Withdrawal symptoms

Some good news at last for the Nationals: Elisa Roberts’ off-again, on-again, off-again, on-again campaign for re-election as independent member for Gympie is now off again. Roberts’ withdrawal comes too late for her name to be removed from the ballot paper, so she will face no obstacle if she feels like changing her mind again. Otherwise, the seat should return to its natural home as a Nationals seat: their candidate is David Gibson, general manager of the Gympie Times and a former army officer.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

16 comments on “Withdrawal symptoms”

  1. on anthony greens site a news article states:

    Under the Electoral Act, Ms Roberts would then have to resign if she were elected, causing a by-election in the seat.

    very messy

  2. Wouldn’t it bring back memories if this seat went to a byelection and the Parliament was hung after this election.

    The Nats will have to drop the seat for Super By-Election Man Frank Tanti to run … LOL.

  3. Roberts is a nutcase! Valium, sleeping pills, a dog called Popsickle! What’s next?! The electorate is better off without her … but this is Queensland and stranger things have happened. I want her to win the electorate just to see the dynamics it will throw up.

  4. If she is elected she is elected. There are many 19th century cases of MPs elected against their will after being nominated without consent. Some of them actually then took up their seats despite protestations before hand.

    If she was elected and refused to serve, she could simply resign and there would be a by-election.

    Once nominations close, only a death stops the election. Remember Pauline Hanson being disendorsed by the Liberal Party and still being elected.

    And before someone raises the American being elected Governor after he was killed in a plane crash, that’s a different electoral system Many American states have no provision for by-election in-between the bi-annual November elections. All vacancies are filled by nomination.

  5. just a question
    Is it possible that Ms Roberts by standing in these circumstances
    gives some one else the right to cause a by election if
    anyone other than her wins?

  6. Antony it was actually the Governor of Missouri (Mel Carnahan) who was elected to the US Senate from Missouri in 2000, after he was killed in a plane crash. The defeated candidate (how would you be) John Ashcroft went on to be Attorney General.
    Interestingly in 2002, two Senate candidates were replaced on the ballot a few weeks out from the election, one in NJ (Robert Torricelli) due to corruption, and one in Minessota (Paul Wellings) due to also being killed in a plane crash. In the latter case, Wellings was replaced by former VP Walter Mondale, who was unsuccessful in his bid.

  7. Wellstone, not Wellings. Curiously Wellstone’s death was even closer to the election than Carnahan’s. Demonstrating the inconsistency different states have for their election laws; even for federal offices like the US Senate.

  8. I’m quite sad that Roberts has chosen to pull out, because her presence in parliament was a plus, but I can understand why she’d do it in the circumstances.

    It would now seem that Gibson has basically a free run, but I’d still love to see Roberts get over the line anyway – it would be the ultimate show of support in the circumstances.

  9. How can anyone be sad about getting some much needed closure? It is sad that she was so volatile about such an important decision. Being our representative in State Parliament is a privilege, not some play thing that can be turned on and off depending on your mood. At least the other candidates have been working hard for my vote.

  10. I think that many of Elisa Robert’s loyal supporters will vote for the Labor candidate from Brisbane.
    They have had enough of the National bully boy tactics.
    Who knows what could happen with prefrences after that.

  11. Anthony, you’ll be indicted for inciting suicide.

    I don’t understand her decision. Taking Valium and sitting in the Qld Parliament are known to have the same effect.

  12. From the article above:

    But Ms Roberts now says she changed her mind after the Electoral Commissioner told her she could not withdraw from the election once she had nominated.

    I don’t buy that. Last week she knew full well she’d be on the ballot paper:

    Asked if she would change her mind if her constituents pushed her past the post first, she said: “There will be a by-election on the next day.”

    Look up the word capricious in the dictionary and you’ll see picture of Elisa Roberts.

Comments are closed.