TAMWORTH MP Kevin Anderson has doubled down on his charge against unofficial coalitions forming in elections and called for “first-past-the-post” elections in NSW.
This weekend saw Mr Anderson officially endorsed as the National Party candidate for Tamworth after he stood unopposed at a pre-selection meeting in Werris Creek on Saturday.
Mr Anderson said it was business as usual rather than campaign mode now he had been officially picked to run in the election.
But his call for continuity came with a caveat crying for change in the voting system.
“It should be one vote only and first past the post wins,” he told The Leader.
The Nationals’ MP recently passed a motion to recognise unofficial coalitions formed by opposing parties in recent NSW by-elections.
Mr Anderson expected his Tamworth opponents to similarly team up against him in the general election next March.
“I think they will,” he said.
“That’s what they do and they’ve got to be called out.”
Shooters, Fishers and Farmers (SFF) candidate Jeff Bacon said there was no “unofficial coalition” being formed in the fight to win Tamworth.
“At the same time, we preference in a way that gives us best chance to win the seat,” Mr Bacon said.
“And every party does the same the things.
“It’s fairly obvious Mr Anderson is worried because up until now he hasn’t had decent competition in this seat.”
While SFF and Labor have found common ground in Tamworth calling for upgraded police facilities, Mr Bacon said it was not the sign of a blossoming coalition.
Labor candidate Stephen Mears said Mr Anderson was “jumping at shadows” and there had been no discussion at all “in regards to a coalition” in next year’s contest.
He suggested the voters’ preferences were the only ones which mattered at the polling booth.
“Irrespective of any other candidate’s choice of preferences, the voters have minds of their own, they’re educated and know where they stand and will go the way the want,” Mr Mears said.
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