Labor’s Steve Georganas has nominated for preselection for his old federal seat of Hindmarsh in Adelaide’s western suburbs – but he faces a challenge.
At midday today, Labor closed nominations for the federal seats of Hindmarsh, Adelaide, Boothby, Hindmarsh, Kingston, Makin, Port Adelaide, and Wakefield.
Sitting members Kate Ellis (Adelaide), Amanda Rishworth (Kingston), Mark Butler (Port Adelaide), Tony Zappia (Makin) and Nick Champion (Wakefield) were unopposed.
Georganas wants to reclaim the seat he lost in 2013 by a slender margin of 1.89 per cent, after he suffered an eight per cent swing to Liberal Matt Williams.
He’s facing a challenge from long-term Labor member Delia Brennan – but it’s a battle he’s likely to win.
In Liberal-held Boothby, teacher Mark Ward is the only nomination. Ward made his first run at politics in the by-election for the state seat of Davenport earlier this year. He was defeated, but Labor was pleased with his campaign.
Labor will keep nominations open for Sturt – held by the Liberals’ Christopher Pyne – as it seeks to find the right candidate.
“I want to continue where I left off to ensure that the electorate has good representation,” Georganas told InDaily today.
“I was very proud to represent Hindmarsh, and I love that community, it’s part of who I am and where I’ve lived all my life, and I want to continue working for that community.
“The seat of Hindmarsh deserves much better than it’s currently got in terms of government and local member.”
“You look at the (future submarines contract) issue. You look at the airport curfew: it was promised there would be no changes before the election, and we now have flights coming in before curfew times.”
Georganas nominated the replacement of the King Street Bridge at Glenelg North and the construction of new Surf Life Saving SA headquarters at Glenelg as key achievements during his tenure in federal parliament between 2004 and 2013.
He said he was proud of his record, but that “there were many factors in the last election – certainly, the leadership team of the Australian Labor Party had many internal issues at the time”.
Labor Party sources have previously told InDaily that Georganas “never stopped campaigning” for reelection since his 2013 loss.
Georganas said he “wouldn’t call it campaigning,” but instead, it was “part of my duty as a community member”.
The South Australian branch of the Labor Party opened nominations for eight federal seats including Hindmarsh earlier this month, in preparation for an election.
Labor is also eyeing Education Minister Christopher Pyne’s ostensibly safe eastern suburbs seat of Sturt.
“Minister Pyne is in a position where he has released some unpalatable policies on the public,” said Georganas.
“His seat is certainly one that’s being looked at by the Australian Labor Party.”
Pyne enjoyed a substantial swing during the 2013 election in Sturt, collecting more than 60 per cent of the two-party preferred vote.
However, the political environment has changed greatly since then, with the Labor party looking to move beyond Rudd-Gillard battles, and the Coalition Government unpopular with South Australian voters.
– additional reporting by David Washington
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