Labor candidates Paul Hoolihan and Bill Byrne at the Heritage Hotel for the official Labor Party campaign launch.
Labor candidates Paul Hoolihan and Bill Byrne at the Heritage Hotel for the official Labor Party campaign launch. Chris Ison

Three candidates rally troops

IT WAS a day for the Rs as the three State election Labor Party candidates for the Rockhampton region launched their campaigns and rallied the troops.

Retiring Member for Rockhampton Robert Schwarten introduced the trio, and Minister for Agriculture, Food and Regional Economies and Member for Mackay Tim Mulherin, at the launch Saturday afternoon.

He referred to the trio as the three Rs - returning (Mirani candidate Jim Pearce), renewing (sitting Keppel MP Paul Hoolihan) and replacing (Rockhampton candidate Bill Byrne).

Mr Mulherin, who used the launch as an opportunity to pay tribute to Mr Schwarten's achievements as the Rockhampton MP, said Mr Byrne had a hard act to follow.

"I believe Bill has the leadership qualities, coming from the army," he said.

Mr Mulherin also commented on Mr Pearce having sat on the sidelines for the past three years, but not idly.

Mr Pearce, who said he preferred to be out and about in the community than at the campaign office, has been an outspoken advocate for mining communities.

Mr Mulherin said Mr Pearce, who originally wasn't sure if he could make the launch due to a previous appointment, also had an understanding of the issues graziers were facing.

"This election on March 24 will be a watershed election," Mr Mulherin said.

"My final message is don't gamble on Campbell."



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