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Family First party open to discussing preference deals with all parties except Greens, as the two parties vie for Senate balance of power in Fed election

Posted by gmarkets on 3 September, 2007

Jeff Buchanan, lead candidate and campaign manager for Family First, said he believed the new Senate would have two Family First senators, five Greens, 32 Labor, 32 Liberal, four Nations and one Country Liberal Party senator, reported The Australian (31/7/2007, p.6). Family First gunning for Greens: Family First was currently represented in the Senate by Victorian Steve Fielding. Buchanan said the party would battle the Greens for the balance of power. “Any reasonable assessment would conclude the Coalition is going to struggle to hang on to its majority. It’s mathematically impossible for Labor to win control ,on its own, and there’s no polling or analysis around that says the Democrats are a chance of hanging on to their seats,” he told The Australian.

Family friendly with all, except Greens: Buchanan said the party would run candidates in 29 lower house seats and was open to discussing preference deals with all parties except the Greens. Buchanan said he was optimistic he would be elected in Queensland on preferences. “Clearly we’re chasing Senator Bartlett’s seat … 1 don’t think we’re star-gazing; we’re being quite realistic,” he said.

FF eyes Qld as Nats and Libs split ticket: Buchanan said Queensland would be a key state in the election, where Family First had an opportunity to gain ground. Rank-and-file Nationals have voted against the wishes of John Howard and Nationals leader Mark Vaile, scrapping a historic deal to run a joint Liberal-Nationals ticket. Buchanan said Family First was already drawing support from disillusioned former Nationals members.

Business fear of Greens to help FF? He said business – including the construction and mining sectors – was also “more interested in Family First than ever before”. “They’re just very worried with the idea of the Greens having the balance of power,” Buchanan said.

The Australian, 31/7/2007, p. 6


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