MOTORING ENTHUSIAST ON COURSE FOR SENATE SEAT
Looking more like an expectant father than his party’s first elected senator, Victorian timber-getter Ricky Muir is nervously awaiting a call that will change his life.
When Mr Muir joined the newly-formed Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party, he could not even contemplate being whisked off to Canberra to represent his home state and motorists across Australia.
“It’s an awesome responsibility; exciting and daunting at the same time,” the potential Senator Muir said from his home in rural Gippsland.
“I am a committed supporter of the AMEP and the freedoms it seeks, but also very conscious of the responsibility I will be taking on if elected to the Senate.”
Mr Muir was candid in addressing comments attributed to him and video footage of “youthful hi-jinks” some years ago. He maintains that the need to provide a steadying influence on a young family means those days are behind him.
“When you have kids, you need to teach them respect for other people, the environment and their future,” he said.
“I am a dedicated four-wheel drive enthusiast who loves to explore and enjoy interesting areas away from the main roads with my family. However I am finding access to those places is becoming so restricted that enthusiasts of the future might never see them.”
The AMEP was formed as the political voice for a wide range of motoring enthusiasts, including owners of modified, classic and 4WD vehicles. It also provides support for businesses which owe their existence to the $11 billion after-market automotive industry.
Mr Muir also believes that the Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party can make a real difference in the areas of road safety and driver education.
“The previous Government laid out an ambitious plan to improve our education system Australia-wide, but no one has taken a similar national approach to equipping young drivers with the skills needed to survive on our roads,” he stated.
“Other countries have dedicated programs that gradually expose young people to the dynamics and responsibilities of driving. I believe this country owes it to our kids and their parents to instil an attitude that driving is a serious responsibility and a privilege.”
Mr Muir acknowledged that some people in the wider community may have linked the AMEP with so-called ‘hoon’ behaviour, and was quick to dispel these fears. “I want to emphasis from the outset that driving which endangers life is not acceptable to our Party, nor the people who represent it.”
“We do, however, have concerns about the targeting of responsible, family-oriented and law-abiding people whose cars appear different from the mainstream. We will also seek Federal intervention in the inconsistent system of State-based vehicle registration requirements that can make a safe and legal car from one state illegal and unsafe in another the minute it crosses the border.”
Like his fellow candidates, Mr Muir hopes that the anxious wait for a result will soon be over.
“Whichever way it falls when the Senate poll is declared, this has been an unforgettable experience,” he commented. “Hopefully I am successful and can use my time in the Senate to create some permanent positive outcomes for current motoring enthusiasts and for future Australian motorists.”