Above: John Melbourne and Georgia Michell at the pre-poll booth in Maitland Street.
More than three million Australians have already cast their vote at an early voting centre for the 2019 Federal election.
The pre-poll booth in Maitland Street, Narrabri opened on Monday and has been popular with more than 600 people voting at the time of going to print.
The Australian Electoral Commission has warned that the record number of early votes could delay counting and make it more difficult to declare whether Scott Morrison or Bill Shorten is the next Prime Minister, on election night.
John Melbourne has been at the booth, handing out ‘how-to-vote cards’ for the National Party.
“I expect a good result for Mark Coulton. He’s a shoe-in. I could be wrong but I don’t think so,” he said.
“It’s the Senate we’re concerned about.”
There’s been some tension within Coalition ranks about the joint Senate ticket, NSW Nationals candidate for the Senate Perin Davey is in the difficult third spot on the Coalition ticket behind two liberals.
If Ms Davey isn’t successful, it will be the first time in about 100 years that the Nationals haven’t had a NSW representative in the Senate.
Also causing friction are reports of an unauthorised campaign being run by Liberal Senator Jim Molan calling for people to vote for him below the line after Liberal preselectors put him at the unwinnable fourth spot.
The Nationals Mark Coulton was first elected to the House of Representatives for the seat of Parkes in 2007 and is the frontrunner to win the seat of Parkes again.
It’s considered a safe National Party seat.
The Greens candidate for Parkes David Paull was forced to resign earlier this week after The Australian newspaper reported that ‘he claimed on social media that Martin Bryant didn’t commit the 1996 Port Arthur massacre’.
Mr Paull said that he is now standing as an independent candidate.
Other candidates running include Liberal Democrats candidate Daniel Jones, Labor candidate Jack Ayoub, Independent Will Landers and United Australian Party candidate Petrus Van Steen.
Narrabri woman Mary Whitehouse has been campaigning for Labor candidate Jack Ayoub and has been walking the streets wearing his campaign signs, dressing up as a ‘political sandwich’ in an effort to make her message cut through with voters.
“I am passionate about Labor because they have a vision for the future,” she said.