RUSSELL Broadbent returned one of the best results for the Liberal Party, recording more than a seven per cent swing – the state average against Labor in Victoria was three per cent. It well and truly establishes McMillan as a safe Liberal seat. But that’s not the way Russell Broadbent is looking at it.
“It’s more a feeling of relief,” Mr Broadbent said on Monday. “I go into every campaign with a feeling of trepidation. “When the seat of McMillan started it was considered a marginal seat and I’ve gone into every campaign expecting a close election. “It’s a marginal seat in my mind, but with the swing as it stands at 7.5 per cent of the vote, the pendulum now says it’s a safe seat. “In this election we’ve broken through. “I’m humbled and astonished at the result.” While counting and recounting continues, along with preferences, the Australian Electoral Commission has not officially announced Mr Broadbent as the returning member. However, the ABC called McMillan as Mr Broadbent’s at just 6.30 – a mere 30 minutes after polls closed.
With 91 of 92 polling booths retuned, the top results were: * Russell Broadbent, Liberal 50.46% * Anthony Naus, Labor 25.13% * Malcolm McKelvie, Greens 7.47% * Matt Sherry, Palmer United Party 4.8% * David Amor, Katter’s Australia Party 2.36% The record number of candidates for McMillan at 13 did little to dissuade voters from the Liberal Party, however the success of the Palmer United Party and Katter’s Australia Party was a surprise for some. Mr Broadbent did not comment on whether the minor parties’ numbers would sway his intentions.
“People voted knowing I will stand up for them,” he said. “Even on controversial or divisive issues, they know I will stand up in the Federal Government for them.” Mr Broadbent said one of his first duties as a member of the new government is to push for spending in aged care. “Spending in aged care needs to be a priority,” he said. “The ageing population needs at least double the financing than it’s getting over the next 10 years – and that’s on top of the NDIS. “That’s why I’ll be pushing for support for a new hospital at Warragul, Latrobe Valley, Wonthaggi and for the upgrades currently at Leongatha.”