Madigan to launch farming party

09 Apr, 2015 07:15 AM
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Senator John Madigan. Photo: Andrew Meares
People are frustrated about what's going on in Canberra
Senator John Madigan. Photo: Andrew Meares

FORMER Democratic Labour Party (DLP) senator John Madigan has become the latest crossbencher to create a political party in his own name, saying voters are sick of the major parties' "spin".

The Australian Electoral Commission will advertise on Thursday that John Madigan has applied to register The John Madigan Manufacturing and Farming Party.

Senator Madigan said he had created his own party because of "increasing discontent" with mainstream parties, especially in rural and regional Australia and in safe seats, where voters feel their concerns go unheard.

"People are frustrated about what's going on in Canberra," Senator Madigan said.

"They are frustrated about the lack of focus and the leadership arguments and the sense of unreality that exists in parliament. They are frustrated by the spin and bullshit."

Senator Madigan said he hoped forming his own party would put him touch with like-minded people. He said he was open to the idea of fielding candidates in lower house electorates across Australia and for the Senate in other states.

The party will advocate halving the company tax rate (currently 30 per cent) for businesses manufacturing in Australia.

It will argue for tighter food labelling laws and extra subsidies for farmers, although Senator Madigan insisted that manufacturing workers and those "living off the land" were not looking for "a handout or even a hand-up".

String of parties

Senator Madigan is the third sitting senator to establish an eponymous party,following the creation of the Nick Xenophon Team and the Jacqui Lambie Network in recent months.

He was the first of the crossbench senators to defect from his party when he quit the Democratic Labour Party in September 2014. Since then, two of Clive Palmer's senators, Jacqui Lambie and Glenn Lazarus, have also abandoned their party to sit as independents.

Clive Palmer is threatening legal action against Senators Lazarus and Lambie, but the DLP has conceded it cannot prosecute Senator Madigan in court to try to reclaim his Senate spot.

The ABC's election analyst Antony Green said John Madigan would struggle to get re-elected on the back of his own name but could get there on preference harvesting.

"Madigan's problem is that he's running in Victoria and he will struggle to get coverage, If he had to rely on getting there on his own he'd really struggle," Mr Green said.

"He can get there by preference harvesting just as Ricky Muir can get there by preference harvesting,"

"But they won't get there under their great vote," he said. Mr Green said Senator Lambie had a better chance because she was running in the smaller state of Tasmania and has a strong public profile.

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READER COMMENTS

Bushie Bill
14/04/2015 11:38:29 AM

A better name would be the Madigan Mugs and Morons Party.
Old Crow
15/04/2015 3:35:36 PM

Poor old Billy, no one talks to you anymore do they.
Bushie Bill
16/04/2015 9:17:29 AM

OC, people who I am prepared to communicate with need to be intelligent, educated and informed. This, as you should be able to grasp, leaves a lot of agsocs out.
Bruce Watson
16/04/2015 10:39:25 AM

At the risk of appearing senile, I have to state that I agree totally with Bushie here. Eponymous "parties" are merely the cult of celebrity contaminating Australian political understanding. Parties should encapsulate central ideas not scatter-brained ephemeral personalities.
Old Crow
16/04/2015 4:09:10 PM

That's a great compliment to me , thanks Bill.
Percy
16/04/2015 8:16:05 PM

John, Great idea to start another country party; but to call it something with your own name in there only points to a lack of vision or something fickle in your make-up. Find a real name for a political party, get with Nick Xenaphon and start a movement that those few remaining farmers can get behind to make rural voices heard. You both probably have the experience to lead but need real support to make a difference. But beware as those major parties will join forces to destroy you.

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