Media Release: 15th July 2010 ACT Democrats announce 2010 No. 1 Senate candidate

ACT Democrats 2010

Media Release: 15th July 2010

ACT Democrats announce 2010 No. 1 Senate candidate

The Australian Democrats in the ACT today announced their No. 1 Senate candidate for the 2010 Federal election.

The No. 1 Senate candidate is Darren Churchill.  Darren is President of the ACT Democrats and stood as a candidate in the 2008 ACT Legislative Assembly elections and for the seat of Fraser in the 2007 federal election. He has lived most of his life in the Canberra region. He has worked as a secondary teacher, in the music industry and is now a casual relief teacher and occasional fitness instructor. Darren’s main policy interests are sensible Economic policy, Human Rights and Civil Liberties, and policies that give ordinary people a “fair go.”

Darren was endorsed late last year by a party ballot, in the biggest voter turnout for some time. Darren Churchill (ACT) joins Roger Howe (Victoria) as the first two endorsed Australian Democrats Senate candidates.

The ACT Democrats are currently pre-selecting their No. 2 Senate candidate and other Divisions are expected to announce their candidates shortly.

“The Australian Democrats are ready for the challenge and believe voters are also ready for a change away from the unworkable obstructionism that currently exists in the Federal Parliament, and want to restore the ‘balance of reason’(1) in the Senate!” declared Darren Churchill

“We want to work with whoever is in government to ensure good legislative outcomes and fair legislation.” said Darren. “The Australian Democrats have 31 years of federal parliamentary experience to draw on. We are the natural party of the crossbenches, the negotiators – we are a party of the possible, not the party of “No!””

The Australian Democrats Senate candidates have at time performed quite well in the ACT. Norm Sanders (1990) and Rick Farley (1998) were both strong candidates. Before that, John Gorton was an independent candidate in 1975 backed by both the Australian Democrats predecessor parties, the Australia Party and the Liberal Movement.(2)

“It is a great honour and privilege to follow in the footsteps of some great Australian Democrats and my hero Sir John Gorton. These were people of the progressive centre, who were looking to the future – a better, fairer future. If elected as an Australian Democrats Senator for the ACT, I will continue the Party’s process of working for good legislative outcomes, specifically in policy areas that benefit Canberra and Canberrans and the Jervis Bay Territory.” Darren concluded.

Darren Churchill

Australian Democrats Senate Candidate for the ACT

Tel: 0412 196 473

(1) The ‘balance of reason’ was a term coined by Australian Democrats founder, Don Chipp to show that holding the ‘balance’ in the Senate is more than just about exercising a ‘balance of power.’

(2) In 1977, the Australia Party and the remnants of the Liberal Movement (the New LM) merged to become the Australian Democrats. They had approached John Gorton in 1974 to lead them, eventually finding Don Chipp in May 1977.

Candidate for the Senate

Darren Churchill

Darren Churchill, 45, has lived most of his life in the Canberra region. Originally from Goulburn, he now lives in Kaleen. Darren has a Bachelor of Economics from the University of Newcastle and a Graduate Diploma in Education from the University of Wollongong. He has taught in secondary schools in both NSW and the ACT and is a registered relief teacher.

Darren has also worked in the music industry doing sound and lighting, and in the early 1990s was a band manager. Currently, Darren also works casually as a group fitness instructor and fitness consultant. As a Christian (Anglo-Catholic), he has strong views on human rights, equality, social justice and inclusiveness. In the long tradition of the Australian Democrats, he stands with the voiceless the marginalised and the oppressed in the fight for justice and equality.

Darren is a vegetarian and is greatly concerned about animal welfare and food labelling. He was active as a volunteer in the campaign to reinstate South Sydney Rabbitohs to the NRL, and was active in the Canberra Cosmos and Belconnen Blue Devils Supporters Groups. He supports the proposal for an A-League team for Canberra.

Darren has been outspoken on matters of privacy, civil liberties and drug law reform.

Darren stands for getting the balance right in legislative decisions. The result needs to be the right mix for the environment, the economy and social justice. He is a straight talker who represents the core Australian Democrats values of honesty, tolerance and compassion. If elected, Darren will would give: support for the construction of a Very Fast Train system to link Canberra to Sydney and Melbourne; support for low carbon energy sources to give us a clean reliable sustainable energy future, and support for increased investment in high tech export products from the ANU, the CSIRO and local manufacturers, to help give Australia an alternative to agriculture and mining exports.

Darren will bring the Australian Democrats’ 31 years of legislative experience back to the Senate, continue the same process of working for good legislative outcomes and offer practical, balanced solutions from the progressive centre.

Darren Churchill

Tel: 0412 196 473

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