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The Independent Left, or the Ferguson Left as it is more commonly known, is a political faction within the Australian Labor Party. The faction was founded by Martin Ferguson, a former president of the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU). The power base of the Ferguson Left is concentrated in the NSW and Victorian branches of the party.
Although educated in Sydney, Martin Ferguson is a Victorian member of the Australian House of Representatives. Ferguson Left members of parliament belong to the parliamentary left factions at both state and federal levels, although the faction remains independent of the Left in internal party ballots. Members include Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Brendan O'Connor. Outside of federal politics faction membership extends to former Victorian government Minister for Housing and Local Government and current MLC Candy Broad, and Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) National Secretary Michael O'Connor.
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