- Update : Socialist sets up Vic election battle for Richmond, Andrew Crook, Crikey.com, October 3, 2010.
Yeah. Stephen Jolly of the Socialist Party — one of only two Socialist councillors in the country — is gonna be contesting the seat of Richmond in the Victorian state election (November 27). The official campaign launch is on Saturday, October 2, upstairs @ the British Crown Hotel (14 Smith Street, Collingwood — opposite 3CR).
Stephen is standing in one of four seats in which Labor faces a serious challenge from the Greens. The seriousness of this threat was reinforced by Adam ‘I’ll give a voice to the movements’ Bandt’s recent victory in the Federal seat of Melbourne. Bandt’s decision to support the Federal ALP has meant the Victorian branch is Not. Happy. Joolya. (Greens pact stirs Labor anger, Royce Millar, The Age, September 3, 2010). Still:
While sitting candidates and ministers Richard Wynne (Richmond) and Bronwyn Pike (Melbourne) are known to be squeamish about a full-blown war, Fiona Richardson (Northcote) and Jane Garrett (Brunswick) are keen to fight and are attracting strong financial support to do so.
Wynne and Garrett are members of the ‘Socialist Left’ faction of the ALP, Bronwyn Pike is nominally non-aligned, while Fiona Richardson is ‘Labor Unity’ (‘Right’). Wynne will be confronting Kathleen Maltzahn, Pyke will battle Brian Walters, while Richardson will face off against Anne Martinelli and Garrett Cyndi Dawes. The ALP currently holds Melbourne by a margin of 2.0% (v GRN), Richmond by 3.6% (v GRN), Brunswick by 3.6% (v GRN) and Northcote by 8.5% (v GRN).
The fight for inner-city Melbourne is a tough one for Labor, as appeasing ‘progressives’ likely to support the Greens has to be balanced against the need to placate a broader constituency. As in the case of the federal election campaign, and the battle for Melbourne in particular, unions (one of the sources of the “strong financial support”) will be pouring large sums of money into the campaigns to re-elect Labor. Presumably, they’ll be expecting a much better return on their investment this time around.
See also : Federal deal means nothing to Victorian Greens, Labor, Farrah Tomazin, The Age, September 2, 2010 | Victoria: the left-leaning state? (August 14, 2010) | In Studio: Mark Aarons on the hollow men of the NSW Right, SlowTV, July 2010 | What happened to the Left? (February 27, 2010) | Melbourne : ALP ~versus~ Greens (August 24, 2009) | Bump Me Into Parliament (July 2, 2009).