The Saturday Paper: Inside the independent campaigns that may decide the election, 15th Jan 2022

The Saturday Paper: Inside the independent campaigns that may decide the election, 15th Jan 2022

How a movement that began in earnest a decade ago, built on grassroots representation, could affect at least eight seats at the next election. By Margo Kingston.

You can read article excerpts about Zoe here:

Zoe Daniel, the former ABC journalist who is running as an independent in Goldstein, told The Saturday Paper she had chosen not to employ Reed, preferring a local campaign team. Angela Pippos, another former ABC journalist and a friend since university, became her paid media manager and confidante after urging her to stand. The campaign pays five other staff, and the rest are volunteers. Daniel boasts 2000 locals “actively engaged” in the campaign and a kitty of more than $250,000.

Daniel says her connection with Holmes à Court is “fairly loose”. Climate 200 has given $100,000 to her campaign, matching local donations. “We have the convo on what we need, what will work and what we need to pay for.”

Daniel’s campaign is unsurprisingly the most prepared and media savvy. Recognising the dearth of Goldstein community media, she decided “to do our own media”. She has started a video report for social media and a podcast where she has interviewed businesswoman Sam Mostyn on gender equity and McGowan on politics. Sky News has approached her with an offer to host a debate with the sitting MP.

Like some other candidates, Daniel uses the issues emerging from KTCs as a launching pad for developing policy through community discussion. She is planning a campaign ideas summit and has established a youth wing, as have some other candidates…

As former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull points out, Morrison’s bet is that progressive liberals will hold their noses and vote conservative. Turnbull, who has reserved his right to resign from the Liberal Party and endorse Wentworth’s Allegra Spender, also notes that independents are taking on a huge, new challenge: it is one thing to beat widely reviled, unrepresentative MPs such as Mirabella and Abbott, and quite another to take out an ineffective moderate backbencher in Wentworth, North Sydney or Mackellar, a libertarian in Goldstein, or the treasurer in Kooyong.


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