June 25, 2016
Here are comments back from voters in Menzies and donors to our campaign when we've asked them what they think of Kevin Andrews and why he needs to go.
"In the absence of a Democrats candidate in this electorate, I would really like to see Stephen take the seat, firstly to drive accountability which is so desperately needed at the Federal level, and secondly to remove Kevin Andrews whose extreme conservative agenda is problematic, especially for women". - Lyn Allison, Former Senator for Victoria and leader of the Australian Democrats
Hi Stephen, I am a former federal Liberal Party staffer for many years who did work in the PM's office and wave the “moderate” banner! I cannot vote for you so thought a donation the next best thing. Nothing would delight me more than to see the appalling Kevin Andrews lose his seat so I wish you the very best of luck! Best wishes! - name withheld
"I'm supporting Stephen as I have always admired his passion and integrity. I think he would make an excellent independent parliamentarian as a progressive conservative standing up for the rights of small business and individuals with his anti-pokies campaign." -Michael Bond.
"The only reason that a conservative dominated senate committee would release a report which is going to cripple main stream environmental groups now is that they do not want Turnbull to win. I am a local businessman and co-manage an environmental not for profit." - Bruce
Hi Stephen. Like you I am a small-l liberal. I met you once at a Young Liberal function where you were controversially a guest speaker. I left the Liberal Party years ago but still believe in the concepts of progressive liberalism of personal responsibility, but also looking after each other and looking forwards not backwards. In this vein I have been a strong supporter of Malcolm Turnbull. For me Turnbull winning is not just about keeping the ALP out of office. It's a battle for the future of the Liberal Party. I fear that if he loses the party will radically lurch to the right into a Tea Party rabble. Who then will advocate for people like me? It is apparent to me that the hard right of the party secretly want to lose this election so they can move back in this direction. The party tried this before with Abbott and it was a disaster. As a Liberal supporter I couldn't come at voting for him and was embarrassed to see what the party of Menzies and Hamer was becoming. Parliament needs people like you who understand that business is not the enemy, but also there is a place for the state to look after people. Best wishes for the campaign and I hope you manage to knock off Andrews. - Chris
Good luck Stephen. Have always admired your hard work and persistence. We need more people like you who have sensible views about supporting businesses both large and small so we can have a prosperous society that can afford world leading education and health. - Paul
Wishing all of the best in the upcoming election.
I chose to donate $1500 to your election efforts because I believe the two major political parties and the system we have now does not represent the best interests of the electorate, and as a result our democracy doesn't really exist to the extent it should. Actually, I am the biggest pessimist and would say democracy has already failed, but people don't realise it yet. Maybe I am wrong and there is still a chance to make a difference, that is my hope.
The idea is that regardless of what happens, you will shake up what we currently have.
Your politics appears to be more to the right than what I would normally support, but we have to be realistic, because anyone more to the left would have no chance in Menzies.
The single biggest issue for me is over population. It is the greatest threat to humanity. It cuts across every other issue we choose to focus on, scarce resources, habitat destruction,dealing with waste, global warming... We can halve our impacts on the environment and society, but if population doubles we are back to where we started.
I also wanted to mention that I believe we are in a more dire situation now than we were in 2008 during the GFC (which really hasn't gone away.) I can't understand why every economist is saying we need to lower interest rates to stimulate the economy, and every politician is dutifully obeying. They say it is a choice between austerity and stimulating the economy. I have not formally studied economics but to my way of thinking, it is a choice between consumption and investment.
Consumption makes us poorer, and investment makes us richer. So if that were true interest rates would need to rise to ration credit and direct it to investment. The only people that could afford to borrow would be those that could get a return through investment. Economic policies are making the situation worse by encouraging consumption. Even house building is consumption and not investment. You can't have a building led recovery.
As a country we think we are much wealthier now because our credit limit has been increased on our credit card. We are still spending more than we earn, and one day we will reach our credit limit again, which is essentially what happened in 2008.
I mention all this because I want people who can make a difference to look at these issues, and be leaders, not panderers to a system that is failing us/has failed us.
Good luck. Alex
At last, someone I can vote for in Menzies
Have just donated $20 to the campaign. Sorry it was not more but can't treat taxpayers money (pension) too loosely.
Thank goodness there is a candidate I can vote for; over the years I have voted informal, for Phillip Nietschke and some other long forgotten candidate(s)......but certainly not a Labor candidate, in my limited protest of our sitting member.
His actions in the euthanasia situation appalled me; not because I necessarily agree wholeheartedly with euthanasia but my disgust at Andrews' thumbing of the nose to the people of NT whom he has virtually nothing to do with.
I was unaware of his pokies funding, so another reason not to support him.
I wish you all the best; hope I can see my way clear to assist in another way later.
Keep it energetic and positive
Wishing you all the best with your campaign in Menzies.
My partner and I are currently renting, hoping to purchase a first home in Menzies one day (where we currently reside). Quite obviously, we are concerned about housing affordability.
I haven't decided my vote as yet but my partner and I will not be voting for Kevin Andrews. I want a progressive leader, who has a finger on the pulse about issues for the younger generation (not just retirees and investors), who believes in equality in marriage, and who communicates a passion for what he/she does. I want fists pumping! I don't believe Kevin fits this bill and that he can advocate real progress. I am glad there are people like you who are showing passion for the good for Menzies.
We are desperate for change and positivity. I am an avid follower of politics and the economy and will continue to watch this space and follow your progress. I also enjoyed your Four Corners appearance, thank you.
Keep up the good work, Casey
A letter from a Liberal voter to Kevin
Listening to the Community
I have been following what you have been saying, writing and doing for the past few years and I, like many others in the community, believe that Doncaster needs a new representative.
I realise that the East-West link was a State Government issue but you could have exercised your influence much more to ensure that Denis Napthine had a water-tight contract. Likewise, I have never heard you push for the finalization of the Western Half-ring road. These are just some of the local issues that needed the clout of a local Federal member.
The articles appearing in the Leader now are an embarrassment, and I think that whoever is writing these for you needs to look for another position.
Tony Abbott was a great Opposition Leader but a hopeless Prime Minister, and he could never ever have been re-elected. With Malcolm Turnbull we at least have a chance of avoiding having Shorten in control.
If you are not going to step aside then get 100% behind the current Prime Minister and make sure that something good happens for Doncaster and the Eastern suburbs. It's about time.
Please carefully consider your own position; Do you really have the clout to make things happen? If not why not?
From a resident on an acre block in East Doncaster
Me, a Kevin fan? Absolutely NOT!
Never a Liberal supporter anyway but particularly not a Kevin fan, especially since he put up his private members bill in 1996 which overturned the Northern Territory Euthanasia legislation. Thus putting the entire cause back for twenty years so far. It is only now that I think momentum is once again starting to build.
You're a brave man launching a campaign in one of the safest seats in the country. It has been held by the Libs ever since it was created in 1984. I think it currently need a swing of some 14.4% against for the Libs to fall. Not going to happen. Can I please direct my vote into a marginal seat where it may actually count?
Nonetheless, I will vote for you. As long as your card preferences that idiot Andrews last.
STEPHEN MAYNE COMMENT: All it will take is for Kevin's primary vote to fall from 58% to 43% and the seat could change hands. It just requires another people power by the long-neglected voters in Menzies.
From a former senior public servant in Manningham
Go for it!
I suspect that you'll attract a lot of support from both disaffected Libs and social progressives generally who are affronted by Andrews' unthinking and dangerous conservatism.
You could offer an attractive and realistic chance of getting some worthwhile progressive representation in the Federal Parliament for the people of Menzies.
From a former member of the Liberal Party in Menzies
Great to hear from you and best of luck in your run against Kevin Andrews. We will definitely support you as we think Kevin has been around too long and due for retirement!.
From a finance industry executive
Stephen, I am in Menzies and I will be voting for you. Andrews has done nothing and because it is such a safe Liberal seat, neither party pays much attention. Something needs to be done about the Banksia Street traffic. But aside from that I like your common sense policy approach.
Long time Liberal voter delighted to have an alternative
When I woke to The Age article on Saturday morning that you are running as an Independent for the electorate of Menzies I was thrilled!
I have lived in the Menzies electorate for the past 25 years and I am appalled at the behaviour of our local Member. I have voted for Kevin Andrews for the past 25 years and he has given the electorate nothing. It is time for a change and you are the man.
Go for It!
Please send me you campaign updates (go here to add yourself to our mailing list)
Yes, please add me to the distribution list. We are desperate for change here.
No, I am definitely not a Kevin fan. What he did with Euthanasia was unforgivable...plus so many other issues.
For what it's worth, my big hitters are:
- Marriage equality
- Domestic violence support and early years education on respectful relationships
- Doncaster rail
- Limiting overseas investors pushing up property prices in Manningham.
Look forward to hearing more about your campaign.
STEPHEN MAYNE COMMENTS: I'm aligned with all of these, besides any form of additional limitation on non-resident property purchases. The state and federal governments have already moved dramatically in this area over the past two years.
Kevin did nothing during the great 2012 recycling plant debate
Our understanding is that the recycling plant will still go ahead - with Eram park (right next to the Freeway) the likely location. Eram park is actually in Whitehorse. That may involve compulsory acquisition, but we haven't heard anything for a long time.
We wrote to Kevin Andrews at the time and got the standard “It's a local issue” response. He never made comment either way. Mary Wooldridge wouldn't commit either way either (she was compromised after being in several publicity shots for the project before it became controversial).
I'll also just reiterate what really got residents upset in the first place - it was the complete lack of engagement and consultation by Manningham Council and Yarra Valley Water until AFTER they had made the decision to place the facility in Tram Rd reserve. We did get an acknowledgement from Yarra Valley Water that they had stuffed up the engagement/consultation.
We went to all the information sessions - and on several occasions we heard Council officers telling people, “This is going ahead - don't bother objecting, its a done deal.” I'm sure I don't know need to tell you that when people feel they are being treated with contempt they mobilise to send a message. As an aside, those information sessions were at the same time as the DD08 ones where Manningham Council assured us all the new residents on Doncaster Hill would all catch public transport and none would own cars!!!
We are not against such a project in principle, but there are many more suitable locations that wouldn't involve encroaching on the buffer zone around residences or destroying a park.
Happy to provide any further information if required - we are happy to see someone taking on Kevin Andrews, hasn't provided local value for a long time (and is stuck in the 1950s…)
PS. If you are looking for a local issue there are several areas in Doncaster getting nowhere trying to get some freeway noise barriers (our area being among them). There are several sections where there are no barriers - Vicroads tell us they don't take noise measurements, it is all based on a model that tells them that it is all fine.
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