Australian liberal candidate reverses position on poker machines

Australian liberal candidate reverses position on poker machines

Mark Parton has reversed his support of poker machines in the casino to join the Liberal election team.

Australia.- The former breakfast radio host and new liberal Mark Parton has reversed his support of poker machines in the casino to join the Liberal election team.

Back in 2008 ACT election when he was an independent candidate, Parton had a policy to support pokies in the casino, saying “they are a must if the casino is to compete on a level playing field and get back to being a profitable venture.” Furthermore, in 2010, he wrote a blog post on the issue on Casino Canberra’s blog. “You think about the Melbourne couple who are holidaying in Canberra. They decide to go to [the] casino for a Friday night. He wants to play the tables, she going to have a go on the pokies. They don’t get it once they get here and for some reason there are not machines,” he wrote.

Asked about his change of heart Parton replied people were not “born as robots with the party mantra” and from time to time would hold a different position to their party. “I think one of the healthiest things about the Liberal Party is that it is such a broad church. I know that there will be some things that we may disagree on. But I’m also a team man,” he said. Parton added that he had already changed his view on poker machines in the casino, “well and truly before I was in the preselection gun for Brindabella.”

“I struggle with the trashing of the community model of poker machines in the ACT,” he said, regarding current rules that allow poker machines only in clubs. “I think we’ve got a unique scenario there which has served the community very well and I don’t want to see them end.”

On Monay, the Liberals’ management committee chose Parton to replace Brendan Smyth on the Liberals’ ticket of candidates contesting the five seats in the Brindabella seat of Tuggeranong. He beat out five contenders for the spot, including federal Senate candidate Jane Hiatt.