List of political parties in Australia

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The politics of Australia has a mild two-party system, with two dominant political groupings in the Australian political system, the Australian Labor Party and the Liberal/National Coalition. Federally, 16 of the 151 members of the lower house (Members of Parliament, or MPs) are not members of major parties, as are 17 of the 76 members of the upper house (senators).

The Parliament of Australia has a number of distinctive features including compulsory voting, with full-preference instant-runoff voting in single-member seats to elect the lower house, the Australian House of Representatives, and the use of the single transferable vote to elect the upper house, the Australian Senate.

Other parties tend to perform better in the upper houses of the various federal and state parliament since these typically use a form of proportional representation.

History[edit]

Two political groups dominate the Australian political spectrum, forming a de facto two-party system. One is the Australian Labor Party (ALP), a centre-left party which is formally linked to the Australian labour movement. Formed in 1893, it has been a major party federally since 1901, and has been one of the two major parties since the 1910 federal election. The ALP is in government in Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia, the Northern Territory, and the Australian Capital Territory.

The other group is a conservative grouping of parties that are in coalition at the federal level, as well as in New South Wales, but compete in Western Australia and South Australia. The main party in this group is the centre-right Liberal Party. The Liberal Party is the modern form of a conservative grouping that has existed since the fusion of the Protectionist Party and Free Trade Party into the Commonwealth Liberal Party in 1909. Although this group has changed its nomenclature, there has been a general continuity of MPs and structure between different forms of the party. Its modern form was founded by Robert Menzies in 1944. The party's philosophy is generally liberal conservatism.

Every elected prime minister of Australia since 1910 has been a member of either the Labor Party, the Liberal Party, or one of the Liberal Party's previous incarnations (the Commonwealth Liberal Party, the Nationalist Party of Australia, and the United Australia Party).

The Liberal Party is joined by the National Party, a party that historically sought to represent rural and agricultural interests and now focuses on rural coal mining interests. The Nationals contest a limited number of seats and do not generally directly compete with the Liberal Party. Its ideology is generally more socially conservative than that of the Liberal Party. In 1987, the National Party made an abortive run for the office of prime minister in its own right, in the Joh for Canberra campaign. However, it has generally not aspired to become the majority party in the coalition, and it is generally understood that the prime minister of Australia will be a member of either the Labor or Liberal parties. On two occasions (involving Earle Page in 1939, and John McEwen from December 1967 to January 1968), the deputy prime minister, the leader of the National Party (then known as the Country Party), became the prime minister temporarily, upon the death of the incumbent prime minister. Arthur Fadden was the only other Country Party, prime minister. He assumed office in August 1941 after the resignation of Robert Menzies and served as prime minister until October of that year.

The Liberal and National parties have merged in Queensland and the Northern Territory/South Australia, although the resultant parties are different. The Liberal National Party of Queensland, formed in 2008, is a branch of the Liberal Party, but it is affiliated with the Nationals and members elected to federal parliament may sit as either Liberals or Nationals. The Country Liberal Party was formed in 1978 when the Northern Territory gained responsible government. It is a separate member of the federal coalition, but it is affiliated with the two major members and its president has voting rights in the National Party. The name refers to the older name of the National Party.

Federally, these parties are collectively known as the Coalition. The Coalition has existed continually (between the Nationals and their predecessors, and the Liberals and their predecessors) since 1923, with minor breaks in 1940, 1973, and 1987.

Historically, support for either the Coalition or the Labor Party was often viewed as being based on social class, with the upper and middle classes supporting the Coalition and the working class supporting Labor. This has been a less important factor since the 1970s and 1980s when the Labor Party gained a significant bloc of middle-class support and the Coalition gained a significant bloc of working-class support.[1]

The two-party duopoly has been relatively stable, with the two groupings (Labor and Coalition) gaining at least 70% of the primary vote in every election since 1910 (including the votes of autonomous state parties). Third parties have only rarely received more than 10% of the vote for the Australian House of Representatives in a federal election, such as the Australian Democrats in the 1990 election and the Australian Greens in 2010, 2016 , 2019 and 2022. Additionally, support for Independent politicians in Australia has resulted in major parties having to come to agreements to form government at times, including the 2010 Australian Federal Election and may contribute to the 2022 Australian Federal Election.

Membership requirement[edit]

To maintain registration, parties must demonstrate that they have a certain number of members.

Federally, unless a party has current parliamentary representation, they must demonstrate they have 1500 members.[2][3] For the state and territory elections, parties require 100 members in Tasmania and the ACT, 200 in South Australia and Northern Territory, 500 in Victoria, Queensland and Western Australia, and 750 in New South Wales.[4]

Federal parties[edit]

Federal parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology MPs Senators
Australian Labor Party Anthony Albanese Social democracy
Social liberalism[5]
77 / 151
26 / 76
The Coalition
Liberal Party of Australia Peter Dutton Liberal conservatism
Economic liberalism
48 / 151
28 / 76
National Party of Australia David Littleproud Conservatism
Agrarianism
16 / 151
5 / 76
Australian Greens Adam Bandt Green politics
Progressivism
4 / 151
12 / 76
Pauline Hanson's One Nation Pauline Hanson Right-wing populism
Hansonism
0 / 151
2 / 76
Jacqui Lambie Network Jacqui Lambie Tasmanian regionalism
Populism
0 / 151
2 / 76
Centre Alliance No leader Social liberalism
Populism
1 / 151
0 / 76
Katter's Australian Party Robbie Katter Conservatism
Developmentalism
1 / 151
0 / 76


Federal non-parliamentary parties[edit]

Parties listed in alphabetical order as of April 2022:[6][7]

Name Leader Ideology / Objective
Animal Justice Party Bruce Poon Animal welfare
Australian Christians Ray Moran Social conservatism
Christian right
Australian Citizens Party Craig Isherwood LaRouche movement
Economic nationalism
Australian Democrats Lyn Allison Social liberalism
Anti-corruption[8][9]
Australian Federation Party Glenn O'Rourke Australian nationalism
Conservatism
Australian Progressives Therese Faulkner Progressivism
Centrism
Australian Values Party Heston Russell Veterans' rights
Populism
Country Liberal Party[a] Lia Finocchiaro Liberal conservatism
Economic liberalism
David Pocock David Pocock Progressivism
Environmentalism
Drew Pavlou Democratic Alliance Drew Pavlou Left-wing populism
Pro-Taiwan sentiment
Federal ICAC Now (FIN) N/A Federal ICAC advocacy
Anti-corruption
FUSION: Science, Pirate, Secular, Climate Emergency Andrea Leong Secular humanism
Techno-progressivism
Indigenous-Aboriginal Party of Australia 'Uncle' Owen Whyman Indigenous rights
Constitutional reform
Informed Medical Options Party Michael O'Neill[12] Anti-vaccination
Anti-fluoridation
Kim for Canberra Kim Rubenstein Progressivism[13]
Legalise Cannabis Australia Michael Balderstone Cannabis legalisation
Liberal Democratic Party John Humphreys Classical liberalism
Right-libertarianism
Reason Australia Fiona Patten Civil libertarianism
Progressivism
Rex Patrick Team Rex Patrick South Australian regionalism
Anti-corruption
Seniors United Party of Australia Bob Patrech Pensioners' interests
Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party Robert Brown Right-wing populism
Green conservatism
Socialist Alliance Ryan Fitzsimmons Eco-socialism
Anti-capitalism
Sustainable Australia Party William Bourke Environmentalism
Anti-immigration
The Great Australian Party Rod Culleton Right-wing populism
Conspiracy theorism
The Local Party No leader Left-wing populism
Participatory democracy
TNL Victor Kline Social liberalism
United Australia Party Craig Kelly Right-wing populism
Victorian Socialists No leader Democratic socialism
Anti-capitalism
Western Australia Party Julie Matheson Regionalism

State and Territory parties[edit]

New South Wales[edit]

Divisions of the federal parties:[14]

Parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology MLAs MLCs Has federal division Membership
The Coalition
Liberal Party of Australia (NSW Division) Dominic Perrottet Liberal conservatism
Economic liberalism
33 / 93
11 / 42
Yes 11,906[15]
National Party of Australia – NSW Paul Toole Conservatism
Agrarianism
12 / 93
6 / 42
Yes 3,036[15]
Australian Labor Party (NSW Branch) Chris Minns Social democracy
Social liberalism[5]
37 / 93
14 / 42
Yes 15,427[15]
Greens New South Wales No leader Green politics
3 / 93
3 / 42
Yes 3,368[15]
Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party Robert Brown Green conservatism
Right-wing populism
2 / 93
2 / 42
Yes Unknown
Animal Justice Party Mark Pearson Animal rights
0 / 93
2 / 42
Yes Unknown
Pauline Hanson's One Nation Mark Latham Right-wing populism
Australian nationalism
Hansonism
0 / 93
2 / 42
Yes Unknown
Seniors United Party of Australia Fred Nile Pensioners' interests
0 / 93
1 / 42
No Unknown

Non-parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology Has federal division
Flux Party (NSW) Nathan Spataro Direct democracy No
Liberal Democratic Party Classical liberalism
Right-libertarianism
Yes
Reason Party NSW Civil libertarianism
Progressivism
Yes
Socialist Alliance No leader Socialism
Anti-capitalism
Yes
Sustainable Australia Party Environmentalism
Sustainable development
Yes
The Small Business Party Small business advocacy Yes
The Open Party Anti-lockout laws
Civil libertarianism
No

Victoria[edit]

As of the Victorian Electoral Commission:[16]

Parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology MLAs MLCs Has federal division
Australian Labor Party (Victorian Branch) Daniel Andrews Social democracy
Social liberalism[5]
55 / 88
17 / 40
Yes
The Coalition
Liberal Party of Australia (Victorian Division) Matthew Guy Liberal conservatism
Economic liberalism
21 / 88
9 / 40
Yes
National Party of Australia – Victoria Peter Walsh Conservatism
Agrarianism
6 / 88
1 / 40
Yes
Australian Greens Victoria Samantha Ratnam Green politics
3 / 88
1 / 40
Yes
Derryn Hinch's Justice Party Stuart Grimley Justice reform
Anti-paedophilia
0 / 88
2 / 40
Yes
Liberal Democratic Party Tim Quilty Classical liberalism
Right-libertarianism
0 / 88
2 / 40
Yes
Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party (Victoria) Jeff Bourman Green conservatism
Right-wing populism
0 / 88
1 / 40
Yes
Fiona Patten's Reason Party Fiona Patten Civil libertarianism
0 / 88
1 / 40
Yes
Sustainable Australia Party Clifford Hayes Environmentalism
Sustainable development
0 / 88
1 / 40
Yes
Animal Justice Party Andy Meddick Animal rights
0 / 88
1 / 40
Yes
Transport Matters Party Rod Barton Taxi industry advocacy
0 / 88
1 / 40
No
Democratic Labour Party Bernie Finn Social conservatism
Christian democracy
0 / 88
1 / 40
Yes

Non-parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology Has federal division
Health Australia Party Kerry Bone Naturopathy
Anti-vaccination
Yes
Pauline Hanson's One Nation No leader Right-wing populism
Australian nationalism
Yes
Victorian Socialists No leader Democratic socialism Yes

Queensland[edit]

As of the Queensland Electoral Commission:[17]

Parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology MPs Has federal division
Australian Labor Party (Queensland Branch) Annastacia Palaszczuk Social democracy
Social liberalism[5]
52 / 93
Yes
Liberal National Party of Queensland David Crisafulli Liberal conservatism
Economic liberalism
34 / 93
Yes
Katter's Australian Party Robbie Katter Right-wing populism
Developmentalism
3 / 93
Yes
Queensland Greens No leader Green politics
Left-wing populism
2 / 93
Yes
Pauline Hanson's One Nation No state leader Right-wing populism
Australian nationalism
1 / 93
Yes

Non-parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology Has federal division
Animal Justice Party (Queensland) Animal rights Yes
Civil Liberties & Motorists Party Jeffrey Hodges Public ownership No
Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party (QLD) Andrew Pope Green conservatism
Right-wing populism
Yes
Informed Medical Options Party Anti-vaccination
Anti-fluoridation
Yes
Legalise Cannabis Qld (Party) Cannabis legalisation Yes
North Queensland First Jason Costigan North Queensland statehood
No

Western Australia[edit]

As of the Western Australian Electoral Commission:[18]

Parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology MLAs MLCs Has federal division
Australian Labor Party (WA Branch) Mark McGowan Social democracy
Social liberalism[5]
53 / 59
22 / 36
Yes
National Party of Australia (WA) Mia Davies Conservatism
Agrarianism
4 / 59
3 / 36
Yes
Liberal Party of Australia (WA Division) David Honey Liberal conservatism
Economic liberalism
2 / 59
7 / 36
Yes
Legalise Cannabis Western Australia Party Sophia Moermond Cannabis legalisation
0 / 59
2 / 36
Yes
Greens Western Australia Brad Pettitt Green politics
0 / 59
1 / 36
Yes
Daylight Saving Party Wilson Tucker Daylight saving advocacy
0 / 59
1 / 36
No

Non-parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology Has federal division
Australian Christians (WA) Jamie van Burgel Conservatism
Christian right
Yes
Animal Justice Party Katrina Love Animal rights Yes
The Great Australian Party Rod Culleton Constitutional conspiracy
Right-wing populism
Yes
Health Australia Party Naturopathy
Anti-fluoridation
Yes
Liberal Democratic Party Aaron Stonehouse Classical liberalism
Right-libertarianism
Yes
Flux Daithi Gleeson Direct democracy No
No Mandatory Vaccination Party Cam Tinley Anti-mandatory vaccination No
Pauline Hanson's One Nation Colin Tincknell Right-wing populism
Australian nationalism
Yes
Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party (WA) Rick Mazza Green conservatism
Right-wing populism
Yes
Socialist Alliance WA No leader Socialism
Anti-capitalism
Yes
Sustainable Australia Party John Haydon Environmentalism
Sustainable development
Yes
WAxit Party Russell Sewell Western Australia independence No
Western Australia Party Julie Matheson Regionalism
Populism
Yes

South Australia[edit]

As of the Electoral Commission of South Australia as of 2022:[19]

Parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology MHAs MLCs Has federal division
Australian Labor Party (SA Branch) Peter Malinauskas Social democracy
Social liberalism[5]
27 / 47
9 / 22
Yes
Liberal Party of Australia (SA Division) David Speirs Liberal conservatism
Economic liberalism
16 / 47
8 / 22
Yes
Greens South Australia Tammy Franks Green politics
0 / 47
2 / 22
Yes
SA-BEST Connie Bonaros Social liberalism
0 / 47
2 / 22
Yes
Pauline Hanson's One Nation No leader Right-wing populism
Australian nationalism
Hansonism
0 / 47
1 / 22
Yes

Non-parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology Has federal division
Animal Justice Party Louise Pfeiffer Animal rights Yes
National Party of Australia (SA) Jonathon Pietzsch Conservatism
Agrarianism
Yes
Australian Family Party Bob Day Christian politics
Right-wing populism
Conservatism
No
Family First Party Tom Kenyon Christian politics No
SA Party - Stop Overdevelopment & Corruption Yes
Real Change SA Stephen Pallaras No
Legalise Cannabis South Australia Party Damon Adams Cannabis legalisation Yes
Liberal Democratic Party Classical liberalism
Right-libertarianism
Yes

Tasmania[edit]

As of the Tasmanian Electoral Commission:[20]

Parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology MHAs MLCs Has federal division
Liberal Party of Australia (Tasmanian Division) Jeremy Rockliff Liberal conservatism
Economic liberalism
13 / 25
4 / 15
Yes
Australian Labor Party (Tasmanian Branch) Rebecca White Social democracy
Social liberalism[5]
9 / 25
4 / 15
Yes
Tasmanian Greens Cassy O'Connor Green politics
2 / 25
0 / 15
Yes

Non-parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology Has federal division
Australian Federation Party Tasmania Australian nationalism
Conservatism
Yes
Animal Justice Party Karen Bevis Animal rights Yes
Jacqui Lambie Network Jacqui Lambie Populism
Regionalism
Yes
The Local Party Yes
Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party Tasmania Rebecca Byfield Green conservatism
Right-wing populism
Yes

Australian Capital Territory[edit]

As listed with the ACT Electoral Commission:[21]

Parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology MPs Has federal division
Australian Labor Party (ACT Branch) Andrew Barr Social democracy
Social liberalism[5]
10 / 25
Yes
Liberal Party of Australia (A.C.T. Division) Elizabeth Lee Liberal conservatism
Economic liberalism
9 / 25
Yes
ACT Greens Shane Rattenbury Green politics
6 / 25
Yes

Non-parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology Has federal division
Animal Justice Party Animal rights Yes
Australian Climate Change Justice Party No
Australian Federation Party (ACT) Australian nationalism
Conservatism
Yes
Belco Party Bill Stefaniak No
Canberra Progressives Kerry Markoulli Progressivism Yes
David Pollard Independent No
Democratic Labour Party (DLP) Christian democracy
Distributism
Yes
Liberal Democratic Party Classical liberalism
Right-libertarianism
Yes
Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party (ACT) Green conservatism
Right-wing populism
Yes
Sustainable Australia Party John Haydon Environmentalism[22]
Sustainable development
Yes
The Canberra Party No
The Community Action Party (ACT) No

Northern Territory[edit]

As of the Northern Territory Electoral Commission:[23]

Parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology MPs Has federal division
Australian Labor Party (NT Branch) Michael Gunner Social democracy
Social liberalism[5]
14 / 25
Yes
Country Liberal Party Lia Finocchiaro Liberal conservatism
Agrarianism
8 / 25
Yes

Non-parliamentary parties[edit]

Name Leader Ideology Has federal division
Australian Federation Party NT Australian nationalism
Conservatism
Yes
Animal Justice Party Animal welfare Yes
Ban Fracking Fix Crime Protect Water Braedon Earley Regionalism No
Northern Territory Greens No leader Green politics Yes
Shooters and Fishers Party Green conservatism
Right-wing populism
Yes
Territory Alliance Terry Mills Regionalism No

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Following the resignation of CLP Senator Sam McMahon, the party's status was changed from a "parliamentary party" to a "non-parliamentary party".[10][11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "OzPolitics.info". OzPolitics.info. Archived from the original on 28 September 2009. Retrieved 16 June 2010.
  2. ^ "Changes to federal election rules including party sizes and names pass Parliament". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 9 June 2022.
  3. ^ Green, Antony. "More on Minimum Membership Requirements for Registering Political Parties". Antony Green's Election Blog. Retrieved 9 June 2022.
  4. ^ Green, Antony. "More on Minimum Membership Requirements for Registering Political Parties". Antony Green's Election Blog. Retrieved 9 June 2022.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i Sources:
  6. ^ "Current Register of Political Parties". Australian Electoral Commission. 10 April 2019. Retrieved 22 October 2019.
  7. ^ "Party registration decisions and changes". Australian Electoral Commission. 22 October 2019. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
  8. ^ "National anti-corruption commission urgent". Australian Democrats. Australian Democrats.
  9. ^ "Rorts Watch". Australian Democrats. Australian Democrats.
  10. ^ "Change to the Register of Political Parties – Country Liberal Party (NT)" (PDF). aec.gov.au. Australian Electoral Commission (AEC). 28 January 2022.
  11. ^ Garrick, Matt (6 February 2022). "Senator Sam McMahon's resignation hurt the CLP. But can the party rebound?". ABC News.
  12. ^ "No jab, no vote: new anti-vax party registered". Crikey. 8 November 2016. Retrieved 21 November 2016.
  13. ^ Johnson, Chris (18 May 2022). "Election 2022: What's going on in Canberra's senate race?". The Mandarin. Retrieved 6 June 2022.
  14. ^ "Information About Registered Parties". www.elections.nsw.gov.au. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  15. ^ a b c d Hardaker, David (30 July 2021). "National party membership tumbles in NSW, Greens now have more". Crikey.
  16. ^ "Currently registered parties". Victorian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 10 August 2019.
  17. ^ "Political party register". Electoral Commission Queensland. Retrieved 20 July 2017.
  18. ^ "Registered Political Parties in WA". Retrieved 12 February 2018.
  19. ^ "Register of political parties". Electoral Commission of South Australia. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  20. ^ "Party Register". Tec.tas.gov.au. Tasmanian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 20 July 2017.
  21. ^ "Register of political parties". Retrieved 20 July 2017.
  22. ^ "Policy Platform - Sustainable Australia Party". Retrieved 8 January 2019.
  23. ^ "Register of political parties in the Northern Territory". NTEC. Retrieved 30 October 2018.