The following comments are excerpts from a speech by Lyle Shelton at the Toowoomba announcement of his appointment as Federal Director of Communications for the Australian Conservatives on 4 February 2018:
"In just 12 months, the Australian Conservatives have founded a movement that pundits in Canberra thought was impossible. It’s a movement that has engaged grassroots conservatives in a way no other party has for decades," Mr Shelton said.
"Australia desperately needs a better way than never-ending deficits and skyrocketing debt, an uncertain energy future, radical social experiments like ‘safe schools’ and we deserve better than politically correct elites supressing free speech.
"The major parties have abandoned so many of the virtues that made Australia.
"Few things opened my eyes to this more than the marriage campaign.
"Last year’s plebiscite convinced me to make the switch to partisan politics.
"The consequences that flow from changing the Marriage Act illustrate the lack of common sense and principle in Canberra.
"The Coalition Government’s inability or unwillingness to protect basic human rights including those of freedom of speech and freedom of religion – tipped me over the edge.
"That a Liberal-National government could not or would not protect the freedom of speech and religion of almost five million Australians stunned me.
"This is not the Australia I grew up in.
"Australian Conservatives is the only political party committed to the values we took for granted as a nation up until this point in our history," Mr Shelton said.