Thanks to the incredible ground efforts in Tasmania and South Australia, we have seen the election of Majority Liberal Governments in Tasmania and South Australia over the last fortnight.
There is no doubt. But for the incredible dedication of Young Liberals on the ground, the results in Tasmania and South Australia would not have been possible.
Last July when my predecessor, Aiden Depiazzi, and I joined with the Prime Minister to launch the Movement’s Victory2020 Strategy, we never imagined that it would start to bear fruit so quickly. Just 8 months ago, we as a party were written off in both states in most major polls and newspaper columns. We successfully made the case that we as a Movement are the Party’s ground army and that no one knows how to campaign better than our people and instead of living in fear of the Labor/Green/Union/GetUp cabal, we should take them on head on with a smarter and more effective ground game. Straight away, we started investing our membership, growing our membership and actively seeking to gain learnings from around the world and in Australia to huge success.
At every level on both campaigns, senior current and former Young Liberals were leading the charge as candidates, in roles at Campaign Headquarters, on local campaigns and in getting material out the door. To this end, it is very pleasing that a number Young Liberals in SA have been elected – including Stephan Knoll, Sam Duluk, Dan Cregan and Fraser Ellis.
In Tasmania and South Australia, we ran the largest ever EDO programmes with a renewed development focus and we actively used technology to have Young Liberals from interstate campaigning across state lines and in both Tasmania and South Australia, literally hundreds of Young Liberals volunteered whatever free time they had to help make a critical difference in marginal seats.
This united and holistic approach where we play to our own strengths and ensure trust and respect for our Movement has been instrumental in the successes in Bennelong, Tasmania and South Australia. While there is much to celebrate, we must take the important learnings from these successful campaigns and seek to roll them out Australia-wide and ensure appropriate scaleability to ensure we can win the next Federal Election as well as forthcoming State Elections in Victoria and New South Wales.
But for now, congratulations to the hundreds of Young Liberals in Tasmania and South Australia, as well as all those around Australia who helped out. As a result we have two Majority Liberal Governments that can deliver good public policy in line with our values and hopefully, that will implement key Young Liberal policy priorities.
As well as thanking our generous financial supporters who make all the work we do possible, I want to specifically thank Tasmanian President Bec Dunham, South Australian President Jocelyn Sutcliffe and Federal Campaigns Director Liam Staltari for their incredible work on these campaigns.
Josh Manuatu is the Federal President of the Young Liberals