Newspaper article Gympie Times, The Qld.

Are Greens Headed for Extinction? Lessons from the Past Need to Be Heeded

Newspaper article Gympie Times, The Qld.

Are Greens Headed for Extinction? Lessons from the Past Need to Be Heeded

Article excerpt

Byline: Colin Claridge

WHEN parties begin the pre-selection process for candidates, one suddenly realises the next federal election isn't that far away.

The Greens have selected ex-senator and ex-Canadian, Larissa Waters, to head their next Senate ticket. The man who filled her vacated seat amidst last year's fiasco, ex-Australian Democrat Andrew Bartlett, now intends to contest the federal Lower House seat of Brisbane, currently held by the LNP (ex-Liberal).

So many exes in that last paragraph. One has to wonder, given the Greens' electoral fortunes of late, whether there'll be a few more in the ex-category after the next poll.

The wheels seem to be coming off the party that was founded under the guidance of Dr Bob Brown in 1992.

Their idealism is to be commended, if nothing else.

But their policy settings fail to attract the broad appeal that will see them be anything but a minor player with grand ambitions.

Any hope they have of cementing anything like a permanent presence relies solely on support they can muster in metropolitan areas.

Ironic really, given the complete lack of that particular colour in that habitat.

Whether or not Mr Bartlett's move to the House of Representatives will be successful will depend on factors of which policy is only one.

He comes originally from a party that fizzled out as the electorate grew tired of the infighting that plagued them in the years following the departure of their creator.

Sound familiar?

Internal ructions are a sure recipe for electoral disaster, whatever party.

Disunity is death, as they say.

The major parties tend to survive that problem.

Even the great Labor split of the 1950s didn't result in that party falling into oblivion.

The ALP survived.

The spinoff DLP not so much.

Weight of numbers in membership and voter support tend to see the major parties through the rough patches. …

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