|National convenor||Doug Cameron|
|Student wing||Young Labor Left|
|Youth wing||Young Labor Left|
|Political position||Centre-left to Left-wing|
|House of Representatives||
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The Labor Left (also known as the Socialist Left and Progressive Left) is an organised social democratic faction of the Australian Labor Party. It competes with the more conservative Labor Right faction.
The Labor Left operates autonomously in each State and Territory, and organises as a broad alliance at the national level. Its policy positions include party democratisation, economic interventionism, progressive tax reform, and refugee rights.
Most political parties contain informal factions of members who work towards common goals. However the Australian Labor Party is noted for having highly structured and organised factions across the ideological spectrum.
The Labor Left is a membership-based organisation which has internal office bearers, publications, and policy positions. The faction coordinates political activity and policy development across different hierarchical levels and organisational components of the party, negotiates with other factions on political strategy and policy, and uses party processes to try and defeat other groups if consensus cannot be reached.
Many Members of Parliament and trade union leaders are formally aligned with the Left and Right factions, and party positions and ministerial allocations are negotiated and divided between the factions based on the proportion of Labor caucus aligned with that faction.
|This section requires expansion with: sources on the modern history of the Left, and its history outside of Victoria and New South Wales. (January 2016)|
Labor Party split of 1955
The modern Labor Left emerged from the Labor Party split of 1955, in which anti-Communist activists associated with B. A. Santamaria and the Industrial Groups formed the Democratic Labor Party while left-wing parliamentarians and unions loyal to H. V. Evatt and Arthur Calwell remained in the Australian Labor Party.
The split played out differently across the country, with anti-Communists leaving the party in Victoria and Queensland but remaining within in most other states. This created a power vacuum which allowed the Left to take control of the Federal Executive and Victorian state branch, while its opponents were preserved elsewhere.
From 1965 organised internal groups emerged to challenge the control of the Left, supported by figures such as John Button and Gough Whitlam. After the Victorian branch lost the 1970 state election in the midst of a public dispute with Whitlam over state aid for private schools, the South Australian Left, led by Clyde Cameron, and New South Wales Left, led by Arthur Gietzelt, agreed to support an intervention which saw the Victorian state branch abolished and subsequently reconstructed without Left control.
Labor Left factions from all jurisdictions
|Jurisdiction||Major Left Grouping||State Conference Floor Percentage 2015||Majority|
|New South Wales||NSW Socialist Left||40%[unreliable source?]||No|
|Victoria||Victorian Socialist Left||42%[unreliable source?]||Stability Pact with Centre Unity and NUW|
|Western Australia||Broad Left||65%[unreliable source?]||Yes|
|Queensland||The Left||50%[unreliable source?]||Yes (supported by Old Guard)|
|ACT||Left Caucus||51%[unreliable source?]||Yes|
|South Australia||Progressive Left Unions and Sub-Branches (PLUS)||35%[unreliable source?]||No|
|Tasmania||Broad Left||70%[unreliable source?]||Yes|
|Northern Territory||The Left||60%[unreliable source?]||Yes|
|National||National Left||48%[unreliable source?]||No|
- "Labor faction chiefs lose control, leaving way open for left-wing issues such as gay marriage". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2015-12-31.
- Leigh, Andrew (9 June 2010). "Factions and Fractions: A Case Study of Power Politics in the Australian Labor Party". Australian Journal of Political Science. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
- Parkin, Andrew (1983). Machine Politics in the Australian Labor Party. George Allen and Unwin. p. 23.
- Faulkner, Xandra (June 2006). "The Spirit of Accommodation:The Influence of the ALP's National Factions on Party Policy, 1996-2004" (PDF). Griffith University. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
- Oakley, Corey (Winter 2012). "The rise and fall of the ALP left in Victoria and NSW". Marxist Left Review. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
- "agitate, educate, opine" (2 September 2014). "What is the factional breakdown at Labor Conferences?". Retrieved 22 January 2016.
- Barcan, Alan, (1960) The socialist left in Australia 1949-1959 Sydney : Australian Political Studies Association (Occasional monograph (Australian Political Studies Association)) no. 2.
- Leigh, Andrew, (2000) Factions and Fractions: A Case Study of Power Politics in the Australian Labor Party Australian Journal of Political Science, 2000, volume 35, issue 3, pages 427-448
- Bongiorno, Frank (2014) The New South Wales Left at 60 NSW Left Website