The Beagle Editor,
Why is it so difficult for Mr Constance to admit a failure, apologise for it, learn from it and move on?
Why ‘spit the dummy’ trying to cover your butt? Why behave as a pouting petulant child? And why fire a parting shot at a constituent who dared frame a question round said failure?
It was after watching the ‘Meet the Candidates’ forum, hosted by the Tuross Head Progress Association on 22nd May, Time stamp 1:38:55) that prompted me to write this letter.
I wish to support the president of the Tuross Head Progress Association, Cathy Milliken, who dared to ask candidates:
“In regard to accessibility of the local member:
If successful at this federal election you will be our representatives in federal parliament and you are the person we come to when we need help.
Noting, that for the last 5 years our previous state member replied to no emails or letters or returned phone calls; as our local member, what will you do to ensure the citizens of Gilmore can contact you, receive a response or action to issues they wish to bring to your office?”
Mr Constance’s response:
“Given that the question was directed at me (no, it was directed at all candidates), I’ll first of all apologise to you if that's how you feel.
I’ve worked tirelessly for the last 20 years ................. I don’t want to come here tonight and take that type of question, quite frankly. I think ultimately our community is wonderful and the people in it are wonderful and I love it and I’ve seen the best and worst in it......... So I’m sorry if the Progress Association feels that way and for whatever reason I’m happy to discuss why, personally.”
Firstly, Ms Milliken was NOT stating how she ‘felt.’ She was stating a ‘fact’. In his role as our state member for Bega, Mr Constance did not respond to correspondence.
I can attest to this fact as I gave up trying to contact Mr Constance several years go, because it was simply a waste of time.
It wasn't until a landslide closed Araluen Road, cutting off access to Moruya for my community, that I decided to try again. With the road being closed for 5 months and with ESC coming up with no solutions, I wrote, pleading for help to resolve and expedite a solution to the closure, detailing the enormous impacts the closure was having on the lives, livelihoods and emotional well being of residents.
Not only did I receive no response, but my correspondence was not even acknowledged. I sent my plea again 4 weeks later, still with no response or acknowledgement.
Quite Frankly, Mr Constance, I didn’t spend considerable time and effort to write my plea for help on behalf of my community, only to be totally ignored by you.
As Ms Milliken said, “if successful, you will be our representatives in federal parliament and you are the person we come to when we need help.” Well, you ignored us when we we asked for help as our state member, so you can be assured that the chances of us voting for you as our federal member are ‘diddly squat’.
Secondly, there is nothing to discuss, “personally,’” or otherwise, with the Tuross Head Progress Association. You failed to respond to their correspondence – end of story.
I also note, that at the Tuross Head forum, Mr Constance prefaced many of his responses by referring to the Black Summer Bushfires.
He professes to understand the post bushfire needs of his electorate, yet throws millions of bushfire recovery dollars at walking tracks and mountain bike trails while his constituents still struggle to recover.
With Mr Constance, we have a candidate:
* who chooses to remain inaccessible to constituents
* who is willing to squander bushfire/taxpayer funds on unnecessary projects and
* who has no qualms about bending the facts to the public, as evidenced in the $100,000 ferry naming campaign in 2016/17, when Mr Constance repeatedly stated that “Ferry McFerryface” was the most popular choice. This was not correct, exposed by a Freedom of Information request. Mr Constance had actually chosen the name himself.
So why has Mr Constance focused his campaign to the north of the Gilmore electorate?
Because those in the south have had a gutful of the failures, absence, lame excuses, bending of the truth and the habit of attacking anyone who dares question or identify obvious failures.
It’s time for Pouty McPoutface to pick up his marbles and go.
Ditto for for the Big Boss, Smirky McSmirkface, who hasn't dared to return to our southern shores.
Deua River Valley