In just 12 months, Senator Cory Bernardi has founded a political 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.
I'm delighted to return to my home-state of Queensland to help build a political movement that I believe is indispensable to the future of this State and our nation.
It was here in Toowoomba, as a local councillor that I learned the power of grassroots campaigning.
And it was here in Toowoomba that I became restless to see a more just and compassionate society.
And now after more than a decade living in Canberra fighting for Christian truth and freedom, I can tell you that Canberra is broken.
But we conservatives believe in things that are worth fighting for.
The turning point
Sadly, the major parties have abandoned so many of the virtues that made Australia great.
The major parties work very well for the power brokers in the winner's circle – but they aren't working for everyday Australians.
Few things opened my eyes to this more than the marriage campaign.
This is an edited copy of the speech Lyle Shelton gave in Toowoomba when it was announced he was joining Australian Conservatives.
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