Election time: Who’s on the ballot?

KASPER KAASGAARD

vote-661888

Knowing who your electoral choices are can only be beneficial to the voting process

With the local elections in Queensland less than two weeks away and campaigning is in full swing, we checked in with four citizens in the Brisbane area to see if the pubic is listening.

They will be choosing from seven candidates when picking the next mayor, as well as voting on the 26 seats in council to be filled – one from each area, or ward.

Since the last election, the borders of the wards have been redrawn causing candidates to run in new areas.

Not everybody has noticed.

Mike Chase, 52

Can you name the mayoral candidates?

”I know that Graham Quirk will be the liberal candidate. I’m not too sure who the Labour candidate is. The Greens would be the other major party, I assume, but I don’t know their candidate either. There hasn’t been much advertisement, really. It’s been very quiet compared to state and federal elections.”

Since the last election, the wards have changed. Do you know which one you belong to now?

”Uuuuh, I know Matt Bourke is the local member. I’m just trying to think but I don’t think I know, sorry.”

That’s alright. Do you think people in general know and care enough about politics?

”I think they care. But with three levels of government you get fairly bombarded with political candidates. People are probably more aware of federal and state, only because it gets more media attention.”

Bella Harvey-Sutton, 19

Can you name the mayoral candidates?

”No, I don’t know anything about it. I’ve been away for so long. I guess I’ll probably look at it before I actually vote.”

Since the last election, the wards have changed. Do you know which one you belong to now?

“Oh, well then I don’t know. I don’t even live where I’ll be voting. That’s just where my dad lives.”

Can I take that to say you don’t know your local candidates?

“Yeah. I think there are signs there. I’ve seen them around other areas but I don’t know.”

Do you reckon people in general know enough?

“No, especially people my age. I don’t think they think it makes a change if they vote or not.”

Layton Butler, 21

Can you name the mayoral candidates?

“I believe Labour is Rod Harding. I think – I don’t know much about politics.”

Is it important to you?

“No, not really.”

Since the last election, the wards have changed. Do you know which one you belong to now?

”I’m pretty sure it’s Algester.” (Algester is actually part of the Parkinson Ward)

And do you know any of the local candidates there?

”There are signs everywhere but no, I don’t.”

Heather Tyson, 36

Can you name the mayoral candidates?

“The Labour guy is O-something. I don’t know, I’ve seen the signs around. I know his face. Isn’t there a female candidate as well?”

Actually they are all male. Do you wish you knew more?

“Yea, I usually just leave it for last minute and then have a look. I usually just vote for Labour.”

Since the last election, the wards have changed. Do you know which one you belong to now?

“Have they? I think I’m still with Greenslopes.” (Which is actually a part of Coorparoo).

And do you know any of the local candidates?

“I’ve just seen the signs around and the pamphlets in the mail. I’m not too sure.”

In case you were wondering, the candidates for lord mayor of Brisbane are:

Graham Quirk (currently holding office), LNP
Rod Harding, Labour
Ben Pennings, Greens
Jeffrey Hodges, Consumer Rights & No-Tolls Party
Jarrod Wirth, independent
Jim Eldridge, independent
Karel Boele, independent

The local elections in Queensland will take place on March 19, how aware were you of your local candidates?

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