April 18, 2019 00:24:16
South Australian independent senator Tim Storer will not seek re-election in next month’s federal election, saying he cannot commit to the job for a full six-year term with his young family.
It brings the senator’s political career to an end after just over 400 days in Parliament.
- Tim Storer became a senator in 2018, after falling out with Nick Xenophon and quitting his party
- He would have faced an uphill battle to be re-elected as an independent
- He listed the electric vehicle inquiry and opposing the Government’s $36 billion company tax package as among his achievements
Senator Storer said he made the “difficult” decision after long consideration of what running again would mean for his family.
“I believe it would be disingenuous of me to ask South Australians for their vote in these circumstances,” he said.
“I am deeply appreciative of the support I have received from many members of the community and the respect with which I have been treated by my fellow senators and other parliamentarians.”
Senator Storer ran on the Nick Xenophon Team Senate ticket in the 2016 election but was not declared elected.
He later fell out with Nick Xenophon and quit his party, launching an unsuccessful bid to the High Court to take Mr Xenophon’s place when he resigned in 2017 to return to South Australian state politics.
But he did secure a spot in the Senate the following year, replacing former senator Skye Kakoschke-Moore last March when she fell afoul of section 44 of the constitution.
Difficult path to re-election
Senator Storer would have faced an uphill battle to be re-elected as an independent because of his peculiar path to the Senate, relatively low profile, and the fact that this is not a double dissolution election, meaning he would need a sizeable bump to his vote.
Ms Kakoschke-Moore is now seeking to regain the seat for the rebranded Centre Alliance party.
Senator Storer becomes the latest in a string of MPs and senators to leave politics for family reasons.
Labor MP Kate Ellis is quitting politics to spend more time with her family, as is Liberal frontbencher Kelly O’Dwyer.
Former Member for Perth Tim Hammond quit last year, saying at the time that he “did not anticipate the profound effect [his] absence would have” on his entire family.
It sparked discussion at the time about whether the political system can be more family friendly.
‘I have been as good as my word’
Senator Storer identified his strongest achievements in the job as the electric vehicle inquiry, and last year’s “medevac” bill to give doctors more power over asylum seeker medical transfers.
He said he was proud to have opposed the Federal Government’s $36 billion company tax package.
“I have been as good as my word and hope to have contributed to the standard of debate and the quality of legislation over these 14 months,” he said.
“Thoughtful and principled independents have an important role to play, as I hope I have demonstrated.
“I urge voters to consider that as they weigh up who to support on May 18.”
Senator Storer registered a party called the Tim Storer Independent SA Party last August.
The Australian Electoral Commission approved a new logo for the party on April 7.
April 18, 2019 00:16:53