Pauline Hanson's One Nation has parachuted in a Sydney-based IT specialist to go against popular incumbent Nationals' MP Mark Coulton and rattle a Coalition safe seat that has not changed hands since 1984.
Deborah Swinbourn has admitted to the Daily Liberal she "[does] not live in the region but if I won the seat I would most definitely move out of Sydney and into the area."
Bob Redfern was the last One Nation candidate that contested the seat of Parkes in 2001 while it was Donald McNaught in 1998 before that, according to the Australian Electoral Commission election results.
Ms Swinbourn's entry is probably one of Parkes' rarest election moments. A Sydney resident is smitten by frequent visits to Dubbo and Bourke and throws her hat in the ring to support Ms Hanson's party.
Asked about her connection to the region, Ms Swinbourn said she was "genuinely charmed by the local people and area" when she spent time "relaxing and exploring" the region.
With less than a week until election day, and her presence in the local political circle largely unknown, Ms. Swinbourn has yet to hand out One Nation's how-to-vote card at pre-poll centres.
At last week's Meet the Candidates forum at Dubbo RSL, the political parties' campaigners asked by Daily Liberal if they had met Ms Swinbourn replied they hadn't seen her on the campaign trail.
Ms Swinbourn did not deny it, saying, "Unfortunately, I have not been able to campaign in Parkes due to personal family commitments that have kept me in Sydney. I will be hitting the poll booths as soon as I can."
A One Nation campaign headquarters spokesperson said most of their candidates are "on a steep learning curve", and particularly in this election where they have fielded candidates for many seats they aim to steal away from the Liberals, Nationals, Labor and Greens.
Asked why she joined One Nation, Ms Swinbourn said: "I was motivated by the loss of people's freedom and rights eroded by the current government, and the decisions the Labor and Liberals were making [were] bringing hardship to our country ... I had to make a stand."
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