Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Peter Gordon is the best candidate in the October 18 Vasse by-election

He may be standing for the Nationals but Peter Gordon is the best person among the candidates for the Vasse by-election on October 18.

During my 8 years as the member for Vasse, I was always on the lookout for those rare people with the necessary qualities to be a good member of Parliament. In particular, I searched for people who provided sound leadership, who had been successful at their chosen career (business, professional, parenting, teaching, etc), who had a moral compass to help steer them when the difficult issues came along and who were mentally and emotionally capable of committing to the long hours, extensive travel, the time away from home as well as the personal abuse which is always directed towards politicians, regardless of their party or  their individual qualities.

In my time as an elected MP, I found just 4 people who I considered had the necessary qualities to be good members of Parliament. The small number is not a reflection on the many other people I interacted with who I believed weren't well suited to a parliamentary life. Instead, it was simply a measure of the significant difficulties associated with being an MP.

Of those 4 people, two were dairy farmers (one male, one female) and one was a geologist (female). None showed any interest in becoming a politician at the time I spoke to them because of their existing business or family demands.

Peter Gordon was the fourth person on my list and, while I suggested his name to various people when the Vasse by-election was announced, I have to admit I never asked Peter direct if he might have been interested in standing. Nonetheless, I was greatly pleased to see him running as a candidate for the Vasse by-election (even if he should have been chosen by the Liberals rather than the Nationals!). Why? Because the interactions I've had with him over the last 10 to 12 years have shown him to be a highly capable leader, a successful business person, committed family man and father and, probably most important of all his qualities, honest. He's also not a bad sort of bloke.

Without reflecting on the other candidates standing for the by-election, all of whom have some good qualities, my assessment is that Peter stands head and shoulders above them all. If elected, I believe he will be an incredibly hard working member of Parliament for Vasse, committed to achieving benefits for all Vasse voters, regardless of their voting preferences. While economic development issues are understandably the primary policy issue at this by-election, Peter is close to the full range of issues that are important to Vasse electors: education, health, water, environment, public housing, agriculture, tourism, police, justice, family services and community development.

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