Wikileaks' Election Flop Shows How Important Preferences Are To Minor Parties

Getty/ Peter Macdiarmid

After the Wikileaks Party’s poor result in the federal election, Julian Assange’s father has begun a tour of the country to assess support for his son’s political party.

Analysis by The Australian newspaper found preference decisions made by the party before the September 7 election played a role in its performance, after it attracted very few group votes.

In the days after the federal election, there was a lot of debate about minor parties and the complex system of senate preferences which could see a candidate from the Motoring Enthusiast Party Ricky Muir installed in the Upper House.

According to the article, Wikileaks received fewer than 41,000 group votes in Victoria, where Assange was running as the No 1 candidate on the Senate ticket. Assange received just 6897 first-preference votes in his name.

This, according to The Australian, shows how important securing preference deals is to minor parties. In the days before the election several Wikileaks candidates quit the party after disagreements over who it would award its preferences to.

In NSW the party — founded by an activist known for his views of freedom-of-information — gave its first-preferences to far-right candidates and parties, including the Australia First Party, which was spearheaded by a convicted criminal and former neo-Nazi.

The party also gave preferences in WA to the Nationals instead of one of its biggest supporters, Greens senator Scott Ludlum.

There is more at The Australian.

Now read: WikiLeaks Blasts Dreamworks’ ‘The Fifth Estate’ Adaptation In 4,000-Word Memo

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