Can the Dems really bounce back?

Joe Canberran 10 September 2007 12

ABC online has this article with commentary from ANU Social Sciences Professor John Warhurst suggesting the Dems have in local politics entered “… a downward spiral from which there is no return”.

Dem leader Senator Lyn Allison suggests this will not be the case with the Dems in Canberra undergoing a membership resurgence.

While I hope this is true (I can’t stand the idea of only two parties having any say in our Governance particularly in a place like Canberra where we don’t have a second house to put in place any checks and balances) what do you think? Are the Democrats really dead in the home of Australia’s Democracy and just not know it yet or will they rise again to make sure the big boys play fairly in our tin pot little local parliament?

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12 Responses to Can the Dems really bounce back?
Thumper Thumper 8:26 am 12 Sep 07

Can the Dems bounce back?


Maelinar Maelinar 2:52 pm 11 Sep 07

The coalition of the independents…

asp asp 12:40 pm 11 Sep 07

“who truely are the third force in politics these days”

A third force? The greens? Perhaps “third Voice” is more accurate. They’re hardly a force.

bonfire bonfire 9:10 am 11 Sep 07

the greens ?


Pandy Pandy 8:25 am 11 Sep 07

If the Dems get more than 5,000 votes in total in the ACT I would be surprised.

Better vote for the Greens who truely are the third force in politics these days. Vote for them first and make it known to the majors who really have to be listened to now/future.

caf caf 11:16 pm 10 Sep 07

Pandy: Would you care to explain how any formal vote is “wasted” under our fully-preferential voting system?

dalryk: In the short term, by far the most likely outcome is that the Lib/Nat Coalition will hold power in the Senate (anyone think we might be seeing the first double-dissolution election in a long time soon?). In the longer term, if they both get some support then it’s unlikely that either the Greens or Family First would have the balance of power in their own right – far more likely is that the support of *both* would be required by the government of the day for any particular legislation (or, alternatively, the support of the opposition). This is clearly not going to happen for legislation that goes too far in either direction (with the possible exception of some socialist economic policy which is often supported by socially conservative groups like FFS – however the ALP has been moving away from this since Hawke came to power and it’s never been Liberal policy).

norvan norvan 9:55 pm 10 Sep 07

Just to let you know, The Democrats launched their 2007 ACT campaign today. While the local ACT Democrats have been deregistered as a party, this has no impact on the current federal campaign. In fact, the ACT Democrats membership numbers have grown by 50% in just the past two months. The majority of new Democrats members across Australia are coming from Generation Y, and these members are not living up to the GenY apolitical stereotype. They are motivated, educated and interested. I think there is a real feeling in the Canberra community that the Democrats can hold the major parties to account. As the policies of past 2 years have shown, the Democrats are sorely missed.

dalryk dalryk 9:34 pm 10 Sep 07

problem with losing the Democrats (at least at a federal level) is that it leaves the Greens and Family First as the two parties who might hold the balance of power. I’m not sure which would be worse personally, bunch of commie nut-jobs, or right-wing religious fundamentalists….

At the local level though I don’t think it makes a big difference. The ACT legislature’s such a disfunctional body to start with, one more or less dissenting view probably won’t change things much.

Pandy Pandy 8:40 pm 10 Sep 07

Democrats who?

Don’t waste your votes boys.

BeyondThought BeyondThought 7:12 pm 10 Sep 07

“I can’t stand the idea of only two parties having any say in our Governance particularly in a place like Canberra”

Geez, we have a funny proportional representation system which is more fair than single member electorate. Basically, don’t vote for the major parties and that’s your solution.

Or better still, vote for a thoughtful individual irrespective of their party.

asp asp 5:22 pm 10 Sep 07

correction: a bi-cameral system does not ensure fairer…

asp asp 5:20 pm 10 Sep 07

“I can’t stand the idea of only two parties having any say in our Governance particularly in a place like Canberra”
Well, there’s actually three “main ones” and these all have member(s) in the assembly.

“don’t have a second house to put in place any checks and balances”
Need I point out that a uni-cameral system does not ensure a fairer or more balanced governance of a country, state or terriroty. New Zealand’s national parliament is uni-cameral. They do okay with only one house.

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