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MY former radio colleague Mark Parton is about to become an ACT politician. It’s something he’s coveted for a long time and he’s well qualified and ready to hit the ground running, but I’m begging him not to.
Formally endorsed by the Liberal Party and three months out from the ACT election, the former 2CC breakfast personality is already speaking and acting like a politician.
An article in “The Canberra Times” probed his first political backflip on poker machines in the casino (he was for them, the Libs are opposed to them).
“I think one of the healthiest things about the Liberal Party is that it is such a broad church. I know that there will be some things that we may disagree on. But I’m also a team man,” he is quoted as saying.
In resorting to the well-worn and mealy mouthed “broad church” slogan, he’s hinted he may be just another of the many unimaginative and compliant members who consistently inhabit the ACT Assembly, which is the last thing Canberra needs.
His comments suggest he’s ready, willing and able to employ the disingenuous dexterity required to be able to stand for nothing while sitting on the fence and toeing the party line.
The ACT Assembly needs somebody who refuses to become just another party politician. Somebody who is a genuine representative and advocate for their community.
Parton will win a seat in the Assembly and he deserves to. He’s young, energetic and passionate and could bring something refreshing to politics in the ACT. But does he have the kahounas to do it?
The nation just had something very succinct to say about professional politicians and party politics. They don’t like them. The electorate, real people, wants genuine people to represent them not puppets.
Parton has a golden opportunity to become that “real” representative.
He knows how to use the media, is well connected to the community and has interviewed enough mealy-mouthed politicians to know how a mealy-mouthed politician sounds. Please Mark, don’t become just another politician.
Mike Welsh blogs at mikewelshpolitics.com