Standing up for Canberra

The Chronicle: 2016 Post-Election Wrap up

Well, it’s over. The longest election of the modern era is behind us.

Campaigning is an endurance sport, and it’s a test of stamina as much as strength. Not even the Tour de France goes for eight weeks.

None of us could make it through without the help of those around us.

Over two hundred people volunteered on the campaign, manning pre-polling booths armed with bright red How To Vote cards, knocking on the doors of friends, neighbours and strangers, and driving off in the early hours to bash in a new batch of signs.

And then, all of a sudden, Election Day comes and goes.

Within 48 hours, the signs are down and packed away. The political advertising disappears from the page and the screen. You can once again visit a shopping centre without the risk of being confronted by an overly-enthusiastic political candidate.

Elections are more than about ticking a name every three years.

At their core, elections are about having someone in the community put their hand up and say, I want to help.

I know people are sceptical about politicians. I’m a politician, and I’m sceptical myself sometimes.

But I try to remind myself that, no matter which party a candidate is representing, they’re standing for election because they want to help.

One of the joys and one of the challenges about being a politician is that people come to you with problems.

And you do everything you can to help. True, some problems are easier to solve than others. But you’re motivated by the same desire that saw you put your hand in the first place, and say you want to help.

So I hope the next time we hear from each other isn’t at the ballot box.

After all, we all need help sometimes. I only made it through the campaign through the help of others. If I can help you, let me know.