The week in politics for sleep-deprived mums: It's time to vote.

As Game of Thrones reached its final, bloody conclusion for another year, so does our very own battle over who gets to sit in the big chair.

I’m sad about Game of Thrones finishing, not so sad about this marathon election campaign staggering across the finish line.

All the political parties – Labor, Liberal and the Greens had negative ads on high rotation this week.

Not wanting to confuse people, all the ads were basically, IF YOU VOTE FOR THE OTHERS YOU CAN’T HAVE NICE THINGS.

At every opportunity this week the Prime Minister warned of chaos and dysfunction if people voted for minor parties or independents.

Why? Both are polling well, particularly the Nick Xenophon Team in South Australia who are expected to pick up a swag of lower house seats. Popular independent MPs Cathy McGowan, Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor are all contesting regional seats where the polls show the result could go down to the line.

"Jobs and growth." Image via Getty. 

Australia isn't alone with indifference to the political mainstays. The groundswell of support for Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump in the United States demonstrates this - along with the unexpected vote by Britain to exit the European Union.

Bill Shorten reflected on the Brexit instability in a speech to the National Press Club this week. He said it was driven by “a sense of inequality, from people feeling marginalised, forgotten… left behind by global change. It is a deep-seated sense that political promises are wasted words”.


I feel that this sentiment has an Australian context and reflects why minor parties and independents will probably do very well tomorrow.

Globally, times are far less prosperous for most working people. Wage growth has gone backwards in the UK, cited as one of the conditions that caused Brexit. Wages have also been stagnant in Australia and the US for some time.

what to expect from the 2016 election

"Globally, times are far less prosperous for most working people." Shorten says he is all about working families. Image via Getty. 

Throughout this campaign, most swinging voters I’ve spoken to sound like they’ve had enough. The policies don't matter to people because the politics has put them off.

For the people out there who are marginalised, the politics might be meaningless but policy does matter. There’s no better reminder of this than today, as the cogs on the National Disability Insurance Scheme wheel begin to turn. What a wonderful thing this is.

Over the past couple of months we've looked at a range of different policies that matter to parents - childcare, the Great Barrier Reef, paid parental leave.


This campaign has gone on for half of my daughter’s life. She’s four and a half months old and I now see the result of the election through the prism of how it will impact on my little girl’s future.

"Over the past couple of months we've looked at a range of different policies that matter to parents." Image via iStock. 

Becoming a parent has exposed me to how government policy matters in a way I understood, but hadn't experienced before. Thankfully, I’m pretty healthy and I’d never had to use the public hospital system. I had a risky, complicated pregnancy and I am now completely in awe of how it works, after receiving the world’s best care, not far from home and without having to open my wallet.

We have a lot to be grateful for in Australia. Try to resist the temptation to draw rude things on your ballot paper because you (understandably) have the irrits with this campaign.

The policies of the parties are different - and if you are still undecided, here is an excellent policy comparison site that might help you.

If you don’t know where to vote, this site will tell you where the sausage sizzles are at.

Happy voting.