OPINION: Political expert on 'pork-barreling' claims

GRIFFITH University's senior Lecturer and political expert Dr Paul Williams explains his view on the announcement Matt Burnett  has rushed to Brisbane in the hopes of being given written confirmation dividends will be returned to the council.   

The timing of the meeting with the government, days before the election in which Matt Burnett is a mayoral candidate, led his rivals to label the events as orchestrated and a "political stunt".   

>>Burnett's announcement a "political stunt": mayoral rivals 

>>Mayor fires back at deputy

The following was written by Dr Paul Williams, Senior Lecturer Griffith University;  

It's understandable why the Deputy Mayor's opponents, and any number of voters, would be cynical at the timing of any agreement to return revenue to the council. 

By Dr Paul Williams Senior Lecturer School of Humanities, Languages and Social Science Griffith University, Nathan campus
By Dr Paul Williams Senior Lecturer School of Humanities, Languages and Social Science Griffith University, Nathan campus

The timing does appear overtly political.   

However, it does appear accusations of pork-barreling are a step too far, and many voters will see this merely as an example of a well-connected candidate drawing upon those connections to deliver to his local community.   

In political science, we call this "connectional politics", and in the past it's been common for the local-state interface of Queensland politics to operate this way.   

Politics is about finding solutions to constituents' problems, resolving conflict and delivering for communities - all within the law.   

And political candidacies are about demonstrating a certain aptitude to voters that they can get the job done.        



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