Cathy McGowan has made a bold prediction on how many independent candidates will get over the line at the election this Saturday.
Having paved the way for the independent movement at the upcoming poll, the former member for Indi weighed in while appearing on the ABC’s Q+A on Thursday night.
Ms McGowan said of 23 independents standing in this year’s election, just three would win.
She predicted independents would snag seats in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth.
Ms McGowan said many independents were running in safe seats where the odds were stacked against them.
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“What most of the communities are doing are trying to get better representation. They’re definitely wanting to make their seats marginal. And if they can get over the line, that’s a good thing,” she said.
Ms McGowan said as well as high-profile independents in affluent inner city electorates, many were standing in regional, National-held seats.
“I don’t know if they can actually get over the line. But there’s a number of National Party seats that are gonna come really close,” she said.
Liberal Senator James Patterson said his main desire for the next parliament was for a majority government.
Senator Paterson claimed independents jeopardised stability.
“It’s a vote for a weaker government and a weaker country, leading to uncertainty,” he said.
“In uncertain times that’s the last thing we need. I want a strong majority government. “Obviously I would prefer it be a Liberal/National one. But if it weren’t, I would rather it be a Labor one than a weak hung parliament.”
The panellist dissected the major parties’ competing policies on housing.
UNSW economist Gigi Foster agreed in principle with the Coalition’s plan to allow first home buyers to access their superannuation to use as a deposit.
“Let them put it into housing if they like, or do something else, particularly if they’re young people,” she said.
She said there remained an issue with housing stock the government also needed to address.
Ms McGowan agreed several practical issues remained with the parties’ housing policies.
“With this housing problem, it doesn’t actually do supplyanddemand. It doesn’t link with TAFE – how do we get enough builders? How do we get enough infrastructure? It doesn’t work with the Master Builders Association to make it all come together,” she said.
“It just frustrates me no end that we actually don’t try and really solve the problem.”
Ms McGowan ended with a message to young people on how their vote could shape Australia’s future.
“If we keep doing the same thing, we’re going to get the same result,” she said.
“That’s one of the reasons why…so many young people are getting behind their independents and saying, ‘I just want someone with a vision, someone who’s actually going to represent me and my generation and act on it.’ And it’s no surprise that climate change comes to the fore.”