Let’s get you up to speed on something fairly big that’s gone down over the weekend. A by-election in the NSW seat of Orange has not gone the way people expected, with the Shooters, Fishers & Farmers Party coming within a bee’s dick of victory, threatening to upend the Nationals, who have held the seat since 1947.
Why’s it going down the toilet? Well, there’s a growing sentiment that the Nationals really aren’t repping regional Australia like they used to. Their coalition agreement with the Liberals means that regional people are being slapped with Baird legislation they don’t care for – particularly the greyhound ban and council amalgamations.
So that’s where we’re at. It does have a whiff of something Trumpian about it – an image the Shooters are very keen to play up, with them describing the whopping swing against the Nats as a “win for the deplorables”, a reference to the disparaging term Hillary Clinton used to describe Trump fans.
“We are a real alternative to the National party,” Philip Donato said on Sunday. “The message to Macquarie Street is clear: Orange deserves better.”
This isn’t a guarantee, but the fact that Labor preferences flow to the Shooters over the Nationals might edge them over the line and into the party’s very first NSW lower house seat. Which, regardless of how you look at it, is a big bloody deal.
This isn’t a Trump-style revolution necessarily, but it’s certainly a model for how it might look. Evidence indicates that One Nation would have picked up a helluva lot of votes in Orange if they’d actually run a candidate. Orange will be one to watch.
Source: Sydney Morning Herald.
Photo: Shooters, Fishers & Farmers Party.