Sunday, 26 October 2014

Baird Government pays the price for corruption within its ranks

Image from ABC News 26 October 2014

NSW Labor claimed victory in both the by-election for Newcastle (Crakanthorp) and by-election for Charlestown (Harrison) about two hours after polls closed on Saturday night.

The NSW Electoral Commission recorded that Tim Crakanthorp had received 36.95% of first preference votes as at 12.59 pm and Jodi Harrison 49.39% of first preference votes as at 2.01 pm on Sunday 26 October 2014.

Both seats had been without a sitting member since NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption investigations revealed that the then NSW Liberal MP for Charlestown Andrew Cornwell and then NSW Liberal MP for Newcastle were involved in receipt and use of irregular and/or unlawful political donations.

Operation Spicer and Credo hearings saw a total of thirteen Liberal Party federal, state and local government politicians either resign, move to the cross benches and/or stand aside from parliamentary positions until investigations findings are published.

Knowing that defeat in these by-elections was inevitable the Baird Coalition Government chose not to contest the seats.

However, in a little over five months’ time in March 2013, the NSW Liberal-National Coalition is expected to have candidates stand in these seats at the state general election.

So Crakanthorp and Harrison have only a short time to make their mark on Hunter region voters before they have to fight to keep their newly-won seats in the NSW Legislative Assembly.

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