Minor Party Alliance
The Minor Party Alliance (MPA) is a collaborative undertaking of small Australian political parties, created by Glenn Druery's "Independent Liaison" business, which assists in organising preference meetings and negotiating preference flows between minor parties (often referred to as micro-parties) in Australia. The aim of the Alliance is the election of Alliance candidates to Australian upper houses based upon the accumulation of their primary votes and the registered "above-the-line" (or “group voting ticket”) party preferences to reach an electoral quota. For the Australian Senate, the quota for a half-Senate election in each State is normally 14.3%. The MPA effectively aims to "game" the electoral system, an act it believes to be justified, based upon their perception that the Australian electoral system is unfair and heavily biased against minor parties.
The election of a number of minor party candidates with very small primary votes at the 2013 federal election led to changes in the group voting rules for the Senate, which enabled the 2013 preference deals to be made, in time for the 2016 federal election, designed to prevent a repeat of the such deals.
As at November 2018, the electoral laws of Victoria and Western Australia still have group ticket voting that enable similar preference deals being organised for those states’ upper houses, and such a scheme was made for the Victorian Legislative Council at the 2018 Victorian state election. The proliferation of minor parties is attributable to the law that by contesting an election as a party, a candidate can accept votes below and above the line on election day. This enables preference deals to be made, which would not be possible as an independent.
1999 NSW preference deal
Druery initiated the MPA at the 1999 New South Wales state election and his then untested theories elected three people to the Legislative Council: Peter Wong from Unity, Peter Breen from Reform the Legal System and Malcolm Jones from the Outdoor Recreation Party. Malcolm Jones was elected to the Legislative Council with a primary vote of 0.19%, or 0.042% of a quota.
2013 Senate preference deal
Druery is known as the preference whisperer of Australian politics, and his Minor Party Alliance was behind the 2013 federal election preference deal successes. These resulted in the election to the Senate of Wayne Dropulich of the Sports Party in Western Australia on a primary vote of 0.2%, Ricky Muir of the Motoring Enthusiasts Party in Victoria on a primary vote of 0.5% and Bob Day of the Family First Party on a primary vote of 3.8% in South Australia. However, the Western Australian result was later declared void (for unrelated reasons), necessitating a further election at which the Sports Party candidate was unsuccessful. The fifth Senators in the other States were Dio Wang in Western Australia, Glenn Lazarus in Queensland and Jacqui Lambie in Tasmania, all from the Palmer United Party, and David Leyonhjelm of the Liberal Democratic Party elected with a primary vote of 9.5% in New South Wales. These last four were not part of the MPA.
Muir's primary vote was 0.5% and achieved the 14.3% quota from 23 "above the line" party preferences: Bank Reform Party, Australian Fishing and Lifestyle Party, HEMP Party, Shooters and Fishers, Australian Stable Population Party, Senator Online, Building Australia Party, Family First Party, Bullet Train For Australia, Rise Up Australia Party, No Carbon Tax Climate Sceptics, Citizens Electoral Council, Palmer United Party, Democratic Labour Party, Katter's Australian Party, Socialist Equality Party, Australian Sex Party, Australian Voice Party, Wikileaks Party, Drug Law Reform, Stop CSG, Animal Justice Party, and the Australian Independents Party.
Day's primary vote was 3.8% (down 0.3% since the previous election), and achieved the 14.3% quota from 19 "above the line" party preferences: Australian Independents Party, Australian Stable Population Party, Liberal Democratic Party, Smokers' Rights Party, No Carbon Tax Climate Sceptics, Building Australia Party, Rise Up Australia Party, Katter's Australian Party, One Nation, Australian Fishing and Lifestyle Party, Australian Christians, Shooters and Fishers, Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party, Democratic Labour Party, Animal Justice Party, Australian Greens, Palmer United Party, HEMP Party, Australian Labor Party.
Druery also helped the Shooters and Fishers Party, Family First Party and the Fishing and Lifestyle Party. After the 2013 federal election Druery was hired by the newly elected Motor Enthusiast Party Senator Ricky Muir as Chief of Staff, but later parted company with Muir.
2017 Western Australian preference deal
Voting for the Western Australian Legislative Council uses group voting tickets. At the 2017 Western Australian state election, five parties participated in a set of preference deals orchestrated by Glenn Druery. The parties were Family First, Fluoride Free WA, Liberal Democrats, Flux the System and the Daylight Saving Party. The deals were arranged so that the ticket votes for these five parties would roll up to a different party in each region. At the election only the Liberal Democrat candidate, Aaron Stonehouse, with 1.77% of primary votes was elected with MPA preferences.
|Party||Current member of Alliance||Currently registered party||Candidate elected to Federal Parliament||Candidate elected to State Parliament||Notes|
|Animal Justice Party||Yes||Yes||No||NSW 2015: 1|
|Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party||No||No||2013: 1||No|
|Australian Sex Party||No||Yes (re-registered as Reason Party)||No||Victoria 2014: 1||Opted out of the alliance due to concerns for Druery's conflict of interest as a staffer for Derryn Hinch|
|Australian Sports Party||No||No||No||No||The party had one candidate elected in the 2013 federal election,
but due to unrelated irregularities there was a recount in WA where they were not successful
- Australia First Party
- Australian Christians
- Australian Stable Population Party
- Christian Democratic Party
- Natural Medicine Party
- Non-Custodial Parents Party
- One Nation
- Rise Up Australia Party
- Senator Online
- Shooters and Fishers Party
- Sustainable Australia
- Transport Matters Party
- Voluntary Euthanasia Party
- The Wikileaks Party
- Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party
- Australian Democrats
- Australian Fishing and Lifestyle Party
- Australian Independents
- Australian Protectionist Party
- Australian Voice Party
- Building Australia Party
- Bullet Train For Australia
- Drug Law Reform Australia
- Family First Party
- Mutual Party
- No Carbon Tax Climate Sceptics
- Stop CSG Party
- Uniting Australia Party
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- Tatura man Josh Hudson off to form own party
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- 2013 SA Senate results: AEC
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