Clive Palmer’s United Australia Party has started to advertise for candidates. PICTURE: STEWART MCLEAN
Clive Palmer’s United Australia Party has started to advertise for candidates. PICTURE: STEWART MCLEAN

Electorate snubs only adds to Palmer mystery

Controversial businessman Clive Palmer has put out the call for candidates in the upcoming state election, but his party has failed to advertise two key North Queensland seats.

Full-page ads have appeared in the Courier Mail, with Clive Palmer's United Australia Party searching for talent across the state.

While the party has advertised for the electorates of Burdekin, Mundingburra, Thuringowa, Traeger, Hill and Whitsunday in the North Queensland region, Townsville and Herbert electorates are not mentioned.

However, the two seats do appear in the seat preference selection on the party's sign-up form. There is speculation the party may already have candidates in mind for Townsville and Hinchinbrook.

Candidates with links to Mr Palmer ran in the March Townsville City Council election, including his nephew Martin Brewster.

Mr Brewster said he was considering another tilt at the state election but no firm decision had been made.

Martin Brewster. PICTURE: MATT TAYLOR.
Martin Brewster. PICTURE: MATT TAYLOR.

He indicated the electorate of Mundingburra, which he has previously run for, would be his preference, but made no commitment.

Greg Dowling, who ran as an independent candidate in the mayoral race, received more than $500,000 in election donations from Clive Palmer's Mineralogy Pty Ltd.

But Clive Palmer's United Australia Party has yet to decide if it will contest the election, according to The Australian.

On the party's website, prospective candidates are asked to upload a high resolution photograph of themselves, evidence they are have resigned from another political party if it applies and, if the candidate is a dual citizen, evidence they have cancelled their foreign citizenship status.

Greg Dowling. Picture: Shae Beplate.
Greg Dowling. Picture: Shae Beplate.

Mr Palmer has previously spent significant money on state, federal and local government elections, but will be restricted this time due to new legislation introduced by the State Government.

Last month, the state government introduced a spending cap, with political parties able to spend just $92,000 on each seat. In the 2019 federal election, the mining magnate dropped $60m on advertising but failed to win a single seat.

Mr Palmer was unavailable for comment.

Originally published as Electorate snubs only adds to Palmer mystery


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