The candidates for the seat of Richmond, Dawn Walker (left), Matthew Fraser (top centre), Justine Elliot (bottom centre) and Dr Phil Allen.
The candidates for the seat of Richmond, Dawn Walker (left), Matthew Fraser (top centre), Justine Elliot (bottom centre) and Dr Phil Allen.

2013 Federal Election guide to seat of Richmond

THE federal seat of Richmond covers an area of about 2768 sq km from the New South Wales/Queensland border in the north to Lennox Head and Skennars Head in the south.

The main towns include Bangalow, Brunswick Heads, Byron Bay, Kingscliff, Lennox Head, Mullumbimby, Murwillumbah, Nimbin, Ocean Shores, Pottsville, Suffolk Park and Tweed Heads.

The main industries are tourism, commercial fishing, agriculture including dairy, beef cattle, tropical fruits, sugarcane, coffee and macadamia nuts, sugar processing, timber, light engineering and boat building.

Once a National Party stronghold, Richmond's changing demographic has made it increasingly difficult for the conservatives to win back.

Proof of the area's changing face is reflected in the Greens' primary vote, which has increased from 12% in 2004 to 16% at the next election.

 

  

CLICK here for a larger map of the electorate of Richmond

THE CANDIDATES

Incumbent: Justine Elliot (Labor)

The former police officer first won the seat in 2004 by just 301 votes (two-party-preferred). She held a junior ministry in the first Rudd government, and was a parliamentary secretary from 2010 until March this year.

Latest stories about Justine Elliot

Challengers

Matthew Fraser (Nationals)

The 34-year-old businessman owns two Hungry Jacks franchises, has a pilot's licence and is a karate enthusiast.  He won pre-selection in June last year beating three other candidates, including beaten 2010 candidate Alan Hunter.

Latest stories about Matthew Fraser

Dawn Walker (Greens)

Has worked as a policy adviser for the Department of Small Business, was the former president of Fingal Head Community Association Inc. and currently works as a small business operator.

Latest stories about Dawn Walker

Phil Allen (Palmer United)

Dr Allen is an orthopedic surgeon who has lived on the Tweed for 15 years. He was the chairman of the Medical Staff Council, was involved in the expansion of the Tweed Hospital and was the treasurer of the Northern Rivers Symphony Orchestra.

Latest stories about Phil Allen

2010 RESULT (Two-party-preferred)

Justine Elliot 56.99% (-1.88% swing)

Alan Hunter (NAT) 43.01%

THE VERDICT - LABOR HOLD

The Nationals have high hopes for Mr Fraser. But he will have a fight on his hands to wrest the seat from Ms Elliot, who is eager to make the election a "referendum about coal seam gas".

She said the reason for stepping down from the frontbench in March was to concentrate on the fight against CSG expansion in the area.

Ms Elliot has sought to paint Mr Fraser as pro-CSG, despite his repeated denials.  Ms Elliot is also hopeful of Kevin Rudd's return leading to a boost in her vote. The 45-year-old has been one of Mr Rudd's most loyal supporters.

INTERESTING FACT

Three generations of the Anthony family held the seat for a total of 55 years between 1901 and 2004. Larry Anthony held the seat for 20 years from 1937-57.

He was succeeded by his son Doug, who held the seat from 1957-84. Doug's son Larry then held the seat from 1996-2004 before losing to Ms Elliot.



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