Dear Mayne Report readers,
This is a one story edition to let you know that, after not contesting a general state or federal election for six years, I've decided to run
as an independent against Liberal backbencher Kevin Andrews in the Federal seat of Menzies at the July 2 election. For a full explanation, check out this Crikey story
published on Monday, May 9.
This decision to run had already been made before the Herald Sun
broke this atrocious story
late on May 6 about ethnic branch stacking by a Kevin Andrews staff member in Menzies.
How on earth can elderly Macedonian voters be signed up to join the Liberal Party without their knowledge?
Surely the pressure will now be on for Andrews to retire, amid fears the Liberals could lose Menzies. This sort of thing is unprecedented in safe Liberal seats in metropolitan Melbourne.
I'm running in Menzies as the pro-Turnbull liberal independent up against a long serving conservative hard-liner who is Tony Abbott's closest ally in Canberra. Have a listen to this May 9 interview
with 2CC breakfast host Tim Shaw explaining the tilt.The Age
broke the story
of our independent challenge at 12.15am on Saturday morning, following up from this story
in Thursday's paper revealing that Tony Abbott was to be guest of honour at a Kevin Andrews fundraiser on Saturday night at the Veneto Club in Bulleen.
The Veneto Club is where I caught up
with one of the 7 remaining staff photographers for The Age
on Friday and then returned to distribute this flyer
to guests at Saturday's fund raiser.
After 25 years as the local MP, it is clear that Kevin Andrews should retire and make way for some new talent, as was argued in this recent Crikey story.
With the number of female Liberal MPs set to fall this election, some internal powerbrokers are pushing for Kevin to stand aside for Georgina Downer, daughter of Alexander.
Amazingly, Kevin Andrew has never lived within the current boundaries of Menzies, preferring to be near the train line in Heidelberg within Jenny Macklin's seat of Jaga Jaga. Menzies broadly lines up with the boundaries of the City of Manningham, the only Melbourne council without either a train or tram service. Kevin Andrews has never been active in rectifying that problem which leaves Manningham with more cars per household than any council in Australia.
If Kevin retires gracefully or is disendorsed by the requisite two-thirds majority of the Victorian administrative committee, I won't run in Menzies. But if he stands and fights, he'll have a real battle on his hands over the next two months.
The Menzies tilt will cover a lot of territory but pokies will play a big part.
Despite all this Abbott-Andrews talk about family values, they seem to have no problem with the destruction that pokies cause to families across Australia.
The Veneto Club, scene of the black-tie fundraising dinner
, was one of 6 pokies venues that was slapped with double rates
to help fund problem gambling programs in 2012-13 during my time on Manningham council.
Sadly, the state Liberal government subsequently legislated to make differential rates on gaming venues illegal.
Finally, here are 12 points of difference from Kevin Andrews that I'll be offering voters in the coming weeks:1.
Ongoing commitment to live in the electorate, unlike the incumbent2.
Commitment to ban poker machines outside of major casinos3.
Commitment to sweeping campaign finance reform, including early disclosure of political donations4.
Respect for the views of women, including support for more diversity in the corridors of power5.
No climate change scepticism with real support for reducing emissions whilst not smashing the economy6.
Support for increasingly mainstream social views such as marriage equality and euthanasia7.
Support for meaningful industrial relations changes, rather than meekly conceding reform is "dead buried and cremated".8.
Federal backing for a long-overdue program of Manningham council infrastructure investment, particularly in sporting facilities and long neglected roads.9.
Pledge of loyalty to Malcolm Turnbull as PM after the election, particularly in a hung parliament10.
Package of reforms to improve treatment of retail shareholders11.
Commitment to Doncaster Rail after Metro Rail has been delivered and in conjunction with East West link project as Lend Lease proposed to both Liberal and Labor in 2014.
12. Commitment to finish the Western Ring Road in line with RACV's priority alignment between Greensborough and Ringwood.Donate to help keep fund the Menzies campaign
If, after 25 years of Kevin, you think it's time we had some renewal in Menzies, I'd love you forever if you made a small donation to the campaign by clicking on the image below:
Alternatively, if you don't like Paypal, donations can be transferred to our account at Westpac
Mayne Report Pty Ltd
BSB: 036 406
Account number: 130897
Or, you can send a cheque to PO Box 925, Templestowe 3106.
We've already placed a full page ad in one of the local papers which will hit the streets next week.
And if you fancy volunteering on July 2 or helping out in any other way, drop us an email to email@example.com.
That's all for now.
Do ya best, Stephen Mayne* The Mayne Report is an email newsletter and website which promotes transparency and good governance in the corporate, political and media worlds. It is published by Stephen Mayne, the founder of Crikey.com, shareholder advocate and City of Melbourne councillor. To unsubscribe from this email list, click here.