Pittwater Life May 2019 Issue

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2019 Federal Election. Mackellar Candidates. Author Meg Keneally. National Volunteer Week. Help our Farmers. Dog Water Parks. Vanessa Amorosi. Retro Van Fun.

2019 Federal NSW Election Special

Her Pitch

Ms Thompson said she made

the decision to stand as an

Independent because she

could no longer support the

Liberal party that was now

“dominated by the right”.

“They will not provide the

leadership and certainty on

climate change and energy

that our economy needs,” she

said. “The chaotic knifing of

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull

reinforced they are more

focused on internal politics

than building a stable and

secure economy.”

She said she had seen representation

becoming narrower

as parties promoted career

politicians who had followed

the same pathway: “from the

right private schools and universities,

into unions or young

liberals, with business or party

ties, sometimes via local government

and then pre-selected

into seats”.

Ms Thomson said Liberal,

Labor and Greens voters alike

had told her they were willing

to get behind a candidate that

represented the “sensible centre”

to help shift politics.

INDEPENDENT: Alice Thompson

On local issues, Ms Thompson

said sitting MP Jason Falinski’s

status as a backbencher

while holding down a safe seat

was a liability for Mackellar.

“This means he is unable to

get the attention of the Prime

Minister on issues important

to this community,” she said.

“Mr Falinski may be rebranding

himself as a ‘modern liberal’,

but he answers to a party that’s

been hijacked by the right.

“He is early in his career and

would naturally seek promotion

so I’d say it’s unlikely Mr

Falinski would cross the floor

when the position of this community

conflicts with the party

room.”

She added his influence

would be even weaker if Labor

won government.

Conversely, an Independent

would get a “seat at the table

where decisions are made”.

“I would answer directly

to this community, and hold

both parties to account,” she

said. “I will be a far more

powerful advocate for this

community, particularly with

a Bill Shorten government. In

my experience, even majority

governments are keen to work

constructively with the cross

bench because they know they

may need their help in the

future.”

Local issues she is focusing

on include health, transport

and the environment.

Ms Thompson opposes the

downgrading of services at

Mona Vale Hospital.

“While it’s a State Government

issue, it affects many

people in this community,

including my own family, and

it’s worth the fight,” she said.

“It will be difficult to restore

services, and I will work with

the NSW Government, community

groups and clinicians

on what can be done.”

She acknowledged that

transport was also a State

Government issue.

“But with three of the most

congested corridors in the

nation, it’s impacting the national

economy,” she said. “If

we get transport right, it will

help practically every person

who lives here, whether you

are in a bus, ute or car.

“In big cities like Sydney, we

know the solution to congestion

will always be better public

transport and more cycling

and pedestrians.

“I support the benefits of

the Beaches Tunnel, but I’ll be

keeping government accountable

for getting the planning

right. For a massive public

investment, it must stack up.”

She added that it would be

highly unlikely that a Labor

government would provide

funding for the tunnel.

“As a priority we need to

identify other projects that

they will support, otherwise

we will continue to be stuck

38 MAY 2019

The Local Voice Since 1991

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