Pingelly farmer gives politics a ‘second go’

Laura GrubisaCountryman
Nationals WA candidate and Pingelly farmer John Hassell.
Camera IconNationals WA candidate and Pingelly farmer John Hassell. Credit: Shannon Hampton

Pingelly farmer John Hassell will take another tilt at Federal politics, after stepping aside from his position on the CBH board last year.

The National WA candidate will vie for the seat of O’Connor, currently the territory of Liberal MP Rick Wilson, in the Federal election early next year.

Tony Crook was the last Nationals MP to hold the seat of O’Connor in 2010.

Mr Hassell said he hoped he came across as a “man of the people” and a simple country farmer fighting for a better outcome for WA.

“I’m having a second go at this because I really believe that we need to solve the GST problem for all of WA,” he said. “It’s ridiculous that we have a system that is so detrimental to WA.”

Mr Hassell said he was proud to build on the Nationals’ previous commitment in the bush.

“Whether it was Tony Crook’s fight for a fairer GST, Brendon Grylls’ fight for Royalties for Regions or Mia Davies’ fight to reverse cuts to regional education and Schools of the Air — the Nationals have a history of putting West Australians at the front of the queue,” he said.

Mr Hassell first stood for the seat of O’Connor in 2016, installed as the Nationals’ candidate just over two months before the snap double dissolution election called by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

But the Nationals suffered a swing against the party on first preferences, with low-key Labor candidate John Ford sliding ahead of Mr Hassell to finish a distant second.

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