We hope you’ve enjoyed your long, long weekend. For most campaigns, the combination of school holidays and a long weekend brings all momentum to a halt - that’s not been the case here at Team Sophie, where momentum continues to build daily.
This week we ran 10 flyer teams, put up 50 signs and knocked on another 1,000 doors. The momentum for Independent representation is building in Kew, new supporters are flocking to Sophie HQ faster than we could have possibly anticipated. On Friday, we packed out our upstairs deck with 40 people for Pizza Night and ran out of pizza within the first twenty minutes! It was fantastic meeting so many new supporters and of course, we ordered extra pizzas so no one went hungry. Pizza Nights are every Friday at 177 High Street, Kew from 6:30 PM and we hope to see you there this week.
Not a level playing field
Despite gaining new supporters every day and knocking on 1,000 doors a week, campaigns cost money and we are facing an uphill financial battle in Kew. The Age on Friday revealed huge advantages for the major parties in Victoria’s donation laws. Under the new laws, an individual can only donate a maximum of $4,320 to a party or candidate. This rule applies to everyone and on the surface it seems fair.
Dig a little deeper and you’ll see that the new rules have created a ‘taxpayer-funded wall’ that protects those already in Parliament. The Labor and Liberal Party each have a nominated entity that can make unlimited donations to their party above the $4,320 cap. As an Independent candidate, Sophie can’t nominate such an entity. The laws also don’t count party membership and union affiliation fees as a donation, adding roughly $1.5 million to the election fund of the major parties every year.
But wait! There's more!
The major parties also receive per-vote public funding for their campaigns. $6.33 for every vote and this money is paid out in advance. Between Labor, The Liberals and The Greens, $27 million of taxpayer money has been handed out to fund their campaigns.
I know what you’re thinking. The rules aren’t fair and they should be changed. We agree but unfortunately, the rules provide huge advantages to the major parties because the major parties make the rules. Only with Independents like Sophie Torney in Parliament can we make the rules fair for everyone.
With the grand final done and dusted, media attention will now turn to the next big event on the calendar. The election is only 62 days away and early voting starts in just 50 days. We know that 50% of voters will vote early before election day—that means we have less than two months to raise awareness of Sophie’s campaign in Kew.
Now is the time to join in all the fun and start volunteering for Team Sophie. We are running flyer teams and doorknocking every day and both of these activities boost Sophie's name recognition and her chances of winning. Every flyer you hand out and every door you knock on is another person who now knows that Sophie Torney is Kew’s community Independent candidate and an option for them when they vote.
Native forest logging
Our community has time and time again expressed concern about the logging of our native forests. Today, Sophie is heading to Toolangi to witness first-hand the devasting impacts of native forest logging.
Sophie will be sharing what she sees and learns today on her socials, make sure you follow her to get updates.
Save the date
LGBTIQA+ Social Event
Sophie will be meeting with the LGBTIQA+ community on Saturday 8th October from 3-5 PM at The Postmaster Hotel, 186 High Street, Kew. If you’re interested in attending, please keep the date free in your calendar and we will provide booking details later in the week.
Doorknocking day of action
On Saturday, October 15th we are planning a HUGE doorknocking day of action. The day of action will run from 10 AM to 1 PM. We will announce our meet-up location soon but please keep October 15th free in your diary.
Here’s where you can meet Sophie for a chat this week.
Kew Junction - 12-1:30 PM
Balwyn Woolworths - 11 AM-1 PM
Sophie HQ 177 High Street, Kew - 2-3 PM
Kew Junction - 10-11:15 AM
Balwyn Woolworths - 11:30 AM-1 PM
You can also meet Sophie at our weekly pizza night, every Friday from 6:30 PM at 177 High Street, Kew. Bring the kids or bring and friend and enjoy some Friday night pizza!
Every Friday from 4 PM our volunteer manager Johanna Andrianopoulos runs a youth engagement meet-up at Sophie HQ. This is a great opportunity for young people to get involved in politics, share what’s important to them and have a key role in our campaign.
If you know of a young person between the ages of 16-25, send them along to Sophie HQ on Fridays from 4 PM.
I look forward to seeing you all out on the campaign trail this week.