Labor reclaim Miranda seat


Labor’s Barry Collier has reclaimed his old NSW seat of Miranda in a stunning by-election result the opposition says sends a message to the O’Farrell government.

Mr Collier took back the seat he relinquished in 2011 in a poll forced by the resignation of former Liberal sports minister Graham Annesley.

The O’Farrell government had feared Mr Annesley’s decision to quit mid-term to become chief executive of the Gold Coast Titans NRL club would count heavily against the Liberal candidate, solicitor Brett Thomas.

Mr Collier said local issues were key to his win, “I’m really feeling quite humbled to be returned by the people … to represent them again,” he said.

“They’ve been taken for granted and ignored on the local issues. It was the local issues, the lack of representation and the lack of strong representation in parliament by Mr Annesley.”

Premier O’Farrell congratulated Barry on his victory and said, “The result principally reflects voters’ understandable disappointment and anger at the unexpected, mid term resignation of the former Liberal MP and the local community’s concerns about allegations involving Liberal members of Sutherland Shire Council.”

NSW Opposition Leader John Robertson says the swing of about 27 per cent against the Liberals in the southern Sydney seat – believed to be the largest ever recorded at a NSW by-election – is a warning to the Liberal government, “The things that are really coming through are people’s concerns about the health cuts and in particular Sutherland hospital,” he said.

“You’ve got issues around over-development with a Liberal council and question marks over that Liberal council.”

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