’ll have the opportunity to stridently put forward our case for funding that’s important to Gippsland. We have a new strategic regional fund and we’ll be making sure Gippsland and McMillan get their fair share of that.”

Mr Broadbent said it was a “huge responsibility” being in government.

“We become the accountable ones. The Australian people have given us a great responsibility to look after their health, welfare and financial wellbeing. That means we’ve got some very difficult decisions to make for next year’s budget,” he said.

Mr Broadbent has been in federal politics for three decades and run 10 election campaigns.

“And I’ve never felt so fit or enthusiastic about my role as federal member for McMillan,” he said.

Meanwhile, Roger Thorrowgood, who was making a bid for a Senate seat on behalf of the Stop CSG Party, did not have the same kind of success.

Despite that, the Inverloch resident believes his first foray into federal politics has been a positive one.

“Electorally, we didn’t do well at all. But we’re a brand new party that’s basically trying to forge a constituency out of people who are pretty much welded on to the way they’ve voted for a long while,” he said.

“We were never trying to take a Green vote, because that would be counterproductive. Our reason for being was to appeal to more conservative voters, like those disaffected Labor people, along with the Nationals too.

“I’ve spoken to ‘No Carbon Tax’ climate sceptics, who are vehemently opposed to coal seam gas.”

Learning to use Facebook and You Tube had offered valuable “personal returns,” Mr Thorrowgood said.

“It was a very small start for the party, but hopefully we’re serving a purpose in getting the issue of CSG better known,” he said.

Short URL: https://thestar.com.au/?p=8481

Posted by on Sep 11 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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