Quick Question For Australian Factional Hacks

A very quick question for all factional hacks: do you believe there is anything either ethically or legally wrong about giving someone a job in return to them not contesting in a preselection?

I’m curious to gauge general opinion – consider this like a mini-poll – so if you could just state your view (even if it’s one word), it would be appreciated.



12 Responses to “Quick Question For Australian Factional Hacks”

  1. perrys Says:

    it is fine. it is just another option for that person to conisder, and they should be free to consider their options.

    If they are offered a job, and accept I would doubt they would be able to continue in that position anyway. So they would have no choice but to either participate in the preselection or take up the offer of the job.

  2. Pedros Says:

    Nope. There is nothing that compels people to run in pre-selection.

    Is the best candidate for a seat the person who is best merited to be in parliament, or the person who will win the seat?

    The reality is if parties do not win seats, then they don’t govern. Sometimes you need to have a few line-towing backbenchers, rather than a whole team of superstar future leaders.

  3. jobbo, rhymes with yobbo. Says:

    Is it coincidence that rudd got in, considering his wife is in the job-finding business…???

  4. MC Says:

    If the person was considering running for preselection, chances are they are interested enough in politics to be staffer (not that there’s a benchmark, anyway). So they’re likely to be qualified enough to hold the job; I can’t see there being any “legal” problems.

    Whether or not such tactics are “ethical”, I doubt it. It’s not the dodgiest thing that many a parliamentarian would have done, but I still doubt that would please the man in the street.

    In any case, once can never prove a motive for the hire. The pollie will say they hired a talented person on merit, and their new staffer is going to keep their trap shut – if they know what’s good for them.

    It’s only dodgy if it backfires and the person does not accept the job. Then they are free to point out how two apparently mutually exclusive events have magically intersected — a new job offer and a polite request to drop out of the race.

  5. Peter Says:

    Duh, of course there is a massive ethical problem with that. You are using taxpayers money (staffer’s pay) to bribe them to stay out of the race. Such an offer should not be made, and should not be accepted, by a honourable person.

  6. jobbo, rhymes with yobbo. Says:

    “It’s only dodgy if it backfires”

    Ah, the 11th commandment. Sport lives by it…why shouldn’t pollies? 😀

  7. CK Says:

    Yes it is problematic. People should be encouraged to preselect and positions should be filled by the most capable person. On both sised of the equation there is a problem.

  8. MFS Says:

    CK… A person who can be ‘bought’ so cheaply is never the best person for public office.

  9. maaate Says:

    If someone is willing to give up a preselection tilt for another job, they clearly aren’t that committed to the idea of being the local MP/Senator and were really only about self interest. Someone like that shouldn’t be entering public life anyway, so the way I see it, it is just another test of someone’s commitment, like any other question you would pose to a candidate at preselection.

    That being the case, there is nothing wrong with it – so long as the person offering the job as the right to do so – i.e., it’s not taxpayer funded or, I would argue, in a public company (duty to shareholders etc would suggest that there is a duty to ensure the best possible candidates are employed for any given position).

  10. Ray Says:

    Legally, no problems. Ethically, yeah there is a slight issue there, but as long as everyone sticks to the deal then there shouldn’t be any laundry aired in public, so it should be perceived to be clean to the general public.

    On the other hand if it is obvious that that is what happened or it is reported on, then everyone involved will be tarnished by it.

  11. anon Says:

    You should already have the numbers, so there is no need to offer any jobs.

  12. Shark1975 Says:

    Don’t do it.

    It encourages a bunch of people to enter the race on the chance of a favour.

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