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During the election night commentary that was broadcast on the TV during the performance of Don's Party that we saw on Saturday, there was a reference to the Australia Party.

The commentary was saying that the Liberal Party were expected to pick up preferences in the 1969 election from the DLP and the Australia Party.

I had a clear idea who the DLP were, but I was unsure about who the Australia Party were. I've done some research and it turns out that my guess was correct.

DLP (Democratic Labor Party)

I had assumed that everybody in Australia knows who the DLP were. But, following the recent election of a DLP candidate to the Victorian Legislative Council, I'm no longer sure whether this was a conscious decision or an accident.  (The Age article linked above refers to two DLP candidates being elected in the 2006 elections. It was later found that only one had been elected.)

The DLP was the group that split from the ALP in the 1950s over their distaste for communism. The DLP was strongly aligned with the Roman Catholic Church. By the late 1960s they were to the right of the Liberals on most issues, and eventually ended up somewhere on the right of Attila the Hun. (Actually: How did Attila pick up his reputation of being representative of the extreme, extreme right wing?)

Australia Party

A group of left aligned Liberals who split from the party to form a centrist party. They were opposed to the Vietnam War and conscription. They ran first in the 1969 elections. When the Australian Democrats formed, the Australia Party joined it in 1977, giving the Democrats some of their initial membership.

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Anthony Holmes January 21st, 2007 06:29:23 PM

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