From big Clive to Speedo-wearing Tony, dollies prove a winner
IF YOU'VE ever wanted to get your hands on some of our political leaders, here's your chance.
Past and present members of parliament have been depicted in plush toy form as prizes in a vending machine skill tester game at Riverlink Shopping Centre.
All the most iconic, modern day political figures are there - from Prime Minister Tony Abbott, resplendent in Speedos to a scowling Bob Katter in his trademark Akubra.
Win and Grin Amusements worker Paul Rex, whose Gold Coast company manufactures the vending machines, said the plush pollies remained a popular item, even months after the election.
"The most sought-after politicians are Kevin Rudd, Bob Katter and Clive Palmer," he said.
"The crane machine has a bit of trouble picking up the Palmer one though because his plush toy alter-ego's head is too big."
Mr Rex said the toys were commissioned by one of his customers, Queensland Coin Operated Amusements owner Wally Trigger.
"Wally thought it was a fun idea and utilised some of his contacts in China to create the public servant playthings."
Mr Rex said some of the toys had been purchased on eBay by electoral officials and suggested they might have been used as voodoo dolls or dartboards.
Blair MP Shayne Neumann threw a couple of dollars into the vending machine, to try to obtain a Tony Abbott doll.
"If Abbott gets his claws into people's household incomes, I wouldn't mind being able to get my claws into him, figuratively," he said.
Mr Neumann said he thought it would be funny to have a plush toy made in his likeness.
"I've seen myself in caricature form before - it's quite amusing.
"In politics you have to be able to laugh at yourself."
Some of the "pollie dollies" have also been supplied to a business in Adelaide where they are sold as dog chew toys.
Other politicians available are former treasurer Wayne Swan and two versions of former PM Julia Gillard.