The real powerhouses behind Qld politics

 

THE state campaign is a highly orchestrated whirlwind of tense press conferences, business breakfasts, stakeholder meetings, back-to-back interviews, party fundraisers and constant travel.

But behind the hard-hats and hi-vis of Annastacia Palaszczuk and Deb Frecklington's public appearances are the men and women behind the scenes mapping out their paths to victory.

They're massaging the daily messaging, planning for every eventuality, taking the pulse of the electorate and providing a steady stream of advice to the women who would be premier.

Insiders say at the top of the Premier's inner sanctum is her father, Henry Palaszczuk, from whom she seeks ongoing advice and guidance.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk with her father Henry Palaszczuk who formerly held the seat, election day, Richlands East State School polling booths. Photographer: Liam Kidston.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk with her father Henry Palaszczuk who formerly held the seat, election day, Richlands East State School polling booths. Photographer: Liam Kidston.

The veteran Labor Minister and former schoolteacher entered parliament in 1984 before his daughter took his of Inala seat in 2006.

The Premier is understood to often call her father following what can be demanding Question Times during parliament sitting weeks and takes his counsel after his visits to the regions, where he reports back on what he's hearing from the ground.

On the frequent trips away, he looks after Ms Palaszczuk's dog Winton - named after the far western Queensland town - when she is travelling, with insiders pointing out this means he is the first and last to see her.

And Mr Palaszczuk has been helping on the ground and visiting local electorate campaigns during this election.

Also in Ms Palaszczuk's inner circle are Labor state secretary and campaign director Julie-Ann Campbell and Evan Moorhead, who was her head of strategy until he left last year to work in the private sector.

Mr Moorhead has been drafted in by the Labor Party to provide guidance to head office this campaign.

Evan Moorhead, Former Waterford MP and chief political advisor for Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. Part-owns lobbying firm Anacta Strategies.Providing advice to the Labor Party for this campaign.
Evan Moorhead, Former Waterford MP and chief political advisor for Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. Part-owns lobbying firm Anacta Strategies.Providing advice to the Labor Party for this campaign.

Jon Persley is on leave from his role as assistant national Labor secretary representing the Right to head up strategy for the campaign.

He is considered a specialist in campaigning in regional Queensland and strategising marginal seats Labor must win to hold office.

Jon Persley. Pic: Glenn Barnes
Jon Persley. Pic: Glenn Barnes

 

Principle media adviser to the Premier Chris Taylor and principle adviser Brett Murphy are by the Premier's side throughout the campaign, working to plan press conferences and handle the constant stream of media inquiries.

Chris Taylor, Annastacia Palaszczuk's principle media advisor. Picture: Supplied Facebook
Chris Taylor, Annastacia Palaszczuk's principle media advisor. Picture: Supplied Facebook

 

Mr Murphy, a former chief-of-staff to Agricultural Minister Mark Furner, has been described as a "genius" at making things work, while Mr Taylor, who worked for the Bligh Government, is known as a steady pair of hands.

Meanwhile in the blue corner, Ms Frecklington is understood to keep a tight circle.

Insiders say her chief-of-staff Matthew Jeffries, who served as former LNP Leader Tim Nicholls' director of policy, is disciplined, focused and gets the difference between tactics and strategy.

Deputy Leader Tim Mander, Mr Jeffries and deputy chief-of-staff and media director Shaun Rigby are among those in what's described as being a tight-knit group.

Lincoln Folo, the party's campaign director, has been described as being a solid campaigner with his efforts in federal campaigns dubbed as "standouts".

Tim Mander, Deputy Leader of the LNP and treasury spokesman. LNP member for Everton Park. Housing and Public Works Minister under theNewman Government.
Tim Mander, Deputy Leader of the LNP and treasury spokesman. LNP member for Everton Park. Housing and Public Works Minister under theNewman Government.

Senator James McGrath, who was the campaign director for the LNP when Campbell Newman became premier in 2012, has been in regular contact over the past few months, while Rob Borbidge, who led the state between 1996 and 1998, is understood to be a source of advice.

Shaun Rigby, Deputy chief-of-staff and media director for Ms Frecklington. Former journalist who was deputy chief-of-staff (communications) for Tim Nicholls.
Shaun Rigby, Deputy chief-of-staff and media director for Ms Frecklington. Former journalist who was deputy chief-of-staff (communications) for Tim Nicholls.

Ms Frecklington is also understood to highly value the counsel of Lawrence Springborg, the father of the LNP.

One insider said the Opposition Leader has a network of national support which reverberates from the Prime Minister down, who was in Queensland this week, including from Treasurer Josh Frydenberg.

She is understood to have a great relationship with South Australia Premier Steven Marshall.

Frontbenchers Jarrod Bleijie, Andrew Powell and David Janetzki are also considered close allies.

Jarrod Bleijie, Kawana MP and LNP education and industrial relations spokesman. Chief strategist in the parliament. Attorney-General under the Newman government.
Jarrod Bleijie, Kawana MP and LNP education and industrial relations spokesman. Chief strategist in the parliament. Attorney-General under the Newman government.

 

THE FULL LIST OF INFLUENCERS:

 

LABOR

Jon Persley

Right Faction leader. Labor's assistant national secretary but is currently heading up strategy for the campaign.

 

Gary Bullock

Powerful Left Faction figure. Heads the United Workers Union.

Gary Bullock. Pic: Peter Wallis
Gary Bullock. Pic: Peter Wallis

 

Evan Moorhead

Former Waterford MP and chief political advisor for Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. Part-owns lobbying firm Anacta Strategies.Providing advice to the Labor Party for this campaign.

 

Julie-Ann Campbell

Queensland Labor Party state secretary and campaign director. Member of the Left Faction.

 

Brett Murphy

Principle advisor to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. Previously chief of staff to Agricultural Minister Mark Furner.

 

Chris Taylor

Principle media advisor to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. Been in media for decades, including as an education media advisorunder Anna Bligh.

 

Cameron Milner

One of Annastacia Palaszczuk's former chief strategists. Helped guide the Beattie Government to landslide victories as Labor'sstate secretary in 2001 and 2004. Helping with strategy this campaign.

 

 

Cameron Milner. Pic: Tara Croser.
Cameron Milner. Pic: Tara Croser.

 

 

LNP

Matthew Jeffries

Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington's chief-of-staff. Served as director of policy for Tim Nicholls in the Opposition office.

 

Shaun Rigby

Deputy chief-of-staff and media director for Ms Frecklington. Former journalist and was deputy chief-of-staff (communications) for former LNP Leader Tim Nicholls.

 

Lincoln Folo

Campaign director for the LNP in Queensland. Former federal staffer. Initially replaced Brad Henderson as state director beforetaking over as campaign director in 2015 ahead of the 2016 federal election.

Lincoln Folo.
Lincoln Folo.

 

James McGrath

Current Queensland Senator. Campaign director for the LNP in Queensland from 2010 to 2012.

 

Tim Mander

Deputy Leader of the LNP and treasury spokesman. LNP member for Everton Park. Housing and Public Works Minister under the Newman Government.

 

Jarrod Bleijie

LNP education and industrial relations spokesman. Chief strategist in the parliament. LNP member for Kawana. Attorney-Generaland Justice Minister under the Newman Government.

 

Andrew Powell

LNP member for Glass House. LNP state development, manufacturing, infrastructure and planning spokesman. Environment and HeritageProtection Minister under the Newman Government.

Andrew Powell MP with Deb Frecklington.
Andrew Powell MP with Deb Frecklington.

 

 

David Janetzki

LNP member for Toowoomba South. LNP Attorney-General and justice spokesman. Former deputy Opposition Whip.

 

David Janetzki MP.
David Janetzki MP.

 

 

 

Originally published as The real powerhouses behind Qld politics

Julie-Ann Campbell, Queensland Labor Party state secretary and campaign director. Member of the Left Faction.
Julie-Ann Campbell, Queensland Labor Party state secretary and campaign director. Member of the Left Faction.
Brett Murphy, Principal Advisor to Annastacia Palaszczuk.
Brett Murphy, Principal Advisor to Annastacia Palaszczuk.


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