JONATHON Duniam has framed a resignation letter in his office.
It belonged to his grandmother Iris Graham, who quit the Australian Labor Party in 1971 after an unsuccessful run for the state upper house.
Mr Duniam, the Liberal party's third Senate ticket candidate, is bucking the family tradition of running for Labor.
"I am the first of my clan to cross the Styx river and join the Liberal Party," he said. The state's youngest Liberal Senate contender, and son of Waratah-Wynyard deputy mayor Mary Duniam, is meeting voters ahead of the federal election, which could fall sooner in the year if a double dissolution is called.
That scenario could work in Mr Duniam's favour as the Liberals could gain the five seats needed for him to reach Canberra, according to state political analyst Kevin Bonham. He missed a spot as the second candidate on the Liberal Senate ticket by one vote during preselection.
Among an older team of federal candidates, including Mr Duniam's former employer Eric Abetz, he is an unusually fresh face. The 33-year-old admits that the party has traditionally struggled to connect with younger voters.
He contrasts Australia's political scene to that of the US, where young people campaign for candidates they've never met.
"I just don't know what the recipe is," Mr Duniam said.
Younger voters wanted to hear about issues that mattered to them from people who were credible and relatable, he said.
University of Tasmania politics academic Richard Herr said there was a disengagement and belief among the public that the major parties were at the heart of undemocratic practices in Parliament.
The personalities of people like Mr Duniam helped convince them that the parties were growing more representative, Professor Herr said.
Mr Duniam joined conservative politics after seeing his parents struggle with high interest rates during the Keating years.
"When you see your parents under so much pressure, it is quite a formative experience," he said.
He has had stints working for senators Paul Calvert and Stephen Parry, and is Premier Will Hodgman's deputy chief of staff.
In a checked open-neck shirt, he doesn't think of himself, or come across as, a stereotypical politician. He identifies the Liberal Party's first-term problems, saying party instability didn't help before the leadership change.
"When we as a party are talking about ourselves, rather than the things that matter to the people of Australia, that is entirely unhelpful," Mr Duniam said.
"Voters expect more. We've had a chance now to reset everything to get on with the job of good government."
The Hobart-based candidate, raised in Burnie, has learnt the obstacles facing small business by opening a childcare centre in May with his wife, Anisa, using money from the sale of their house.
"It was two years of hell trying to get approvals and permits," he said. "It was just madness."
After a slow start, it was at one point on the verge of going belly-up, but it later found success.
"Needless to say the risk associated with that precipitated some sleepless nights in the household," Mr Duniam said. "There was no certainty we would ever see that money again."
He believes people ultimately vote with their hip pocket on issues such as education, health and employment.
When it comes to social policy, Mr Duniam does not support same-sex marriage and is yet to be convinced that climate change is human-made, although he supports improved environmental practices.
While leaving the state is almost a rite of passage for many, he wants to help young people stay in Tasmania to work and finish their studies.
"We should be working hard with the three levels of government and with the University of Tasmania to encourage them to stay here or come back," Mr Duniam said.