Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Danieli seeks Federal pre-selection

Campaspe Shire councillor wants to stand for Federal Parliament

TRENT HORNEMAN January 30, 2013 4:11am

Robert Danieli

Campaspe Shire councillor Robert Danieli will throw his hat in the ring to join Federal Parliament.

Cr Danieli, who was elected as Kyabram-Deakin Ward councillor in October, will nominate for pre-selection in the Senate or House of Representatives in the Katter Australia Party.

Cr Danieli was elected president of the party’s Kyabram branch earlier this month.

He said the Katter Australia Party would field candidates in every Victorian upper and lower house seat in this year’s federal election and would also look at candidates in next year’s Victorian election.

Cr Danieli said he would throw his hat in the ring for pre-selection, along with other branch members.

‘‘I am looking at standing for pre-selection, but there are several other excellent candidates within the party who will put their hand up as well,’’ he said.

The branch will select its Senate candidate in February, with a House of Representatives candidate to contest the federal seat of Murray at a later date.

‘‘It is the party’s intent to field a candidate in every electorate in Victoria, both in the upper and lower houses,’’ he said.

The Murray electorate is one of the safest seats in Australia, with two changes of office in the past 64 years. Sitting member Sharman Stone has represented the electorate since 1996.

An online betting agency this week installed the Coalition a $1.01 favourite to win the seat at the next election, with any other party a $50 chance to take the seat.

Despite the odds, Cr Danieli believes the Katter Australia Party could topple the Coalition at the election.

‘‘Sharman Stone has done a hell of a lot of good for this region, but no seat is unwinnable,’’ he said.

‘‘If there is a groundswell of support then you never know what might happen with the right candidate.’’

Cr Danieli said he could take a leave of absence from Campaspe Shire Council if pre-selected.

‘‘I will do whatever is in the best interest of the Campaspe Shire,’’ he said.

‘‘Councillors have run for state and federal elections before ... if it means taking a temporary leave of absence then I will.’’

Cr Danieli said the Kyabram branch, which is in its infancy, had about 40 members.

He said the party wanted to protect farming communities, with Labor and the Greens in its sights.

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