Former Liberal Party MP, and ex-Sky News commentator, Ross Cameron has joined the Liberal Democrat Party, citing disappointment with the governing Coalition and its support of using lockdowns to tackle the CCP virus in Australia.
His announcement follows the decisions of fellow Liberal Party members John Ruddick and Campbell Newman to quit the party.
Cameron, who served in federal Parliament from 1996 to 2004 under former Prime Minister John Howard, said the decision was sparked by disappointment with the Liberal Party saying it no longer represented values such as tight fiscal spending and greater freedoms for the individual.
— Liberal Democratic Party (@LibDemAus) July 26, 2021
The former Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer is hoping the Liberal Democrats can attract high-profile candidates and is confident the party will be a viable alternative for voters.
“We are actively looking for the biggest, most magnetic candidate in every state—a recognisable figure—with the aim of winning the last senate quota in each of them,” he told The Australian.
“The party is enjoying quite strong financial support, and we are testing a number of different names and candidates. We will be running an anti-lockdown message like Nigel Farage’s single-message campaign on Brexit,” he said.
“I was a member of the Liberal Party for 40 years, and I can say we will tear strips off the Liberals and Nationals like hammerhead sharks tearing at the carcass of a sperm whale.”
Cameron was ousted from Sky News Australia in 2018 over controversial racist remarks made on air.
Earlier in July, former Liberal Party member John Ruddick said he would be putting his “political energy” into the Liberal Democrat Party, arguing that the current Coalition government was at a “crisis point” and only two options were available for conservatives.
“Option one is to try and reform the Liberal Party. Option two is a fresh start,” he told Sky News Australia.
“There is a trend going on, fellow conservatives, and that trend is going against us in the Liberal Party. The Liberal Party … it’s become the Australian Democrats,” he added.
The Liberal Democrats are courting former Queensland Premier Campbell Newman to join their ranks.
Newman, who was the popular lord mayor of Brisbane before becoming state premier, said he was “dismayed” that the Liberal Party no longer stood for values such as smaller government, support for small business, and defending free speech.
“The last straw for me has been the destruction of people’s livelihoods, jobs and freedoms under governments’ heavy-handed response to COVID-19 across the nation,” he said in a statement. “It is important to keep Australians safe, but it is equally important to keep us free. The two concepts do not need to be mutually exclusive.”
“Our federal and state governments have failed to honour the spirit of individual freedom that is at the heart of not only Liberal Party values, but wider Australian values.”