Thursday, July 22, 2010

Smaller parties race to get candidates up

Parties specifically representing Christian values are rushing to get their candidates and campaigns on track and due to smaller organisations and budgets, are a fair way behind Liberal, Labor and the Greens.

Most interest for these parties is in the Senate where in 2004 CDP leader Fred Nile went close to winning a seat in NSW and Family First's Steve Fielding was elected on the back of Labor preferences in Victoria.

The CDP have announced Shoalhaven mayor Paul Green as their lead Senate candidate in NSW and further candidates are expected to be announced across the nation shortly.

Family First have just announced Greg Swane as their lead candidate for the Senate in NSW along with Linda Rose in Western Australia and Bod Day in South Australia.

SA is Family First's strongest state and they have a small chance of winning the sixth seat in that state. Senator Fielding is likely to struggle in Victoria without another unusual preference deal while both CDP and Family First had a strong showing in WA and one or the other could go close on preferences.

Family First is relatively new in NSW with Rev Gordon Moyes becoming the first parliamentarian when he left CDP to join Family First as a sitting member in the NSW Legislative Council.

The senator positions up for election in 2010 are those who were elected in 2004, the year Mark Latham gave John Howard a resounding victory. Whereas usually the six seats are split three right, three left in each state, Barnaby Joyce stole a 'left' seat in Queensland and Steve Fielding did the same in Victoria. With Labor now in a much stronger position and the Greens polling extremely well, it is more likely that Labor and the Greens will fight over the final senate position in most states.

For an excellent breakdown of how senate results may look, read Tom Colebatch's article in The Brisbane Times

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