PUP’s Tangney candidate Wayne Driver: @GuinevereHall interview


By Guinevere Hall

7 August 2013

I met with the genial Wayne Driver on a wet and windy day at a cafe in Canning Vale. He was excited to be interviewed; as a minor party candidate in a safe seat he doesn’t get attention from mainstream media.

He came across as a genuine, down-to earth family man concerned with grassroots issues that affect people he comes across in as SNF Australia Accounts Manager.

He said he had notified his party about the interview, but if the answer had been no he would have done it anyway.

Who is Wayne Driver?

I am a sales rep by trade working for the mining industries, married since 1997 and a father of three, involved with the Canning Vale junior football club and other sporting groups in the area.

How long have you been in politics?

Just this year.

What drove you to enter politics?

Lack of support from both major parties for what is classified as a safe seat for the Liberal Party. I’m targeting people who are dissatisfied with the major parties.

Why did you decide the Palmer United Party was a good fit for you?

We get a choice of how we get to vote. We have the party line but we also have a conscience vote on things that we believe our electorates may have their own opinions on. Within the party we have a voice of our own, almost like independents under the umbrella of the same name. We were asked by Australian Christians what our policy is on same-sex marriage, and the general reply from all candidates will be a conscience vote, following our own beliefs.

What do you see as the main issues in this election?

Strong leadership, health and education funding and basically be able to represent the people. That’s the big one, because no one is representing the people any more – they are representing their own party’s interests only.

What are the main issues specifically for Tangney?

Funding for education projects and community groups such as Communicare and sporting groups to keep people engaged and healthy.

Asylum seekers, and the policy that Clive Palmer put out recently about onshore processing?

Good idea – it’s easier to identify who they are when they come in with their documents. There are opportunities to do it with processing centres overseas but you don’t want to risk people’s lives, you don’t want them coming on boats and risking their lives, especially women and children. It’s not fair, especially on kids, to be put in those sorts of conditions and risks. It’s just wrong.

What’s the point in running for a safe seat?

Is any seat really safe? That’s the big question, to get the focus back on to the community and make both major parties see that people need to be listened to. We are moving too much to the American system – it’s the party line.

Will you challenge Liberal MP Dennis Jensen directly? Will you actually challenge him on his well-known stand on climate change and will you let the electorate know about him being one of the six MPs who abstained from the Stolen Generations apology?

I’m quite happy to challenge him, because we know climate change is happening –  we know there is a natural part of it but we have also sped it up by what we have been doing to the environment. So to say that it doesn’t happen denies the actual science. Stolen generation? I grew up in an area where there were a lot of indigenous people and a lot of their parents were from the stolen generation. We have to accept it happened, but we have to move on and say what we can do to rectify it and make sure it never happens again

Palmer Party policies?

One is to reduce costs to families, including removing the carbon tax as it is now and looking at other alternatives to reduce carbon emissions that doesn’t impact so much on families. We also want to review the whole tax system, because the average working bloke goes up a tax bracket after he goes up a certain amount of hours. How can you be productive when you get canned at the tax department? We should have one flat tax rate or smaller gaps between tax brackets.

Will you be using social media?

I have a Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/groups/419539924828226/where I am hoping to engage with the local community. People are saying it’s great to have someone different, and I’m hoping that will extend out further.

Do you have a campaign plan?

Letterbox drops, door-knocking, getting involved at community group level, come out and meet people, talk to people. It’s all about taking the campaign back to the grass roots, back to the people.

Are there any advertising campaigns planned at party level?

We are looking at them. We do get a certain amount back from the electoral office after the election, but we’re trying to minimise those costs.

Do you have a budget?

Clive Palmer has provided a certain amount of money per candidate. As long as we don’t do anything illegal or immoral he is happy for us to promote ourselves with it, get out in front of people and say ‘here we are’, pay for letterbox drops and corflute signs. We’ve been looking at bus stop signs, but we are trying to keep all our costs down. Already ten people asked for corflute signs in their front yard, which is not bad considering we have only just been launched. It’s a good way as it shows just the average person supports us – not big business, not the unions. We are here for everyone.

More of a grassroots movement than a top-down party directed?

We are. Clive Palmer gives us the opportunity to go out and be us rather than what he wants you to be. Be who you are, as that is what people are voting for. You can see that from the cross-section of people running nationally.

Where is the party likely to be successful? Is there any seat you are directly targeting?

I believe we can get Durack. Des Hedland is heavily involved in the community up there – he is very active and I believe he will get through.  Chamonix Terblanche in the Senate will have a very good chance.

Who will win?

Liberals, just, but hopefully a hung parliament with two or three of our members so we can get a say.


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  1. Wow, someone actually wants a hung parliament! I guess all that stuff Windsor and Oakshott have been banging on about finally got through to some people in politics … perhaps the 43rd Parliament has been more constructive than others like to say?

    • Wayne Driver says

      Hi Michael, the more people realise that there is alternatives and start giving those alternatives a go, true democracy prevails. The fact that I am not a “Professional” Politician and being in a forward thinking party allows me to truly be a representative of the electorate.

      • Maybe you’re right Wayne, but we got a minority government without really trying. Whether we can (or should) get another one by design is another question altogether. I am not sure Australia is ready for more of that at the moment.

        I don’t know whether the “alternatives” are really all that different to the major parties – there is a very common tendency in most people to lean to the Left or the Right in all political structures on the planet, it’s just a matter of how rarified their ideology really is. Small l or Large … small r or Really Right.

        All the candidates I have spoken to acknowledge that two-thirds of the vote is rusted-on Labor or Liberal, never to change their minds. The rest blow with the winds of understandable apathy, incomprehension and/or ignorance.

        With respect, I don’t think either of the things you mentioned make you able to represent anyone. I think it takes enormous courage to truly represent people, to pinpoint what our primary requirement of the Parliament is. Politicans, amateur and professional, generally lag way behind community requirements.

        At the moment, Kevin Rudd and Christine Milne have stated clearly they will represent my primary requirement in the 44th Parliament. Tony Abbott has stated he probably will not. The PUP sees the type of expectations I have as a matter of conscience for an elected representative at a vote, not as a matter of leadership. I don’t define that as representative.

        But I applaud you for participating in this project, for it’s the start of your journey to true representation.

    • Keith Hall says

      If the Liberals win the election it will be a minority government as they need the Nationals to govern!

      • This is a truism that has been bandied-around for 2 days as a joke, but it strikes at the heart of many matters.

      • Wayne Driver says

        That’s the good thing about a democracy Michael, we have choice. Unfortunately for the Labor Party, there is no guarantee that Bill Shorten will not once again knife Kevin Rudd. Bill Shorten has already stated he dreams of being PM, so are you voting for Rudd or Shorten or even possibly Swan?

        If you are in the Tangney electorate, what do you know about the Labor candidate or what he personally stands for? What involvement in the community has he had? All things to consider considering he is yet to do any interviews.

        I have had die hard Labor people approach me and say they are voting PUP in Tangney as they have zero confidence in the local Labor candidate as they hear nothing.

        Why do both Rudd and Abbott refuse to debate Clive Palmer in their up coming debate? Clive Palmer has put the challenge down but both are very silent on debating Clive Palmer on their or PUP policies.

        I am proud to take a challenge to the traditional two and offer a clear choice, but in the end, the voice of the electorate will be heard on the 7th of September. Remeber, every vote counts, every vote is important.

      • I guess we are talking about different choices Wayne – at this election, I am choosing to decide my leader on the basis of one important set of human rights.

        Interestingly, the Australian community, when polled on this issue, supports it into the 70th percentile, whether they be Australians of any faith, of any region, and any age.

        Even more interestingly, Australian politicians ignore or embrace this issue. I do not see that the PUP has offered much clarity on this issue at all.

        I basically don’t care who debates who, I have a clear choice on my important issue.

  2. Wayne Driver says

    Hi Michael, So PUP wanting to increase pensions to the elderly, the disabled and or service people and also bringing in on shore processing where we are saying to arrive by plane with your documents and not a dangerous boat and paying crimimals for the risk of life involved, will get you processed fairer and more quickly.

    This will also allow us to check that people are not on a Interpol wanted list as has been the case previously with a wanted terrorist and a known people smuggler. If that is not more humane than the current system of people dying at sea, I am sorry.

    In regards to human rights, you might want to ask your Labor candidate or the Party in regards ot “Bail In” legislation they are wanting to introduce. Interstingly, it was written by the new treasurer and if re-elected and the legislation gets up, will like in the US, allow financial institutions to take every bit of money in your account if the bank even remotely think they may have an issue. The same legislation that has crippled the US in the previous GFC. This legislation will also permit the financial institution to foreclose your mortgage even if your not in default, something that can not be done at present.

    You will not be able to even claim for compensation if the bank recovers, you will lose everything, like many did in the US.

    • All very interesting Wayne, but I think I’ve already said what will represent me and what will decide my vote.

    • Oh, and there’s still plenty of time for you and all the PUP candidates to show your colours on my issue (perhaps you can’t work out what it is?) or whether PUP’s just ‘yellow’ on it?

  3. Welcome to the fray Wayne Driver! I am happy to see a likely challenger to the Densen in my electorate, who I view as a smug incumbent on a personal agenda.

    I am delighted you do not deny climate change but disappointed you are against an ETS or carbon tax, as so many nations are now doing. It’s the most cost-effective way to drive cleaner energy and lockup CO2 through planting, forest retainment etc.

    • Wayne Driver says

      Hi Jane, There is other ways to enforce cleaner technologies through incentives rather than taxes. We should be using more grain based fuel (ethanol) which can be derived form crops grown specifically for this prupose rather than from our food crops, solar technologies etc. Australia once led the worl in innovative technologies, we need to get back to being the innovators and leaders. If you would liek to contact me, I would appreciate your input.

      Michael, your as clear as mud, you say Human Rights issues, which one of the many are you concerned with? We have a clear Asylum policy, increasing of pensions alllowing the basic human right of decent living. You are starting to sound like a Labor stooge on here to stir arguments as Labor have no real candidate in Tangney.

  4. Hi Wayne,

    My “muddy” human rights issue was ranked number 4 by 12% of the voting public today, above climate change and asylum seekers, and way above pensions. It garners between 60-70 percent of community support in a variety of polls, taking into account age, faith, ideology and location. Look it up. Clue: it’s on the NoFibs election drop down menu on the home page.

    Far from being any kind of stooge, I’m a citizen journo who writes impartially about all the candidates in my electorate. Without us, there would be no seat profile election project for you to participate in. I am interacting here as part of my agreement with NoFibs to read the work of my fellow citizen journos.

    A “stooge” would probably not have his photo and links to his personal online presence so readily to hand for you to click on.

    Stirring arguments? Yeah, I admit it, I am guilty of provoking thought on some issues, but I think that’s part of what this website does.

    Stirring on behalf of a political party? Never. If you’d care to look me up in the ALP membership, you won’t find me.

    • Wayne Driver says

      Michael, obviously it is Marriage Equality, we are allowed a conscience vote on this, which every party should allow. I personally think anyone has the right to be married, but, if elected, I represent a collective of electors and I would go with the what the greater community response i get when I meet people during the campaign. Each suburb gives me different response for or against. At this stage I am not seeing to much trending to one view point.

      Remember Kevin Rudd was a proponent against Marriage Equality for a long time and actually agreed when John Howard over rode the states that went down that path. His stance changed when he wanted to return to PM as he knows the majority of the party support it, a leopord doesn’t change its spots. Kevin when recently approached about the subject, actually dodged and weaved on future legislation and would not committ to actually bringing the legislation before parliament.

      If Labor believed in democracy, it would put the issue to parliament as a conscience vote.

      • Well done Wayne, now that we’ve sorted out the issue, let’s get to the guts of representation on it.

        In the last few years, the Parliament has at different times and in different ways required ministers to canvas the opinions of their electorates on this issue.

        Many did what you have said you are doing. A few carried out formal polling.

        Guess what? The polling usually resulted in greater support than the “people come up to me and say” style poll so popular with professional politicians, which I think has become a euphemism for “about 4 and a half people, a dog and a store mannequin came up to me and said (insert issue)”.

        If you’re not seeing “too much trending to one view point”, then chances are, about half of those people, dogs and store mannequins support marriage equality. Is that not enough for you to think about offering potential leadership to all your electorate on this issue?

        I know full well Kevin Rudd’s history on marriage equality. It is similar to many first world leaders of faith, as is his evolution into a position of support – often through simple contact with LGBTQI members of staff, and coming to terms with the impact that inequality has on people and families.

        You need to check your facts though – it IS the ALP which allows its ministers a conscience vote on marriage equality. It’s the LNP who don’t. Kevin Rudd cannot prevent any minister bringing legislation before parliament, on any issue. Bills on marriage equality are hitting the house at every sitting and that is unlikely to change. Wherever they have passed in other nations, it has always been under a leader who supports it.

        It’s great that you are a supporter of marriage equality. I personally think many in your electorate will be very pleased to know that, regardless of the potential for legislation to get passed in the 44th Parliament.

        Don’t be shy, speak up about it a bit more, that is what will set you apart from most “professional” politicians you profess to differ from, and will rank your party as truly forward thinking.

      • Wayne Driver says

        Michael, I find the comment “If you’re not seeing “too much trending to one view point”, then chances are, about half of those people, dogs and store mannequins support marriage equality” offensive to the people of my electorate.

        The party has a conscience vote as has publicly been stated in media releases ignored by the media. Rahther than trying to belittle my electorate members as you did above, have a go at main stream media for not wanting to allow us the same level of coverage.

        I am glad you have strong feelings about marriage equality, but governments need to be considerd by more than one issue alone. If like you have stated, it is about one issue, when legislation like “Bail In” happen, you will not be able to complain as you have been informed that the party you suported were bringing it in. It would be hypocritical to complain as like you have said “it is about one basic human right”

        I will represent the electorate, that is my priority and to provide the electorate with the best representation possible on multiple issues, not just one issue.

        Just for your personal record, I have many friends who are from the LGBTQI community. Many are also in my electorate and they have agreed, the parties position of a consience vote is the way to go.

        May I suggest, as concerned citizen journalist, you provide me your email, I will send you the party media releases and you can do what the mainstream media do not?

      • Nice try Wayne, but I am sure the good people of Tangney can see my point without you taking the sensitive approach. You might think calling someone a stooge isn’t offensive, but I let that pass because I thought we were a few levels up in this debate?

        So, to answer your new points:

        (1) Voters can decide our leader on one issue, or 1,000, if we decide to. That’s democracy too. Naughty democracy, it’s just got so many options!

        (2) If you ever catch me complaining about who got voted in, feel free to call me on it.

        (3) “I have many friends who are (insert type of person)” is just another technique the “professional politicians” you profess to differ from use to portray representation on range of issues. I don’t doubt that you have same sex attracted friends, but I question whether they feel represented by the PUP on Marriage Equality.

        (4) At least your electorate can now see you personally support Marriage Equality (in addition to other issues covered in your interview), and that it would form part of your conscience if you were ever in a position to vote on an issue affecting the lives of so many Australians and our families … so I guess that’s mission accomplished for me.

        (5) I’ve already availed myself of the PUP media releases, thanks anyway. I commend the PUP on its commitment to conscience voting on issues such as Marriage Equality, but I don’t believe that offers much leadership. There are only 2 party leaders who are providing good leadership and representation on this human rights issue.

  5. Wayne Driver says

    Hi Michael,

    Even though you claim this is the technique of a proffessional politician, I am far and away removed form that. This is what sets me apart form the current sitting member and always will.

    I can give you the names and numbers of my friends in the LGBTQI community, confidentially, but not openly due to some who discrimanate against my friends. My friends have agreed to talk to you, I can arrange a face to face meeting if you like.

    My friends have said the PUP view is the only true way as it will show peoples will not a party will and the fact that we have never been directed by the party one way or the other shows that PUP is truly for the people.

    The other 2 parties are going to allow a conscience vote now as well, so how does this deny PUP good leadership and representation yet you claim it makes the two majors good leadership and representation on this one single issue?

    How long will Kevin Rudd or Tony Abbott be in the top job before one is knifed by Bill Shorten or Wayne Swan or even Peter Beatty, (remember it took a year before Rudd was knifed last time) and how long before Turnbull or Hockey knife Abbott.

    If marriage equality was truly important to Mr Rudd as you believe, he had the chance to recall Parliament and put it to the vote, something he refused to do when pressed by the opposition.

    Our candidates all believe in Clive Palmer and the Party, so we are strongly led and united. Something both of the traditional two are not.

    I am here to represent ALL the people of the electorate regardless of race, gender, religion or even political affiliation and to the best for the electorate, something most other politicians and political aspirants have forgotten or never intended.

    Thank you for your lively debate, it keeps things interesting and enjoyable.

  6. Hi Wayne, I welcome a chance to speak to you about carbon issues. Thanks for replying, I appreciate your courtesy.

    • Wayne Driver says

      Hi Jane, thank you for showing your concern on the carbon issue. One of the things I would do should I be fortunate enough for the electorate to elect me is to hold regular meetings so I can get community feedback, something that seems to be lacking by most politicians until they hit election mode.

      How do people have a say if politicians are hard to get an appointment with or end up with an office staffer who decides if you need to see the local member? It is far easier to for the politician to come to the public and meet with the electorate. Should I get in, you can hold me to that.

  7. Mark Pontague says

    “Bail in” Sucks. We have have been promised tax reform for 30 years. The GST was supposed to do it, but never did. Clive’s ideas have true merit.

    The FBT is killing the hospitality industry. I know some people think is unfair for others to get a tax deduction for business meals etc but it has to be realized the real difference they make.

    The majors, labour and Liberal, well, they truley only care about themselves. All are single minded in their desire to remain a politician at any any cost. They tell us what they think we want to hear with no real truth in there commitment.

    This country will continue with business as usual if a whole new Goverment of novice pollies are elected. Our public service runs the day to day operations of the Country not the pollies so have no worries in that regard.

    I hope ( wild as it may seem) that Clive can be the PM and he and you all can truley reform this Country.

    Good Luck. I will vote for you. The others are just puppets and clowns. They are of no value to me.

    I am just dissapionted that you guys can not get more coverage by the media.

    • Wayne Driver says

      Thankks for your support Mark.

      MP’s get cheap meals in Parliament but don’t get charged FBT, yet a business man trying to close a deal over a bite at a local cafe and maybe able to employ more people gets stung FBT….. seriously it isn’t fair. I come in as a candidate from a community background nto a family political background.

      Clive encourages representing your electorate and not just party lines.

      A large number of sporting and community groups have told me they are sick of hearing “Safe Liberal Seat, no funds for you” from the two majors.

      Perfect examples of being overlooked 10 million dollars allocated by Abbott to the Mandurah Aquatic Centre (Marginal Seat) and both Rudd and Abbott have pledged 10 million dollars to upgrading ovals at Brookvale (Marginal Seat again) in NSW, yet a major sporting complex and community area in Tangney Electorate area of Canning Vale does not rate a mention by either of the major parties nor funding for other sporting and community groups struggling for improved facilities ot keep the community engaged.

      Tangney will it remain a safe Liberal seat? Who knows, but I have recieved alot of phone calls of support form small business people, community and sporting groups and pensioners and veterans who have had enough, maybe change is coming!