Catherine Ng, one of John So’s refugees recently generated headlines in the news by claiming a conspiracy theory of “dummy candidates”.
First we need to make it clear that “dummies” as they call them are legitimate players in the political process. Who is to sit in judgment that person A or group B should not have a right to stand for public office.As long as they do so of their own free will and and not coerced of forced to stand then it is every persons right to stand for public office. The fact that by nominating they have a chance to influence the outcome of an election is the democratic right to do so.in the end it is the voters that have the ultimate say ion who they vote for and for what reasons. It is the voters who decide who they will preference in and in what order. All the candidate can do is make a recommendation.
A review of the names and grouping of the Lord Mayor’s ticket has indicated that Catherine Ng has negotiated the candidacy and support of Robert King Crawford. Robert who is considered by many insiders to be running as a preference feeder for Catherine Ng. His campaign Manager is listed in the VEC nominations as Andrew Miles who is also listed a the manager of Wellington Lee’s ticket. Wellington suffered a major setback in his campaign when Andrew Miles failed have Wellington’s second candidate turn up and lodge his nomination form before the closing deadline. This has forced Wellington to seek refuge and support by attaching himself to Fiona Snedden Council Ticket. Whether this means that Wellington and Andrew Miles have had a fall out is difficult to say. Wellington was supposed to help strengthen Bob Crawford Lord Mayor’s ticket which in turn will be a vehicle to direct additional preferences to Catherine Ng ticket.
This is all conspiracy theory and there is no way in which this can be proven, even if it is true there is noting illegal and wrong with a candidate nominating to support other candidates. after all this is what team grouping is all about Catherine has nominated a team of five candidates for the City Council ticket but in reality she is only likely to elected one candidate, the same goes to all other groups who have nominated more candidates then they can be expected to elect.
In the Lord Mayor stakes Gary Singer is expected to support Catherine Ng and Gary Morgan and Nick Columb have a common natural constituency as does Will Fowles and to a lesser extent Peter McMullin (McMullins ticket crosses the political divide and has representatives form both labor and Liberal Camps). Joseph Toscano (Shifting the burden) is expected to support the Green’s Adman Brandt. it is unclear where Shelly Roberts, a resident based activist group, preferences will land, They are expected to flow on to other minor party/groupings splitting three to four ways.Again it is up to the voters to decide who and in what order they will give their support.
It is all a part of the Spring racing carnival events. Looking at the players at the starting gate does not give much hope and inspiration that Melbourne will become the dynamic and responsible Council that it should be. There is not much talent in the field so the outcome could be any ones guess.