The NSW member for Lyne, Rob Oakeshott is in the news again - still throwing his weight around – threatening to “walk away” from Labor over tax reform. He made the tax reform forum, coming up in October, a condition of his power-sharing deal with Labor.
But he’s “completely underwhelmed” by Labor’s response to the Henry review of taxation and said "I will be doing what I can to make sure that they treat it as their most serious work of the 43rd parliament and, without being too explicit, I will be extremely disappointed if they don't," he said. He compared his personal passion for tax reform to another unpopular man, fellow independent Andrew Wilkie’s personal commitment to poker machine reform.
Oakeshott knows how unpopular he is, not only with his own electorate, but with almost everyone. "In no way do I underestimate the concerns of my constituents or my need to communicate with them more clearly about the decisions I have made and the benefits to our region," he said.
"In no interview have I stated that I blame 'shock jocks' for anything to do with current politics.” He added "I challenged Ray Hadley and Chris Mitchell to a town hall-style debate on their values and my values and on who is really representing the community, as opposed to dividing the community."
So will Rob Oakeshott be remembered as the man who "sold out" to further his own ends or could he possibly be responsible for making a real improvement to our daily lives? Only time will tell. He may be one of the most hated men in Australia today but he has great genes - his grandfather Captain John Oakeshott was a prisoner of war and survived the Sandakan Death Marches in Borneo.