First published 2 November, 2007
Hi. As you know, as well as helping Kerrie Tucker try to end Howard's Senate control on election day, I've also been helping another Green friend, Webdiarist Susie Russell, in her ginger campaign against Deputy PM Mark Vaile in his safe seat of Lyne. (Our official T-Shirt is GIVE A SHIT, VOTE GREEN.) Susie emailed me amazing news today which I thought you might like to hear. Yes folks, Vaile has agreed, under questioning from a talk back listener and citizen extraordinaire, to take a lie detector test on AWB!
Now that Vaile's agreed, how about asking Howard and Downer the same question when you hear them on radio where you live.
Here's the press release from Lyne's Labor candidate James Langley:
Australian Wheat Board Shock: Vaile Agrees to Lie Detector Test
The campaign in Lyne took an unusual twist at 2.45pm on Thursday afternoon. Taree Radio station 2RE held a live to air debate between the Deputy Prime Minister and his challenger, ALP candidate James Langley. Mr Vaile failed to show.
However Mr Vaile did phone through to allow the debate to continue. One unexpected showing though was a constituent Peter Warner, farmer from Nabiac.
At the end of the debate 2RE allowed Mr Warner a chance to address the Deputy Prime minister.
Mr Warner first asked the leader of the Nationals if he agreed that treason is the worst crime a citizen can commit against their country. Mr Vaile agreed.
Mr Warner then informed the Prime Minister that he had a cheque for $5000 that he would give to the charity Legacy if Mr Vaile would submit to a lie detector test to answer questions regarding the Australian Wheat Board scandal.
Deputy Prime Minister Mark Vaile then agreed to take a lie detector test to answer questions about the AWB scandal. Mr Vaile was the Trade Minister at the time of the ‘wheat for weapons’ corruption scandal. In his evidence to the Cole inquiry which looked into the scandal, Mr Vaile replied that he could not recall 17 times. The Cole Inquiry was muzzled by the Howard government, not being able to look into the conduct of Ministers overseeing the AWB
Mr Langley said “ These amazing events overshadowed my win in the debate, but it is probably going to be far more interesting to watch this unfold. I congratulate Mr Warner on his commitment to the pursuit of truth and justice.”
For Webdiary's extensive coverage of the AWB scandal, see here.
And there's more. It's a terrible thing, being in a safe National Party seat. Vaile supported diverting the seat's Manning River over the range to Tamworth, so the NSW Nats could have a shot at winning back that seat, now with an independent. (Smart folks, Tamworthians). And now he won't rule out a nuclear reactor where his constituents live:
Federal National Party leader Mark Vaile says he would
want to see the location and technology before deciding whether to
support any future proposal for a nuclear power plant in his electorate.
The Coalition has promised to conduct binding plebiscites in any community where a nuclear facility is proposed.
But a National Party candidate in New South Wales and a sitting
Liberal MP have already voiced their opposition to a nuclear plant in
Mr Vaile is today in his own seat of Lyne on the NSW north coast and
says he has had no clear indication from his voters about how they
"My gut feeling is that I suspect that the competition would be too
great both in terms of support and in terms of the economic viability
from other areas to see something seriously considered along the coast
here," he said.