Un­easy feel­ing af­ter elec­tion

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News -

Some of us can’t help but re­main un­sure about what the land­slide La­bor win in the state elec­tion means for our part of west­ern Vic­to­ria.

De­spite con­vinc­ing as­sur­ances from La­bor Mem­ber for West­ern Vic­to­ria Jaala Pul­ford that she and her po­lit­i­cal col­leagues would gov­ern for all of the state, there re­mains a sense of un­easi­ness.

It is an un­easi­ness fu­elled by a cu­ri­ous mix of frus­tra­tion and un­cer­tainty as well as ex­pec­ta­tion and hope.

Some peo­ple in the re­gion fear, con­sid­er­ing La­bor’s rep­u­ta­tion for gov­ern­ing strongly where most peo­ple in the state live – our ma­jor ur­ban cen­tres – their feel­ings of iso­la­tion can only in­crease in the next four years.

Oth­ers are try­ing to be more op­ti­mistic and are cu­ri­ous to see how a La­bor gov­ern­ment with so much ex­pected power would em­brace re­gions be­yond the bound­aries of the party com­fort zone.

One thing is for sure – Na­tion­als Mem­ber for Lowan Emma Kealy, al­ready renowned for be­ing a ‘noisy’ rep­re­sen­ta­tive, is go­ing to need to be even nois­ier in get­ting her mes­sage across.

Ms Kealy, who like her con­ser­va­tive pre­de­ces­sors in the seat ob­vi­ously has fa­mil­iar­ity and sen­si­bil­i­ties that res­onate with her elec­torate, will find the new State Par­lia­ment a rel­a­tively lonely bat­tle­field.

She will still have a few mates to back her up dur­ing the heat of de­bate but nowhere near as many as the past.

She, like many oth­ers, was wait­ing to see yes­ter­day whether she would con­tinue to have a neigh­bour­ing Lib­eral ally in Louise Sta­ley with her in par­lia­ment.

La­bor’s Sarah De San­tis ap­peared on course, al­beit by only a hand­ful votes, to re­claim the gold­fields seat of Ripon for La­bor, but it was still too close to call.

Re­gard­less of the ul­ti­mate make-up of the Vic­to­rian Par­lia­ment, we ap­peal to the gov­ern­ment to con­sider what the Wim­mera-mallee al­ready is, but to also look be­yond that to con­sider what it could be in the fu­ture.

To re­peat our­selves yet again, Vic­to­ria is a rel­a­tively lit­tle state where there is no rea­son for any­one to miss out on ser­vices and op­por­tu­nity.

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