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Synthesis/Regeneration 16   (Summer 1998)

Australian Greens Election Success

Deb Foskey, International Secretary, Australian Greens

Dear Green comrades,

The Australian Capital Territory Greens (Canberra) have just participated in territory elections (February 21). Three years ago, we contested for the first time and gained two seats in the 17 member assembly. The voting system is the Hare Clark system is a version of proportional voting. This time, we gained the same proportion of votes, but they led only to the re-election of Kerrie Tucker with 10%+ of the vote. Shane Rattenbury was narrowly defeated in the seat of Ginninderra. The outcome took two weeks to be finally known. Lucy Horodny was the Green in this seat, but retired at last election to put more time into the rest of her life.

Nationally, we look like having a federal election this year, as a double dissolution election is likely, as the Howard Coalition government has failed to get reactionary legislation on industrial relations and native title through the Senate, where Greens senator Bob Brown was one of the staunchest allies of Aboriginal people and workers. Currently, our government is at war with members of the Maritime Union of Australia: the wharfies. Last night a court allowed an injunction for Patrick Stevedores, the private company which has just sacked all union members, against the right of unionists and community members to assemble, allowing picketers to be arrested.

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