Simp­son eyes pref­er­ences

Comment News (Gosnells) - - State Election '17 -

THE seat of Dar­ling Range will come down to pref­er­enc­ing, ac­cord­ing to in­cum­bent Tony Simp­son.

Mr Simp­son is the en­dorsed Lib­eral can­di­date for the seat and says he’s been en­joy­ing the cam­paign trail, fo­cus­ing on his elec­torate since he stepped down from the front bench last Septem­ber.

He was coy about his up­com­ing elec­tion prom­ises but said an­nounce­ments re­gard­ing “com­mu­nity fa­cil­i­ties” would be made in com­ing weeks.

The Vic­to­ri­an­born politi­cian moved to WA in 1970 where he served as a coun­cil­lor in his shire, and joined Par­lia­ment in 2005.

He has at var­i­ous times served as whip and min­is­ter.

A for­mer baker, he still car­ries a fresh loaf of bread to bar­be­cues and has been known to bake a batch of 50 scones for se­niors.

Last year, Mr Simp­son made a shock res­ig­na­tion from the lo­cal gov­ern­ment, se­niors, com­mu­nity ser­vices and youth port­fo­lios, cit­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tion dif­fi­cul­ties with the Premier’s of­fice.

“I’ve been fo­cus­ing on the elec­tion and more im­por­tantly re­con­nect­ing with the elec­torate,” Mr Simp­son said of his time in Par­lia­ment since last Septem­ber. Tony Simp­son

“There are 38 days left and parts of my elec­torate are quite di­verse, from the fast-grow­ing sub­urb of By­ford to the rolling hills of Pick­er­ing Brook and Mun­dar­ing,” he told Com­ment News on Wed­nes­day.

“There is no such thing as a safe seat. Peo­ple have the chance to vote in March and hope­fully will see what we’ve done.”

He doesn’t ex­pect party lead­er­ship to change be­fore the elec­tion and hoped peo­ple would take note of his own ac­tion in Dar­ling Range in­stead.

Fac­tors af­fect­ing the mar­gin in Dar­ling Range in­clude re­dis­tri­bu­tion, and a “high-tide” mark in 2013 due to the Rud­dGil­lard fac­tor that in­creased his lead.

The seat’s mar­gin with bound­ary re­dis­tri­bu­tions fac­tored in is about 13.1 per cent.

Mr Simp­son said he had not seen polling for his seat but be­lieved it to be so tight that the pref­er­ences deals with other can­di­date could de­ter­mine who holds the seat come March 11.

He was aim­ing to dis­cuss pref­er­enc­ing ar­range­ments with Shoot­ers, Fish­ers and Farm­ers Party’s Dar­ling Range can­di­date Stu­art Os­tle, an­nounced last week, and One Na­tion’s Sharon Pol­gar­Young.

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