The federal election campaign is well underway and following a second week which saw the first live debate, scare tactics, and a leader forced out of action, The Standard logged its pub test panellists' reactions.
Michael Killen, 21, first-time voter
For Mr Killen, the main election issue on his mind in the last week was affordable housing.
"It was definitely promising to see that Labor was promising a $10 billion housing fund for Australians," he said.
"But both parties are failing to address renters, such as myself. It feels like a hard situation to get out of when you are renting."
Mr Killen said he thought Scott Morrison performed best in the past week due to his increased presence on the first-time voter's social media.
"I think that his video campaigns have been a lot more effective at reaching people," he said.
"I actually saw them without having to go out of my way."
The 21-year-old said there was no standout campaign moment for him during the campaign's second week as the party leaders' neglect of policy relevant to his demographic made him "tune out" at times.
"I don't think any of the particular speeches really impressed upon me any sense of urgency," he said.
"I'm wanting to focus on the policy, but that's not what I'm hearing at the moment."
However, Mr Killen said he sensed a shift in fortunes for the Liberal Party on election day after the second week of the campaign.
"The Liberals are probably going to have some success this election based on how wide their reach is at the moment," he said.
"Myself and a lot of other young people are very oriented with social media.
"To see such an active presence shows that they are pushing towards young voters and people who may not be as aware of their previous policy history."
Rod Carter, 84, retiree
Mr Carter said he thought the tone of the election campaign had "gotten worse".
He said he was getting "tired" of the party leaders' focus on marginal seats and neglect of the rest of the country.
"There's no real policies coming out, just a bunch of financial gifts to areas they visit," he said.
Mr Carter said the discourse surrounding the Solomon Islands' security deal with China stood out for him in the past week.
"But it's not really a surprise from the Coalition," he said.
"They virtually ridiculed the Pacific Islands' concern with climate change."
The 84-year-old said he had started to get "turned off" by the political scare campaigns from both sides of parliament, and looked forward to how the leaders would tackle the expected rise in inflation and interest rates.
"I feel for the young ones, I feel for people with families, I think they're gonna be in a terrible situation," he said.
"Unless they start to get inflation down, then interest rates are going to keep going up, which is going to really hurt these people."
Mr Carter said although Anthony Albanese was in COVID-19 isolation, the group of Labor representatives, including Jim Chalmers, Penny Wong and Richard Marles who stood up in the leader's place, performed better than the Liberal party.
"I thought they did quite well... I think they prevailed," he said.
Mr Carter said he was considering changing his vote from Labor to independent due to his growing interest in Wannon independent candidate Alex Dyson.
"He could really give Tehan a run for his money," he said. "But in effect, I'm really voting for a change in government."
Colleen Hughson, 49, videographer
Ms Hughson said she was already feeling "quite uninspired" by the major party leaders.
The First Ladies freelance videographer said Mr Morrison and Mr Albanese's scare tactics were turning many people like her off politics.
"They're not talking about the real issues, they're just making up these stories about each other," she said.
"I've lost a bit of confidence in both major parties. It's all a bit of a circus.
"I think a lot of people are tuning out of politics because it's just the same old banter that we're just sick and tired of hearing."
Ms Hughson said she thought the party leaders had inadequately addressed gender equality in the past week.
"That's always been a big issue for me," she said.
"In Australia, we've got one woman being murdered a week at the hands of their partner or ex-partner."
She said she was also disappointed with Mr Morrison's support of Katherine Deves' candidacy in the NSW seat of Warringah.
"I just don't think our leaders should be supporting trans bigotry," she said.
"I see it as equal to racism, sexism, ageism, all those things. We need leaders that will show true leadership."
Ms Hughson said due to Scott Morrison's dangerous criticism of China, she thought Anthony Albanese was the better leader on the campaign after the second week.
"(Morrison) threatened our national security," she said.
"I'm worried about the threats that he's made, and the offence and insults he's hurled at China. He's really damaging our relationship (with China)."
She said she would still be voting for Labor at this stage, and thought that they "might just be in with a chance" on election day.
"But it's hard to say," she said. "People tend to go with what's safe and the status quo, so I wouldn't be surprised if the Liberals got in again."
IN OTHER NEWS
David de Carteret, 38, bar owner
For Mr de Carteret, the major parties' acknowledgement of the need to fill labour shortages during the second week of the election campaign piqued his interest.
"I know that Labor have said that they're going to have doctors and medical staff brought in from overseas," he said.
"But there's yet to be any nuanced discussion around the hospitality and tourism industries."
Despite not completely tuning into the leaders' first live debate, Mr de Carteret said he caught snippets of Mr Morrison's comment on children with disabilities.
"I did hear about it because I know that Morrison made what's been alluded to as a bit of a gaffe with regard to his 'blessed' children (for not having a disability)," he said.
"Some of the responses that came out of that were really good to hear, like Dylan Alcott suggesting that people with disabilities don't need to have pity, they need access."
The 38-year-old said a standout moment in the election campaign last week came locally as his attention was drawn to the support behind independent candidate Alex Dyson at an event held last Saturday.
"There seems to be a bit of a groundswell there," he said.
"I'd be interested to see how that plays out."
This week, Mr de Carteret said his vote was leaning towards the Greens.
"I feel like I'm moving away from the major parties," he said.
He said he suspects there will be a hung parliament on May 21 with Labor potentially forming a minority government.
Charmaine Clarke, 55, Gunditjmara elder
Ms Clarke said she was becoming exasperated by the lack of plans for the cost of living issues she raised last week.
"Their policies aren't really addressing any of these issues," she said.
"They're just not listening to us. They're not really making the right pitches."
"Everything's gone up (in price), and with the tax offset for low income and middle income people going to expire in June, I'm really worried about that."
The 55-year-old said she would like to see more Indigenous affairs on the election agenda including implementation of the Uluru Statement of the Heart recommendations.
"I know a lot of Australians have been moved by it," she said.
"It has extraordinary intent and aspirations for us all to get behind."
Ms Clarke said she could not bring herself to pick whether either party leader had performed well in the past week out of "frustration".
"I'm certainly aware there will be a lot of swinging voters, and I'm actually starting to feel like a swing vote and myself," she said.
Ms Clarke said although Mr Albanese's isolation meant Mr Morrison had more exposure, she still expected Labor to win.
"Not much has shifted," she said.
"But I think quite a few independents will come into the mix as well."
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