Arthur Sinodinos & The Sophisticated One Nation Party

Barrie, the One Nation of today is a very different beast to what it was 20 years ago. They are a lot more sophisticated, they have clearly resonated with a lot of people.
~ Senator Arthur Sinodinos, Insiders (ABC), February 12, 2017

With the WA state election less than a month away, the Tories are shitting bricks over the prospect of hemorrhaging votes to Pauline Hanson’s One Nation Party, and have stitched up a deal to preference Our Pauline above their coalition partners in the Nationals. (See : Liberal Party to direct preferences to One Nation above Nationals in WA, Matthew Doran and Chris Uhlmann, ABC, February 13, 2017.) Two ONP candidates, Dane Sorensen (North West Central) and David Miller (Collie Preston), have made some squawking noises in protest at the deal — they apparently didn’t get the memo that Our Pauline runs the show — and it’s a reversal of previous Tory policy, but it comes with John HoWARd’s blessing, so s’all good.

As for Sindonis’ allegation of sophistication, it’s laughable, but presumably intended to make (liberal) Tories feel less bad about supporting openly racist, homophobic and xenophobic candidates. And as Stewart Lee has observed, ‘if political correctness has achieved one thing, it’s to make the Conservative Party cloak its inherent racism behind more creative language’.

Anyway, here’s to sophistication.


One Nation Queensland candidate Andy Semple withdraws after inappropriate tweets, Melinda Howells, ABC, December 20, 2016
Undeterred, poor old Andy continues to tweet words of wisdom.

Shan Ju Lin dumped as One Nation loses another Queensland candidate, Gareth Hutchens, The Guardian, January 8, 2017; Dumped candidate Lin claims Ashby threat, SBS (AAP), January 30, 2017
Shan Ju Lin remains Founder and President of World Harmony Society Inc..

One Nation candidates push anti-gay messages and Port Arthur conspiracy theory, Joshua Robertson, The Guardian, January 13, 2017
Tracey Bell-Henselin was the Rise Up Australia Party candidate for the federal seat of Fisher at the 2016 federal election. She received 2,210 votes (2.64%).

One Nation candidate Peter Rogers dumped over blog, warns of revolt against Pauline Hanson, Francis Tapim, ABC, January 28, 2017
This One Nation Candidate Suggested The 9/11 Terror Attacks Were Faked, Alice Workman, Buzzfeed, February 2, 2017
Peter Rogers was the ONP candidate for the federal seat of Leichhardt, Queensland in 2016, where he received 6,775 votes (7.63%).
John Cox stood for the Mature Australia Party in Wright at the 2016 federal election, gaining 902 votes (1.0%).

One Nation disendorses candidate for not paying $2,400 upfront fee, Paul Karp, The Guardian, February 10, 2017
Elise Cottam ran as the ONP candidate in the Queensland seat of Wide Bay at the 2016 federal election, gaining 14,022 votes (15.60%).


Above : United Patriots Front’s Perth leader Dennis Huts with Our Pauline.

The 2017 Western Australian state election is scheduled for Saturday, March 11, 2017.

Polling indicates the Turnbull government’s fortunes have slipped since the election, and the Senate success of One Nation has seen the party re-emerge as a real player for the WA state election. For several decades there has been a clear trend for federal governments to damage their state brethren’s election prospects, and the Barnett government will be contemplating the role played by Federal politics in the [defeat] of state conservative governments in Victoria in 2014 and Queensland in 2015.

See the ABC guide for further details.

Anthony Griffiths (Albany); John Zurakowski (Baldivis); Michelle Meyers (Bateman); Julie Mitchell (Belmont); Sam Brown (Bunbury); Susan Hoddinott (Butler); Rozane Bezuidenhout (Cannington); Terry Popham (Carine); Shaun Reid (Central Wheat Belt); David Miller (Collie Preston); Sharon Polgar (Darling Range); Lawrence Shave (Dawesville); Jenny Bennett (Forrestfield); Warren Duffy (Fremantle); Wayne Martin (Geraldton); John Murphy (Jandakot); Ray Gould (Kalamunda); Richard Bolton (Kalgoorlie); Keith Wright (Kimberley); Tim Taylor (Kwinana); Doug Shaw (Mandurah); Tony D’Angelo (Midland); Jim Kelly (Moore); Ross Slater (Murray Wellington); Dane Sorensen (North West Central); David Archibald (Pilbara); Tshung Chang (Riverton); James O’Malley (Rockingham); Eketerina Zacklova (Roe); Margaret Dodd (Scarborough); Sandra Old (Swan Hills); Sandy Baraiolo (Thornlie); Joe Darcy (Wanneroo); Alex Scholz (Warnbro); Greg Moroney (Warren Blackwood).
AGRICULTURE: Rod Caddies, Craig McKinley, Emma McKinley; EAST METRO: Charles Smith, Christopher Fernandez, Lloyd McIntosh; MINING/PASTORAL: Robin Scott, Justin Keating, Janine Varley; NORTH METRO: John Bombak, Ian Hamilton; SOUTH METRO: Philip Scott, Richard (James) Eldridge, Ekaterina Viktorovna Andreeva; SOUTH WEST: Colin Tincknell, Sean Butler, Cameron Bartkowski.

Here’s WA’s Federal election candidate who received just 37 votes, Phoebe Wearne, The West Australian, July 14, 2016
A big swing towards maverick Queenslander Bob Katter has failed to translate into electoral success in WA, where his party’s candidate battled to win even 40 votes. The wooden spoon for the least votes won in WA at this month’s Federal poll is expected to go to the sole WA Senate candidate for Katter’s Australian Party, Susan Hoddinott, who attracted 37 of a possible 1.5 million votes to date.

One Nation: a party that knows how to pick ‘em, Gary Adshead, Natalie Richards and Daniel Emerson, The West Australian, January 22, 2017
Christian Pastor Lawrence Shave, ONP candidate for Dawesville, digs chicks in bikinis: What might have taken One Nation by surprise was a recruitment advertisement the pastor placed on a backpacker website in 2015. “Now hiring bikini baristas in Perth,” it read. “Wanted for a coffee/tea drive-through shop establishment. Uniform is a one or two-piece bathing suit and shorts. Must be 18 years or older! No exceptions!”

Dumped One Nation candidate plans to send ice addicts to ‘uninhabited island’, Catherine Healey, Yahoo7 News, January 24, 2017
Brian Brightman was dumped by ONP as the party’s candidate for Joondalup not because of his ice plan but on account of the fact that he ‘confessed to a 23-year-old conviction for [the] theft of $1100 worth of departure tax stamps when he was a customs officer at Perth Airport’.

WA election 2017: Pilbara One Nation candidate says taxpayers should not fund ‘lazy’ single mums, Joseph Dunstan, ABC, January 31, 2017
David Archibald has authored dozens of articles for neo-con zine Quadrant, all along the lines you’d expect (climate change denialism, racism, advocacy of genocide, etc.). At the 2016 federal election he was the Australian Liberty Alliance candidate in Curtin, where he received 1,544 votes (1.8%).

WA One Nation candidate under fire over ‘sexually explicit interests’, Brendan Foster, WA Today, February 3, 2017
Cameron Bartkowski liked some sexually-explicit pages on Facebook … which is apparently A Big Deal.

One Nation candidate is a South African model and TV presenter who wants a ‘separate state for white people’, Stephen Johnson, The Daily Mail, February 6, 2017
Rozane Bezuidenhout migrated to Australia from South Africa in 2008.

One Nation candidate linked gay marriage to polygamy, Kylar Loussikian, The Australian, February 14, 2017
Ross Slater writes (August 31, 2016) : Legalising same sex marriage will open the door to compulsory homosexual teachings in homes, schools and churches, thereby confusing children, students and congregation because heterosexuality will not be recognised as normal. Eventually legalising polygamy, multitudinous marriages, sibling marriage and reducing the age of consent will follow because identical, naïve arguments used for legalising same sex marriage will be used for legalising the others.

One Nation candidate says gay activists are using ‘Nazi mind control’, Michaela Morgan, SBS, February 15, 2017
Michelle Meyers is a … brilliant candidate with lots of well thought-out, practical, ideas. She is ensuring the financial security of this country for years to come.

One Nation candidate advocated killing Indonesian journalists, attacked gays, Muslims and blacks, Michael Koziol, The Sydney Morning Herald, February 16, 2017; One Nation deal defended by WA Premier despite candidate’s homophobic, anti-Muslim tweets, Andrew O’Connor, ABC, February 17, 2017
Real estate agent Richard Eldridge was previously a candidate for Bob Katter’s party in the WA seat of Canning in 2013. He got 776 votes (0.88%).

See also : Dear Arthur, please explain One Nation’s sophistication, Bernard Keane, Crikey, February 15, 2017 | Making sense of Hanson, Bernardi and the New Right, Karen Middleton, The Saturday Paper, February 11, 2017.

About @ndy

I live in Melbourne, Australia. I like anarchy. I don't like nazis. I enjoy eating pizza and drinking beer. I barrack for the greatest football team on Earth: Collingwood Magpies. The 2024 premiership's a cakewalk for the good old Collingwood.
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One Response to Arthur Sinodinos & The Sophisticated One Nation Party

  1. @ndy says:

    Poll Bludger: Barnett’s One Nation deal might have just handed Labor 5 seats
    William Bowe
    February 13, 2017

    Sunday’s news that the Liberals and One Nation have struck a preference deal ahead of the March 11 Western Australian election has been a long time coming, having been telegraphed well in advance not just by Colin Barnett, but by numerous other conservative leaders and ex-leaders around the country.

    The now standard Liberal Party line was again trotted out by Senator Arthur Sinodinos on Insiders Sunday morning: that the One Nation of today is “a lot more sophisticated” than the one John Howard forbade preference dealings with two decades ago, and that due respect must be paid to the fact that the party has “clearly resonated with a lot of people”.

    Coming after the Rod Culleton fiasco, the eye-popping eccentricities of Senator Malcolm Roberts, and the disendorsement of more election candidates than can readily be kept track of, the falsity of the first of these observations could hardly be more plain.

    It’s the latter of the two that is more to the point — the Liberals generally, and the beleaguered Barnett government in particular, clearly feel they can no more win an election in the current environment without One Nation than Labor can without the Greens.

    Despite all that, the comprehensiveness of the accommodation with Hanson’s jerry-rigged Western Australian operation has come as something of a shock.

    Far from merely declining to put One Nation last, the Liberals’ side of the bargain is, to all intents and purposes, to put the party second — including ahead of their partners in government, the Nationals.

    This well and truly puts the Nationals on the defensive in the seats they hold outside their wheat belt heartland, including party leader Brendon Grylls’ seat of Pilbara, and they look certain to have their wings clipped in the upper house, where the odds on One Nation holding the balance of power after the election have shortened considerably.

    Whether it will do comparable harm to Labor is another matter entirely.

    First and foremost, it’s far from certain that the deal will do what it says on the tin: deliver One Nation preferences to the Liberals in the lower house.

    In the past, the recommendations on One Nation how-to-vote cards haven’t made a huge amount of difference to the behaviour of their voters, in part because the party lacked the volunteers needed to get them into voters’ hands on polling day.

    This point has not been lost on the Liberals, judging by the party source who was quoted as saying the party might “ask its polling booth people to hand out One Nation how-to-vote cards”.

    However, there’s another complication that can’t so easily be dodged — One Nation is only contesting 35 out of the 59 lower house seats, and providing succour to the Liberals clearly didn’t feature in its calculations when deciding which ones.

    Excluded from the list are many of the Liberals’ most sensitive seats: Perth, Morley and Balcatta, each a must-win for Labor; and Mount Lawley, Joondalup, Bicton, Southern River and Burns Beach, of which Labor will need at least two or three to make it to the magic 30.

    The deal stands to benefit the Liberals only in their ultra-marginal seats of Forrestfield, Belmont and Swan Hills, which are probably beyond salvation in any case; Kalamunda, which Labor can get by without; and Wanneroo, which would undeniably be a very handy seat for the Liberals to retain.

    In addition to the seats already mentioned, each of which is located in the Perth metropolitan area, are the regional city seats of Bunbury and Albany, which have responded well to One Nation in the past.

    Bunbury was always going to be tough for Labor, but the Nationals’ high hopes of nabbing the seat with the retirement of popular Liberal incumbent John Castrilli are now diminished.

    Albany is a normally conservative seat that has been held for Labor against all odds by Peter Watson since 2001, when One Nation preferences were an important factor in helping him over the line.

    If history repeats itself in reverse in Albany, and the Liberals can hang on in Wanneroo, it might just be that the One Nation deal will indeed save Barnett’s bacon.

    However, the electoral implications don’t begin and end with the narrow question of preferences flows.

    The preference deal has been perhaps the biggest conversation-stopper of the campaign so far — and history suggests the signals such deals send have an important impact on how voters perceive the campaign.

    Some hard data on this question emerged over the weekend courtesy of a timely large-sample poll conducted for the Greens by Essential Research.

    One of its findings was that 30% of those intending to vote Liberal would be less likely to do so if the party struck a deal with One Nation (another 26% said they would be more likely to, but as the Liberals have these votes already, this is of little comfort to them).

    An idea of how that might look in practice is provided by the Queensland election in 1998, when the One Nation preference question fuelled a backlash against the Liberals in the more cosmopolitan areas of Brisbane.

    If this offers any guide at all, the Liberals will have just handed Belmont, Perth, Morley, Balcatta and Mount Lawley to Labor on a platter.

    Taking all that into account, it’s hard not to conclude that the deal is a destructive long-shot gamble by a government that believes itself to be in desperate straits.

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