Jim Murrell and Jason Scanlan at Noosa's Sunrise Beach pre-polling station.
Jim Murrell and Jason Scanlan at Noosa's Sunrise Beach pre-polling station. Alan Lander

Diggers united despite colours

ONE wore red, the other blue.

They may be on different sides of the political divide, but the ALP's Wide Bay candidate Jason Scanlan and LNP volunteer Jim Murrell have more in common than mere politics.

Jason fought in Afghanistan, while Jim survived Vietnam, despite a couple of wounds.

The pair were on the pre-polling hustings at Sunrise Beach on Tuesday, handing out how-to-votes, along with Greens volunteer Peter Lawrence - with no other minor party or independent campaigners to be seen.

But with a three-week pre-poll, albeit only two weeks in the Noosa area, how are the parties coping?

"It's starting to stretch the resources - for all sides,” Jason said.

"(But) people handing out how-to-votes are volunteers; they're not policy experts, so please don't harass them. Give them a fair go; if you want to take pamphlet, take one, but if not leave them alone.”

Jim said there had been two LNP volunteers on each day of the pre-poll, and this was his first.

"I don't know why people get so agitated [about elections]; it only happens every three years,” he said.

"Live and let live, I say. They can jump off the Sydney Harbour Bridge if they want as long as they don't hang on to my hand when they're going.”

Jim said while he and Jason were on "different sides of the line”, they were united in service to country.

"We've got more in common having gone through a war, than political parties,” he said.

Greens volunteer Peter Lawrence said his party was in good shape for pre-polling because "we've got so many young volunteers”.

He said pre-poll voters were "part of the tribes and know what they're doing, so what difference we make is arguable”.

"Maybe up to 50 per cent don't take any [how-to-votes]. Some say they know what's in their mind while others give no feedback.”

Divisional Returning Officer for Wide Bay, Lisa Bradford, said on Tuesday Sunrise Beach pre-polling station had been recording a smaller number of pre-poll votes to that point.

"The Sunrise Beach station has been going against the trend across the state,” Ms Bradford said, but the number was expected to pick up in the final week.

"It's down on what we anticipated. On Monday we took 1255 votes, while last week they were averaging late 700s to early 800s.”

Ms Bradford said interstate voters would be able to vote at Sunshine Beach State School on Saturday if they needed to, while intrastate voters attending the Noosa Food and Wine could vote at any station.


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