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Former ABC journalist Zoe Daniel to run as an independent against Liberal MP Tim Wilson in Victoria

The Guardian logo The Guardian 25/11/2021 Nino Bucci

The former ABC reporter Zoe Daniel has announced she will run as an independent in the upcoming federal election in the Melbourne electorate of Goldstein, which is currently held by Liberal MP Tim Wilson.

Daniel announced in a series of tweets on Thursday that she would be contesting the seat in the city’s south-east, citing integrity in politics and climate change among her core concerns.

Her candidacy has been backed by Voices of Goldstein, one of a number of campaigns funding independent candidates in Coalition-held seats under the “Voice Of” movement.

“I am honoured to have been asked to represent the Goldstein community,” Daniel tweeted on Thursday.

“Thankyou @GoldsteinVoices for your trust. If not us, who? If not now? When?”

Daniel said she would officially launch her campaign on Saturday morning in Sandringham, and linked to an article unveiling her candidacy that was published by the Nine Network.

In the article, Daniel says she is a resident of Hampton, which is within the electorate, and voted for Wilson in the 2016 election. Wilson holds the seat on a margin of just under 8%.

She also described herself as a swinging voter who had never been a member of a political party.

Daniel, who was a foreign correspondent during a career of three decades with the broadcaster, said in the article she would draw inspiration from independents Cathy McGowan and Zali Steggall and run on a climate and integrity platform.

“I look at my kids and the friends they bring home and I think what’s life going to look like for you guys if none of us actually do anything?” she said in the article.

“If not us, then who? And if not now, when?

“The people of Goldstein know that that’s happening too, and they really want more substantive policy on this,” she said. “It remains a moral issue, but it’s also now an economic issue if we want to continue the prosperity that we’ve had in Australia.”

Daniel also tweeted a campaign video that leaned heavily on her career at the public broadcaster and featured her walking on the beach with her dog and two teenage children.

Daniel asks in the video whether Goldstein voters valued honesty and integrity in politics, a strategic climate policy, transparent economic management, and safety and equality for women.

“Do we have any of these right now? No. We deserve better, and we can no longer wait,” Daniel says.

“I’ve been that reporter on your TV delivering bad news, and it’s not fake.

“But the good news is that we the people of Goldstein can do something about it.”

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