Pauline Hanson is considering running for the seat of Hunter, as she weighs up where to stand as an independent candidate in what she says may be her last tilt at federal parliament.
Ms Hanson confirmed on Tuesday she was considering standing for the seat held by Labor’s Joel Fitzgibbon with a 12 per cent margin, but stressed she had not yet made up her mind on whether to run in NSW or Queensland.
‘‘Yes, it is [ a seat being considered] but I haven’t made a decision as yet. I won’t be making that for at least another month,’’ she said.
The former One Nation leader recently returned to Queensland after residing at Corlette, but said her ties to the region were still strong and her partner owned property in the area.
‘‘I’ve got a lot of support when I lived down there, at Port Stephens, a lot of support and friends in the area. It’s a strong connection in the area for me and I love it, it’s beautiful,’’ she said.
She said the impacts of coal seam gas and a lack of support for farmers were issues of importance, as well as Labor’s mining tax.
Ms Hanson also criticised the condition of roads in tourism areas of the Hunter as ‘‘absolutely ridiculous’’.
‘‘Australians are so frustrated with both sides of politics,’’ she said.
‘‘They want honesty, someone who is going to be there to represent them. That’s why it’s no game to me, it’s so important.’’
‘‘...I feel that this is going to be my last tilt at federal politics and I want to get it right because it’s so important to me.’’
Ms Hanson said she was not considering the neighbouring seat of New England, where Queensland Senator Barnaby Joyce will stand for the Nationals against key independent Tony Windsor.
‘‘Barnaby is a fantastic member of parliament ... he’s raising issues that very few politicians have the guts to get up and say,’’ she said.
Mr Fitzgibbon said he was known for taking a strong stand in the interest of his electorate, which takes in Kandos and Rylstone and part of Bylong Valley, Cessnock, Maitland and the Upper Hunter.
‘‘Anyone and everyone is entitled to contest [the seat of ] Hunter, even people from Queensland,’’ Mr Fitzgibbon said.
Nationals party candidate Michael Johnsen said Ms Hanson had told him at the Kurri Kurri Nostalgia Festival that she was interested in an unspecified Queensland seat.
‘‘The community likes to have a representative who is decisive and has ties to the electorate,’’ he said.
In 2011, Ms Hanson narrowly missed out on a spot in the NSW upper house after topping a group ticket that included eight people from the region.