South Australians wanting to be represented by people with an understanding of issues affecting regional areas should vote Liberal for the Legislative Council, Shadow Treasurer Rob Lucas said today.
Mr Lucas, raised in Mount Gambier, is Liberal Leader in the Legislative Council and this election leads a Liberal ticket featuring well-credentialed candidates from across South Australia.
Fellow Legislative Councillors offering themselves for re-election John Dawkins (Gawler) and Michelle Lensink (Bridgewater) are joined by candidates Tim Keynes (Kimba), Stephen Wade (Oakbank), Ashley Jared (Naracoorte) and Bob Randall (Henley Beach).
“Only the Liberal Party offers a team with such a broad range of backgrounds, not only in terms of geography but also in terms of life experience,” Mr Lucas said today.
“Those on the Labor ticket and most other candidates have little background in, and understanding of, rural and regional issues.
“This election is also important because Mr Rann and Labor are pledged to abolish the Legislative Council.
“Rural communities should resist this strongly because if Labor was re-elected Mr Rann and his union ‘advisers’ would have absolute power in South Australia. Everyone in regional communities who lived through the Dunstan and Bannon Labor Governments will know the importance of having a Legislative Council to protect their interests.
“Whilst Mr Rann would abolish the Legislative Council, the Liberal Party recognises its importance as a ‘political safety valve’ that keeps Premiers and Governments accountable.
“Some minor parties and independent candidates at this election are also supporting weakening the powers of the Legislative Council by supporting four-year terms.
“Not only do Members of the Legislative Council represent the entire state of South Australia – their eight-year terms provide stability and balance to the Parliament and ensure a strong populist vote at one election does not automatically give control of both Houses.
“I urge South Australians around the state to give consideration to these matters as they contemplate their Legislative Council vote on election day.”