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“Clown” jibe doesn’t raise a laugh

Saturday, 16th February, 2019

The National Party’s campaign message has not gone down very well in Broken Hill. The National Party’s campaign message has not gone down very well in Broken Hill.

By Emily McInerney

An election postcard distributed this week by the National Party promises that they will “stand up to protect your water and not let it be stolen by town clowns”.

“Labor and the Greens want to cut water from NSW towns and farms so that our water fills overflowing lakes in South Australia,” the postcard states.

It finishes by encouraging people to “Vote 1 The Nationals - It’s your time”.

Independent NSW MP Jeremy Buckingham described it as a bad joke and a sign of the Nationals’ desperation.

“These are just more lies by a desperate National Party that will be thrown out come the March 23 election,” Mr Buckingham said.

“It is symptomatic of a corrupt organisation that is failing to take responsibility for the decisions they have made.

“These decisions included draining the Menindee Lakes, allowing a pipeline and letting irrigators desecrate the Darling River.”

Mr Buckingham said many people had passed on the postcard to him.

“They think it is a joke, they’ve treated the community with contempt and like fools.

“But they can see through them and they’ve seen through this trick.”

Barwon’s Labor candidate Darriea Turley said it was propaganda directed at irrigators.

“I’ve been contacted by members of the community asking how the National Party could stoop so low and be so disrespectful,” said Ms Turley.

“Especially after all the fish kills in the Darling River; it is the lowest of the low.

“It shows they are desperate to win the seat of Barwon.

“What they have to remember is they created the water disaster.

“The National Party have had their time and they’ve continually ignored the advice of the community.

“Now the mess needs to be cleared up because of the National Party.”

Shadow Water Minister Chris Minns said that Labor was focused on solutions and that the Liberals and Nationals’ record speaks for itself.

“The Nationals have robbed water from their own communities and towns and sacked investigators who were tasked with protecting it,” said Mr Minns.

“If the community believes that the system is broken and rigged against their towns and communities they will vote Michael Daley and Labor for change.”

Nationals Member for Barwon, Kevin Humphries said the idea behind the campaign came out from a newspaper article.

The story was called ‘Fish and Ships’ and was a comparison of the water situation in Menindee and South Australia after the fish kills.

“The campaign came off the back of The Weekly Times story and was targeting Sydney media and a poke at SA,” Mr Humphries said. “The wording may have been ambiguous.

“Why should NSW and the Northern Basin be copping it when there have been no flows in the system?.

“One of the real issues is what happens when the water is released.

“South Australia has been razzing us about the issue but then they want the water.”

Mr Humphries said the Nationals wanted to readjust the whole management of the system.

“The big issue is what will happen to the water when we’ve got it. We need to be able to keep the water when we’ve got it.”

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