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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 01 Hansard (Thursday, 3 December 2020) . . Page.. 177 ..

Thank you to the 5,985 voters of Tuggeranong who gave their number one vote to the ACT Greens. You chose to vote Green when those in the media and those who commentate on elections wrote off our campaign and said we could not win. You backed us. You stood up for your values at the ballot box and now I have the humbling privilege to make good on your trust over the next four years.

Especially, thank you to my dad, Tom Davis, the greatest man I have ever met. Members, I cannot wait to get to work.

MR BRADDOCK (Yerrabi) (3.25), by leave: I would like to acknowledge the traditional owners of the country that we meet on today, the Ngunnawal people, and recognise their continuing connection to the land, waters and culture. These lands were stolen and sovereignty was never ceded. I also pay my respects to elders past, present and emerging.

Once again, and I am sure it will not be for the last time, I have been called upon for the hard act to speak after my good friend Mr Davis. I know of no other person who is more passionate for his community of Tuggeranong. Whilst I might be of the view that he is wrong, misguided and delusional, as Tuggeranong could never compare to the greener pastures of Gungahlin, I respect and love him for the passion that he brings. I thank the house for the indulgence to give leave so that I can wax lyrical about God’s country, also known as Gungahlin. He is unable to interrupt me for once.

Just as a side note, to all the new members who have spoken over the past two days, did you not realise the opportunity you have forgone? You have unlimited time to speak, every word is protected by parliamentary privilege, and the other members are unable to interrupt you. It does not get better than this.

I would love nothing better right now than to take off my jacket, remove this noose from around my neck, roll up my sleeves, take a swig of coffee and start to pace around whilst I talk. Alas, it is not to be. To those behind me, I am sorry that you are looking at my back right now whilst I talk. I am sure some of you might even think it is my best side.

In researching what to say during an inaugural speech, you become aware of a certain pattern or expectations that are placed on a member: telling a story of self and of policy and politics that are important to oneself, a sort of, “Who am I? Whence do I come? Where am I headed?”

I had no ambition to join politics until about five years ago. Sure, as a teenager I dreamed of being a benevolent dictator of a small coastal town. I can only claim to have achieved one out of those three. On reflection, I see a number of life challenges that have led me to this point.

I was a shy little boy who did not make friends easily but who preferred to spend a good part of his childhood playing in a Queensland creek, battling lantana, climbing fallen logs, getting muddy and playing in the floodwaters. It is nature that has always struck me and given me a sense of peace and harmony.

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