Member for Nanango and opposition leader Deb Frecklington. Picture: Dominic Elsome
Member for Nanango and opposition leader Deb Frecklington. Picture: Dominic Elsome

Deb’s fight to become first rural Premier in 30 years

WHEN voters head to the polls on October 31, country-raised Deb Frecklington will be facing a political battle on two fronts.

On top of campaigning to hold her seat of Nanango for a fourth term, Ms Frecklington is fighting to restore the LNP to government and become the first Premier from outside the state's South East corner since 1989.

It's an achievement she believes is well within her grasp and one that is long overdue.

"I'm really excited for it," Ms Frecklington said.

"The time is ripe for regional Queensland to have excellent representation from the top," Ms Frecklington said.

"I am unashamedly proud of the fact that I grew up in regional Queensland, I've raised my family in regional Queensland, and it's about time that regional Queensland got their say.

"I believe that no matter where you live, you should be able to be represented by your government."

Her fight for the premiership of Queensland remains tight, with a Newspoll released on July 30 shows the LNP leading Labor 51-49 on two party preferred.

However, her fight to keep her own seat is likely to be foregone conclusion.

Despite two challengers in the form of Labor's Mark Stapleton and One Nation's Tony Scrimshaw, the opposition leader holds the seat on a margin of 13 per cent, meaning it's unlikely she will be unseated.

When asked about the potential challenges of being both the Premier and still working as the MP for Nanango, Ms Frecklington said she would "cross that bridge if we come to it".

But she outlined her wishlist for her own electorate she would be taking to her cabinet should she be elected, including economic development including turning the region into a "serious contender" in the domestic tourism market.

Water security projects would also be top of the agenda, and Ms Frecklington said the region would only benefit if she were to become Premier.

"How fortunate we would be as a region to have the decision makers having to think about the Nanango electorate first and foremost," she said.

When questioned whether she believed she had succeeded at positioning herself as an alternative premier rather than simply an opposition leader she initially declined to comment, saying it "was for commentators to talk about".

But when pressed she said she believe Queensland had an appetite for change.

"My opinion is that Queensland is looking for an alternative with an economic plan," she said.

"I'm working hard, each and every day, to prove to the people of Queensland that the LNP can be the alternate government."

South Burnett

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