National Party candidate backflips on preferencing promise

November 28, 2014 – 2:35PM

By Keryn Reynolds

Yesterday Nationals Sonia Smith hands out her party’s how to vote cards at a pre-polling booth in Buninyong. PICTURE: UniPollWatch source

Yesterday Nationals Sonia Smith hands out her party’s how to vote cards at a pre-polling booth in Buninyong. PICTURE: UniPollWatch source

Buninyong National Party candidate Ms Sonia Smith has apparently back-flipped on her commitment not to hand out her party’s official how to vote cards.

Ms Smith was photographed handing out her party’s official how to vote card at a pre-polling booth in Buninyong yesterday, despite nine days ago vowing not to use them and instead print her own, to avoid preferencing Liberal candidate Mr Ben Taylor. See UniPollWatch’s story here.

Ms Smith’s claim that she would not preference Mr Taylor followed remarks he made about rolling back abortion laws at a public forum in the key goldfields electorate.

When asked today by UniPollWatch if she had reversed her decision not to preference Mr Taylor, or been pressured by her party to hand out the official cards, Ms Smith declined to answer.

Instead she said, ‘Both HTV cards are registered with the VEC, available and are able to be handed out, as I said on ABC radio.’

Ms Smith told UniPollWatch three days ago that volunteers would be given a choice on election day of handing out her how to vote cards, or the official National cards. See UniPollWatch’s story here.

Greens candidate Mr Tony Goodfellow said, ‘Sonia says one thing and does another. Voters are quick to pick up on dishonesty. I’m sure we will see that reflected on Saturday. There is only one party people can trust and that’s the Greens which I’m honoured to represent.’

Labor incumbent MP Mr Geoff Howard declined to comment.

The Galaxy poll taken two weeks ago, predicts a 40 per cent primary vote for Labor, 37 per cent Liberals, 6 percent the Nationals and 13 per cent for the Greens.

Overall, the poll predicts a 54-46 win to Labor in Buninyong.

keryn.reynolds@unipollwatch.org.au ( @kerynbuninyong)

 

Keryn Reynolds is a Master of Journalism student at the University of Melbourne