Page candidates: Who's who in the political zoo
WITH six weeks until voters head to the polls to decide who will run the country in next federal election, we take a look at the local characters of putting their hand up to be the next Member for Page.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has called the federal election of the 46th Australian Parliament to be held Saturday, May 18.
To nominate as a candidate the lodgement of nomination period for both House of Representatives and Senate candidates closes occurs at exactly midday on Tuesday, April 23.
The electorate of Page includes the Lismore, Kyogle, Richmond Valley and Clarence River local government areas as well as parts of Ballina Shire and the Coffs Harbour LGA.
Page is a marginal seat that has gone with government at every election since 1990. It was won by National Kevin Hogan at the 2013 election.
Tally Room assessment: Page is a very marginal seat. Labor has a real shot at gaining back the seat.
Nationals - Kevin Hogan (incumbent)
The former school teacher and financial planner was first elected in 2013, when he defeated Labor MP of two terms Janelle Saffin on a wafer thin margin. He won re-election again in 2016, with an 0.8 per cent swing against him. His main focus has been the economic development of the Northern Rivers, and has managed to deliver millions of dollars in infrastructure grants for various projects across the region. He has also been a consistent opponent of coal-seam gas industry, which neutralised Labor and Greens opponents when it was a hot button election issue.
Labor - Patrick Deegan
The Casino man manages a regional service supporting families that are impacted by domestic violence, homelessness, mental health issues and financial stress. He works from Lismore, Casino and Grafton offices. He has lived on the Northern Rivers most of his life and is a long-term member of the Labor Party. Mr Deegan has previously said his campaign will be based on "standing up for the working people...impacted by cuts to penalty rates and who want proper funding for health, education and agriculture in our region." He has also listed services and infrastructure as a focus, including transport and NBN services. He has since launched a number of election promises alongside shadow ministers, including funding for blackspot areas along Summerland Way.
Greens - Daniel Reid
The 28-year-old university student and fourth generation son of the Northern Rivers is pledging to hold other parties to account on climate change, human rights and political donations from corporations. Mr Reid also said his policies included harmonisation regarding drug issues. In a press conference earlier this year, he said 70 per cent of people in Australia had a severe mistrust of politicians and a sincere belief politicians only acted in their own interest. But he said it was time for people to be able to trust those who represented them. "If this is not indicative we need change of governance in Australia then I don't know what is," he said. "It's time to remove parties who have vested interests from large corporate and sizable personal donors."He has also discussed the importance of funding for health, education and childcare, creating secure jobs and supporting businesses that don't compromise our environment and wellbeing. Mr Reid is studying political science and governance at Southern Cross University but will reduce his studies to fulfil his political commitments.
Independent - Fiona Leviny
Former Nationals Senate candidate Fiona Leviny has left her party affiliations behind to pursue a career in politics as an independent. The Southgate cattle breeder has opened electorate offices in Grafton and Lismore. As a Nationals member for seven years, Ms Leviny decided to step away from the party when party members decided to support the One Nation "it's okay to be white" motion. As a strong advocate for the anti-coal seam gas mining movement on the Northern Rivers, Ms Leviny worked on the campaign to make the Northern Rivers a CSG-free zone. Ms Leviny has also been involved in arts and community organisations, including the Grafton Regional Gallery fundraiser Gate To Plate.
United Australia Party - John Mudge
John Mudge is currently a partner and head of tax, compliance and legals with iBusness Group. As a registered tax and ASIC agent, he has previously worked as a public practice principal with Centennial Money Group and as an executive with the Australian Tax Office. Running as a candidate for the United Australia Party, Mr Mudge aligns himself with the party's founder Clive Palmer. The party has plans to itself on revise the current Australian Government's Refugee Policy and creating changing the funding that continuously contributes to the welfare of the Australian community.
Animal Justice Party - Alison Waters
Local domestic and family violence worker Alison Waters has lived and worked in Lismore since 2001. Alison works at the Northern Rivers Community Legal Centre and is standing as an Animal Justice Party (AJP) candidate in the seat of Page. She previously stood for the seat of Lismore in the NSW election but was unsuccessful.
Alison is passionate about the protection of koala habitat, real action on climate change, and the banning of greyhound racing and other industries that use animals for sport and entertainment.
The Animal Justice Party (AJP) is a political party that formed in 2009 in response to the growing number of voters who feel strongly that much more needs to be done through our parliamentary systems to assist the wellbeing of animals. In 2015 the AJP made history when Mark Pearson became the first person in Australia to be elected to Parliament on an animal protection platform.
Christian Democratic Party - Peter Walker
The Christian Democratic Party has been approached several times for information on this candidate.