This past weekend saw the start of disjointed and ineffectual TV ads for the Unity Team. Team candidates shocked at this poorly produced trash began working the phones wondering if this candidate photo slideshow was going to be how their big team contributions (rumoured to be $15K per candidate) was destined to be misspent. Manning, who claims he's a good fiscal manager has grossly mismanaged the Unity Team marketing budget. Why would voters turn over the CRC's $300M yearly budget to this guy?
Unity candidates also have been increasingly angry and vocal at the lack of policies they can discuss with the voters including the obvious lack of a clear Unity Team alternative to the Entertainment Precinct. Manning had been poised to go with the "remodel the Civic Theatre" plan but backed off after Convention Centre management weighed in with their needs for more delegate space. Candidates have been ordered to make as their only statement: "we support a new theatre, but only appropriately costed and sighted (sic)." Several of the candidates have copied these exact words into their own campaign documents not even realising the grammatical error.
One candidate has claimed he sent a message to Kevin Byrne, Unity Team Leader in Exile, that he'd quit the campaign if the Hartley Street site became Unity Team policy!
Informal polling yesterday has also suggested that Manning has no traction with the primarily younger voters, seeing little synergy between a wealthy, retired 68 year old and the reality of working and raising a young family in Cairns.