Glenn Druery is an Australian ultra-distance cyclist and an electoral campaigner and political strategist playing a leading role in the electoral success of various micro and minor parties across Australia since the mid 1990s, earning a reputation as the preference whisperer of Australian politics.
After overcoming a serious illness in his 30s, Druery competed in the Race Across America (RAAM) four times, in 2005, 2007, 2009 and 2012. In 2009 his four-man team, Team RANS, won the 5,000 km event in 6 days 3 hours and 40 minutes. During his 2012 RAAM Druery won his race category, generated media attention for victims of the HIV virus, especially in the third world and raised money for HIV research.
In 1996 Druery was instrumental in the formation of the Outdoor Recreation Party. In the lead-up to the New South Wales state election, 1999, he initiated a strategy to deal with preferential voting systems by organising minor parties to be disciplined within a tight preference swapping arrangement, this became known as 'preference harvesting'. The election is generally referred to as "the tablecloth election".
The NSW Legislative Council elects 21 members every four years, with a quota of 4.5 per cent of the vote. In 1999 the ballot paper had to accommodate 264 candidates and 81 parties. Druery played a key role in the election using his 'preference harvesting' strategy and supporting Malcolm Jones of the Outdoor Recreation Party. In the end Jones received preferences from 19 party tickets and won a seat, despite having attracted only 0.2 per cent of the primary vote.
As a candidate, Druery has contested several elections. He ran for the New South Wales Legislative Council in the 1999 and 2003 state elections; as a Liberals for Forests candidate for the Senate in the 2004 federal election; and as a Liberal Democrats candidate for the Senate in the 2010 federal election.
Minor Party Alliance
Druery's Minor Party Alliance was behind the 2013 federal election preference deal successes with candidate elections on 0.2 percent (Sports Party), 0.5 percent (Motoring Enthusiasts Party) and 3.8 percent (Family First Party). Druery works with many minor parties such as the Shooters and Fishers Party, Sex Party, Multicultural Party, Liberal Democrats, Family 1st and many other independents. He also assists in organising preference meetings and negotiating preference flows between parties. Glenn sarted the Minor Party Alliance which involves more than 30 minor parties that helps with advice and guidance through the political processes (some of which are quite complex). Druery has been involved one way or another in acquiring 7 out of the 8 crossbench seats in the Australian Senate. Hear Antony Green, Mal Brough and Glen Druery discuss the preferencing system on RN radio Does the Australian Senate need reforming?
- Glenn Druery taming the US by bike in "world's toughest" race: Daily Telegraph 1 March 2013
- Tablecloth titan's comeback: SMH 18 March 2011
- Opinion: A shoe-in but no walk in the park for O'Farrell: Glenn Druery SMH 23 March 2011
- Federal Election 2013: issues, dynamics, outcomes: APH 22 January 2014
- Preference whisperer goes fishin’ in SA: InDaily 21 February 2014
- Adamski, K. Six days, 5000km and four Everests at Lifestyle, North Shore Times, 14 August 2009. Accessed 4 March 2012
- Team RANS at Team Velokraft blogspot. Accessed 4 March 2012
- Cyclist, Australian (2009-09-01). "Endure it". Australiancyclist.com.au. Retrieved 2010-09-16.
- Paris-Brest-Paris 2003 Non Finishers at BC Randonneurs Cycling Club
- Paris-Brest-Paris 2003 Non Finishers at BC Randonneurs Cycling Club. Accessed 4 March 2012
- Sawer, Prof M. Above-the-line voting—How democratic? pp. 4-5, Paper for Political Science Program, RSSS, ANU (June 2004). Also cited at pp. 18-19 in section Ticket Voting of Australian Electoral Commission second submission to the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters, September 2008, pp 18-19
- Murphy, Damien The bar-towel ballot at Sydney Morning Herald, 7 March 2003. Accessed 4 March 2012
- "Liberal Democratic Party website". Ldp.org.au. Retrieved 2010-09-16.
- Novice politician Ricky Muir undone by a veteran in the business or questionable tactics? SMH 9 June 2014
- Micro-manager behind independents: SMH 10 September 2013
- Bitter dispute erupts over Senate preferences in Queensland: ABC 5 September 2013
- Senate voting inquiry prompted by Glenn Druery's election tactics could put end to preference trading: ABC 31 March 2014
- Promoting people power or gaming the system? Meet 'the preference whisperer': ABC 31 March 2014
- Alliance of micro parties boosts odds for likes of One Nation or Shooters and Fishers gaining Senate spot through preferences: Daily Telegraph 5 September 2013
- Minor parties will prosper in WA Senate re-run, says 'preference whisperer' Glenn Druery: SMH 21 February 2014