Meet the minor-party candidates hoping to shape the election campaign in Barker
The Greens, Nationals and United Australia Party have all named candidates for the 2022 federal election.
Minor party candidates are lining up to contest the upcoming federal election in Barker, the sprawling electorate which includes the Murraylands.
The Greens, Nationals and United Australia Party have all picked candidates to face off against three-term Liberal MP Tony Pasin on May 21.
Labor had not yet named a candidate 24 hours ahead of a Thursday deadline.
Over the coming weeks, Murray Bridge News will ask each candidate about the top issues you nominate in our citizens’ agenda survey – click the button below to have your say.
In the meantime, here’s a quick guide to the names you’ll see on your ballot paper.
The Greens: Rosa Hillam
Meningie artist Rosa Hillam will run again for the Greens at the 2022 election.
The health of the Murray-Darling Basin has long been an issue on which she has campaigned, both inside and outside political circles.
She also hoped to draw attention to the need for better mental health, disability care, domestic violence, drug rehab and aged care facilities in rural areas.
“I’ll represent the people of Barker’s values in parliament and hold the major parties to account,” she said.
“Together we can create a fairer and cleaner future for all of us.”
Ms Hillam, also a carer and former farm worker, secured 6.8 per cent of the vote when she ran at the 2019 election.
More information: greens.org.au.
United Australia: David Swiggs
A Mount Gambier farmer and businessman will stand for “freedom, sovereignty, democracy and truth” under the United Australia Party banner.
David Swiggs previously ran a furniture retail outlet and spent 10 years as a banker.
He said he had put his hand up for the upcoming poll so he could protect Barker’s communities from government-imposed mandates and lockdowns.
“People living in this country should be able to freely go about their business of supporting and nurturing their families, and not be impeded by government overreach and control,” he said.
“I see this opportunity as a way to help end the mandates, lift restrictions and begin to heal our broken communities after two and a half years of Liberal government failure.
“We need a very strong economic and social plan to resurrect the wellbeing and peace of mind of the nation.”
The backing of billionaire Clive Palmer would help his party achieve that aim, he said.
More information: www.unitedaustraliaparty.org.au.
The Nationals: Jonathan Pietzsch
Tintinara farmer Jonathan Pietzsch will throw his hat into the ring for the National Party.
The 33-year-old father of two and CFS volunteer hoped to serve as a voice for regional South Australia in Canberra, "a voice that has been missing for too long".
His priorities would include health funding, solving the housing crisis and increasing the supply of skilled workers in the region.
“Nationals MP’s on the east coast have banged on doors in Canberra and fought the fight for their regions,” he said.
“We are proud of our record of delivering for local communities: improving roads, supporting jobs and businesses through drought and taking practical measures to reduce the pressures caused by increased prices.”
Mr Pietzsch, the Nationals’ state president, was the party’s candidate for MacKillop at the recent state election.
More information: www.sanationals.org.au/jonathan-pietzsch.
Disclosure: Murray Bridge News accepted the United Australia Party’s suggestion that Mr Swiggs be described as a farmer as well as a businessman, subsequent to the publication of this story.
You can help keep local stories like this one free for everyone to read. Subscribe to Murray Bridge News today and support your independent, locally owned news service, plus get access to exclusive stories you won’t find anywhere else, from just $5 a month.