Saturday, March 27, 2021

2021 Tasmanian State Election Guide: Braddon

 This is the Braddon electorate guide for the 2021 Tasmanian State Election.  (Link to main 2021 election preview page, including links to other electorates.)  If you find these guides useful, donations are very welcome (see sidebar), but please only donate in these difficult times if you can afford to do so.  Note: if using a mobile you may need to use the view web version option at the bottom of the page to see the sidebar.

Braddon (Currently 3 Liberal 2 Labor). 
North-west and western Tasmania including Devonport, Burnie and Ulverstone


Note to candidates: As the number of candidates becomes large, continually changing link and bio details could consume a lot of my time.  It's up to you to get your act together and have your candidacy advertised on a good website that I can find easily well ahead of the election.  On emailed request I may make one free website link change per candidate at my discretion; fees will be charged beyond that.  Bio descriptions and other text will not be changed on request except to remove any material that is indisputably false.  

I am not listing full portfolios for each MP, only the most notable positions.  Candidates are listed incumbent-first and then alphabetically, except if stated otherwise. 

The ballot paper order in Braddon is Shooters, Labor, Liberal, Greens, ungrouped.  Candidates appear in rotated order within each party column.

Jeremy Rockliff, incumbent, Deputy Premier, Minister for Education, Trade, Mental Health etc.
Roger Jaensch, incumbent, Minister for Human Services, Housing, Environment etc
Felix Ellis, first-term incumbent backbencher elected on countback during term, plumber
Adam Brooks, former MHA (elected 2010) who resigned seat in 2019 following conflict of interest issues, mining industry businessman
Lara Hendriks, Executive Director of Business and Trade for Department of State Growth
Stacey Sheehan, real estate agent (One Agency Collins), Devonport branch party president

On 8 April it was reported that Brooks is to be summonsed to face charges of failing to correctly store ammunition, which he denies and says he will contest vigorously.  

Shane Broad, Shadow Minister for Infrastructure, Primary Industries etc, agricultural scientist (PhD)
Anita Dow, first-term incumbent, former Mayor of Burnie, nurse
Amanda Diprose, Central Coast councillor
Justine Keay, former federal MP for Braddon (2016-9)
Michelle Rippon, teacher, education unionist, candidate for Montgomery (LegCo) in 2019

Greens candidates are listed in endorsed ticket order
Darren Briggs, emergency doctor, small tourist accommodation operator
Emily Murray, nurse, has co-ordinated election campaigns for party
Tammy Milne, disability advocate, Devonport councillor between 2016-8, "Patriarchy Slayer"
Maureen Corbett, U3A instructor 
Phill Parsons, horticulturalist, also ran in 2018

Shooters, Fishers and Farmers
Kim Swanson, degree in agriculture, former horse stud manager, boutique winery co-owner, previous candidate

Craig Garland, fisherman, prominent independent for this seat at Braddon federal by-election, was intending to form new party The Local Party but it could not be registered in time.
Liz Hamer, farmer, also ran 2018 polling 141 votes.
Matthew Morgan, professional fisherman

For those seeking info on obscure Braddon candidates, this transcript of an Australia Institute forum may be useful.  

Prospects for Braddon

Braddon is an electorate where resource development and employment issues have historically been very significant, and the Green vote has lagged behind the rest of the state.  From time to time the electorate votes very strongly for a given party, so the seat produced the only 5/7 seat results in the old 35-seat system (1972 Labor and 1992 Liberal) and in 2014 it produced the new system's first 4/5 seat result.  In 2018 it produced a 3-2-0 result with primaries of Liberal 56.1%, Labor 27.3%, Lambie Network 5.9%, Greens 3.6%.  (The Greens were overtaken by Craig Garland.) 

Unlike in 2014, in 2018 Labor benefited from a relatively even split between their most successful candidates Broad and Dow.  If this split repeats it will be hard for the Liberals to win four seats unless there is a massive result for the party statewide, in which case either Labor MHA may lose.  On the other hand, it would take a big swing against the Liberals to knock them down to two.  

On the Liberal side Jeremy Rockliff will be returned, but Brooks (if re-endorsed) is a threat to Ellis and possibly Jaensch.  Ellis has had little time to build profile although he did receive a lot of publicity for his debut speech.  Jaensch fairly narrowly beat ticketmate Joan Rylah last time but it will be challenging for Ellis to beat him.  Brooks has been a strong vote-getter in the past but his career was sidelined by conflict of interest issues, leading to him resigning from parliament in 2019 after a critical Integrity Commission report about his use of a company email account.  Journalist Sean Ford, who knows this electorate very well, considers that Stacey Sheehan should defeat Ellis even if the Liberals do win four.  

On the Labor side Justine Keay is a within-party threat to the incumbents, perhaps more so Dow than Broad.  I am not sure that being a one-term MHR (and a troubled term at that) is necessarily enough to win, but she has very high name recognition so it will be interesting to see how she goes.  

The Green vote has crashed in Braddon and at the last election they were overtaken on preferences by independent Craig Garland.  The Greens have preselected a more respectable lead candidate this time but are a long long way from winning here again.  There has often been a good vote for fourth parties like Palmer United and JLN in Braddon - and could be in this case for Garland - but not enough so far to secure state seats.  Especially, I don't think Garland will replicate the by-election result, which was fuelled by dissatisfaction with the federal major parties and also by deeply unwise Liberal attacks on him as a candidate.  He is also running as an ungrouped independent, none of whom have won since 1959.  It will be interesting to see if he can increase his vote compared to 2018 (3%) though.

This electorate should also be watched for potential mid-term recounts as there has long been speculation about Rockliff retiring at some stage.  The selection of six candidates may be with an eye to this, but also avoids a 4-1 gender split.

Outlook for Braddon: Have been expecting 3-2-0, but 4-1-0 is possible in view of Labor's campaign issues.

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