16 May 2019

Last chance Senate saloon (with beers) in Garema Place

| Genevieve Jacobs
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Find your way to the Friday Senate debate in Garema Place by looking for the Soul Defender truck. Photo from this year’s Art, Not Apart by Martin Ollman.

Politics, arts festivals, funky music and a giant pink truck aren’t necessarily a natural fit, but the 2019 election is a curious beast and nowhere more so than in the ACT Senate race.

After falling victim to Section 44 of the constitution, Katy Gallagher is looking to reclaim her seat following a factional stoush. Zed Seselja is under sustained pressure especially from Unions ACT, but may well hang on by his fingertips, while independent Anthony Pesec and others are stirring the pot.

The presumption is that the House of Representatives is safe territory for Labor in the Territory, but the second Senate seat is much more open. As your pencil hovers over the Senate ballot on Saturday, who should you vote for?

How about some Friday night outdoor beers and dance music to help you decide?

The Art, Not Apart arts festival people and The RiotACT are hosting an ACT Senate Candidates Forum on Friday at 5 pm. It’s a non-partisan forum in a casual setting, providing our Senate candidates one last opportunity to speak publicly and give their stance on important issues facing the Canberra region and beyond.

Mediated by Art, Not Apart artist and Canberra stalwart Chris Endrey, the forum will pose key questions to the candidates, some of which will be submitted by members of the community. Your questions can be submitted here.

The participating candidates are: Katy Gallagher, Australian Labor Party; Dr Penny Kyburz – Greens for the Senate; Nick Houston, Democratic Reform Alliance; John Haydon, Sustainable Australia; Anthony Pesec, Independent, with potentially more to be announced. Senator Zed Seselja has been invited but will not attend.

There will be entertainment by Australian Dance Party and Liquid Sunshine Sound System prior to the forum and seating is available in the King O’Malley’s beer garden or adjacent to the stage in Garema Place and City Walk.

As part of ‘Soul Defender Sessions’, this event will be hosted on Art, Not Apart’s mobile artwork and stage, Soul Defender – a repurposed 14-tonne ex-military truck which was launched earlier in the year.

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