Welcome to the AIOFP 25th Anniversary event in a wonderful, hot and steamy Bangkok.
THE FADDEN FAVOUR.
The 2022 Federal Election was a great outcome for the Advice Community, we saw the end of a draconian Liberal led Government, the political end of our nemesis Frydenberg and an incoming ALP Minister who ‘gets’ our industry.
What is not commonly understood however is that unless the ALP won the 4 Western Australian marginal seats they did not expect to win, the Coalition would have been re – elected, a scary thought at that particular time.
I never thought I would ever thank Stuart Robert for anything, but we must.
The Fadden result and a swing back to the Liberals has done the Advice community a huge favour. It is no longer a one – horse race at the 2025 Election which is a good thing. It means both major parties will be doing what all parties must do going into an election – tout for votes!
It is also a great outcome for the nation’s democratic health, a competitive Opposition is needed to retain equilibrium.
If you then throw the decision by the Albanese Government to passionately back the ‘Voice’ referendum, some anti ALP feelings developing in WA, rising living costs, interest rates and a worsening global economic climate into the political melting pot, it suggests the 2025 election will be an intensive and closely fought battle.
This is a great outcome for the AIOFP, it presents a significant political opportunity to again capitalise upon and it just may mean the WA based Advisers will play a pivotal role in who wins the next Federal election.
Currently we have a Government systematically dismembering the draconian regime left behind by the Liberals, the Liberals almost apologising for what they did and now a close election looming that gives the AIOFP leverage to chase and demand other amendments – an almost perfect political scenario after a decade of fear and uncertainty.
We suggest letting Minister Jones finish the ‘hot mess’ amendment schedule and start campaigning for other issues in mid – 2024, we don’t want the Minister distracted from this task.
THE FOLLY OF FENCE SITTERS.
In 2019 the AIOFP challenged the traditional Association political position of being bipartisan, in other words a ‘fence sitter’ not wanting to upset anyone. Fence sitters can and do get ‘shot from both sides’ and rarely achieve anything for members.
After the 2019 election we worked on the theory that if we take a political stand, challenge the sitting Government and assist the Opposition with marginal seat support, Canberra will take notice and be wary of our influence. We are pleased to say this has happened.
We are not interested in winning a popularity contest in Canberra, we want all political parties to fear and respect our political capital, that gives us leverage and as the record shows, it gets results.
Canberra has realised that the Advice community has 15,000 Advisers with 200 clients each, that’s 3,000,000 out of 18,000,000 voters over the age of 18years, around 17% of the voting population. Critically, we have a strong money/political relationship with the clients….that’s the politically scary piece for the Politicians.
Considering the seat of Kooyong was considered ‘very safe’ in 2019 at a 12.8% margin, then reduced to 5.7% by 2022 with Frydenberg’s demise, it suggests two things. The Advice communities 17% potential voting power is a significant factor and Frydenberg was not a popular Politician.
A DIFFERENT PERCEPTION AND REALITY.
The Advice community has created not only an intimidatory perception in the corridors of power in Canberra but a reality with the AIOFP marginal seat campaign in the seat of KOOYONG at the last election. There were 280 Advisers and their clients in this seat, the AIOFP lobbied to put the Liberals last on the ballot and vote for whoever they liked.
How exactly effective was it? No one really knows, but the perception is we made a difference and that’s what counts, perception is reality.
Incidentally, please note we did not directly back the ALP, we suggested putting the Coalition/Liberals last on the ballot sheet…..that’s a subtle but significant difference.
The new Liberal Shadow Treasury spokesperson Angus Taylor has stopped short of apologising for his party’s past conduct but they now are wary of us, which is good thing. On the other hand, we have a great relationship with the ALP based on our support which again puts us in a powerful position.
WHAT WE CAN ACHIEVE
The Advice community is in a strong politically strategic position to now eliminate the ASIC LEVY, get tax deductibility of fees and dispose of any residual compliance issues leading into the 2025 election, this however needs either amended or new legislation always a tough and time – consuming task.
All sides of politics will be going into Election mode by mid – 2024, and as always, they will be promising ‘anything’ to get elected. That is the time to strike, when they are ‘singing for their supper!’
There is no doubt the 2004 elimination of the Parliamentary Defined Benefit super fund has put real pressure on all post 2004 Politicians to keep their seat for personal cashflow purposes. This is their personal Achilles Heel…..a former Politician with no pension [and maybe damaged] is not an appealing place to be.
THE NUT AND THE CAKE
We have now cracked the political intimidation ‘nut’ but the icing on the cake is getting the Advice community to establish an election fund to ‘influence outcomes’. As we all know money plays a pivotal in most aspects of life and politics is at the top of the list.
Being realistic, the Advice community is not united and unlikely to be in the short to medium term. However, the AIOFP has 3,500 AR’s and with theoretically another 22 months left until the next election, if we all put away $10 per week over this period we will have around $3,080,000 to play with, that will carry some serious ‘weight’ in Canberra.
We hope on Monday to get a unanimous resolution from all conference delegates to support the cause and that will hopefully arouse support from all members.
Even better if we get support from other Advisers outside of our membership but that is unlikely. The Banks ‘divide and rule’ strategic game over the past 25 years to disrupt the Advice community has unfortunately worked, let’s hope the ‘penny/bitcoin’ drops with Advisers going forward to work out what has been happening.
My view is Advisers are so entrenched in their practice that they rarely look up to see what is going on and think all Associations will naturally act their best interests….LIF/FASEA/Grandfathering ban/compliance legislation suggests it has been a critically poor assumption. That’s what happened 25 years ago in Adelaide, we looked up, did not like what we saw and established the AIOFP.
Please send this link onto other non – members for consideration.
The November Canberra conference later this year will theoretically mark only 18 months out from the 2025 election, a strong attendance will assist our perception and position in Canberra – hope you can join us to support the cause.
Association of Independently Owned Financial Professionals