Local issues vital as we cast a vote in federal election

EDITORIAL: People across the Fraser Coast have made it clear they are disillusioned with Campbell Newman and the LNP, particularly after jobs and health services were slashed across the region.

But will it be enough to change their federal vote?

Federal Member for Wide Bay Warren Truss has been sitting safely since he was elected in 1990, with a 15.6% majority.

It would take a serious contender - and that usually means a candidate from a well-established party - to topple him.

His reported joke at the expense of Campbell Newman at a recent LNP event - that the mood in the electorate is "good unless it is the day after Newman has closed a hospital" - suggests he is only too aware of the ill-feeling caused by the LNP's actions. We can expect he will campaign with this in mind.

The retirement of long-standing Hinkler MP Paul Neville, who has held the seat since 1993, does complicate the options in the Hervey Bay and Bundaberg electorate.

His would-be LNP successor Keith Pitt is a relatively new name in political circles, and faces competition from the well-known but controversial former state member for Burnett, Rob Messenger, who is campaigning for the Palmer United Party.

Labor is putting forward Lucy Stanton as candidate for Wide Bay, and Leanne Donaldson for Hinkler.

Several more names will be announced in coming days.

For the people of the Fraser Coast, we cannot get too distracted about whether we'd prefer Kevin Rudd or Tony Abbott as PM. When you vote, vote with local issues in mind.

Without a powerful voice representing us, we will be behind the eight-ball from the start.

Find the latest election stories here.



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