‘Teal’-held North Sydney seat flagged for scrap heap

Kylea Tink speaks

Source: ABC News

The teal-held seat of North Sydney faces the axe ahead of the next federal election under a proposed redraw of electoral boundaries.

The seat, won by ‘teal’ independent Kylea Tink in 2022, is surrounded by the Labor-held seats of Reid and Bennelong, the Liberal-held Bradfield and the independent-held Warringah.

Under the proposal revealed by the Australian Electoral Commission on Friday, it will be absorbed into those seats.

Tink, who unseated progressive Liberal Trent Zimmerman at the last election after his primary vote fell almost 14 per cent, said she was disappointed by the plan.

“As the proud independent representative for the people of North Sydney, I am obviously disappointed by today’s draft boundary announcement … But this has never been about me,” she said.

“My focus remains on the community of North Sydney, the incredible team working with me, and the thousands of volunteers and donors who helped bring North Sydney’s voice back in 2022.

“I will continue to stand up for and fight for the people of North Sydney on the issues that matter most to our community.”

Tink said 2022, when six so-called teal MPs were elected across the country, was a watershed moment in Australian politics.

“The truth of the matter is sadly, while we have had an incredible run in this 47th Parliament, the issues that saw my community send me to North Sydney – those issues being fast action on climate, integrity and transparency in politics, and a fair go for everyone who finds themselves in Australia – are just as pressing today as they were in a 2022 when we saw that election,” she said.

“I need to stay focused on the rest of the term that I have in this seat, and particularly given the moves we have seen in the last week for the federal opposition, with their statements that if elected a Dutton Liberal-Coalition government would walk away from our interim targets for 2030.

“To be clear, our nation has no hope of hitting net zero by 2050 if we do not have interim targets – and the people of North Sydney are incredibly pragmatic and understand that.”

NSW is to lose a seat ahead of next year’s federal election due to slower population growth. There has been previous speculation it was likely to be in Sydney’s north or east.

But the proposed boundary changes unveiled on Friday will also have implications for MPs in surrounding seats.

Election analyst Ben Raue predicted Bennelong, held by first-term Labor MP Jerome Laxlale, would become nominally a Liberal seat. Its two-party-preferred margin moves to 50.1 per cent to the Liberal Party, based on 2022 results.

Former Liberal cabinet minister Paul Fletcher holds Bradfield. He suffered a major swing against him in 2022 to independent candidate Nicolette Boelle, who is likely to stand again.

Also on Friday, the redistribution committee proposed changing the boundaries of 39 NSW electorates.

They include major changes to Hume, which is held by opposition treasury spokesman Angus Taylor. It loses the regional centre of Goulburn and moves further north into Sydney’s southern outskirts.

Under the proposal, Goulburn will move into Eden-Monaro, which is held by Labor’s Kristy McBain. In turn, parts of Eden-Monaro will be shifted into Riverina, the seat of former Nationals leader Michael McCormack.

The proposed redistributions across NSW will affect more than 710,000 voters.

Friday’s announcement follows the proposed abolition of the inner-Melbourne seat of Higgins and the creation of a new electorate in Perth, called Bullwinkel.

Objections to the draft NSW redistribution can be lodged until July 12.

-with AAP

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