Archive for the ‘ACT Election 2008 Campaign’ Category

Reflections on the ACT 2008 Election

30/10/2008

Looking to the Future (Thoughts on the ACT Election and Beyond)
by Darren Churchill (ACT Democrats President)

Well, another campaign behind us. Sadly, not much of a result to show for it. Unfortunately, neither Greg nor I were successful in gaining a seat in the Legislative Assembly.

Despite the result, we did run good campaigns. We covered a lot of ground with a small and dedicated band of members and volunteers. We obviously don’t have the resources (human or otherwise) of the big parties. But we did put in an incredible amount of work and well done to everyone.

I am incredibly impressed at how good the media were (on the whole) to us. Minor parties often have trouble getting coverage. But we certainly got our share. The last two weeks of the campaign tended to go back to the print media picking favourites or trying to make their own opinion polls a reality. But with ABC Radio coming on board in the last weeks we were able to keep the media momentum going.

Elections ACT were wonderful in their professionalism, advice and assistance before and during the election period. And in their professional and proper conduct of the election. The respect and courtesy shown to our candidates is much appreciated, as is their commitment to the electoral process.

As you are well aware, our party faced some difficult obstacles to our participation in this years Election. The lack of a party column is what, I think, hurt us badly. We were ungrouped, so our vote reflected a typical ungrouped party’s vote. It’s now time to ensure that this doesn’t happen again.

As of midnight last Saturday night, we can re-register without any need to rename ourselves or become something we are not. What we need is to build our membership up to strong levels again. We need 100 members to re-register. That is achievable. But what we need to do is put ourselves well above the 100 required members.

All this takes is for each and every member to recruit 1 or 2 friends, family members, colleagues or other to the Australian Democrats. Remember, your membership is your right to vote in party decision and policy. It is your ticket to being able to “make a difference.”

If you live in the ACT, please join, renew or re-join. If you don’t live in the ACT, encourage your friends, family, etc who do live here to do the same.

The campaign here couldn’t have been run without the effort put in by a number of people. I am incredibly grateful to those who gave their time, talents, money, and energy to the campaign effort. The nominators, letterboxers, shopping-centre stall staffers, speech writers, questionnaire answerers, website team, materials designers, corflute displayers, and those who gave me tip-offs about forums we might otherwise have missed, etc. I hope I haven’t left any group out. Our small band did the work the bigger parties do with hundreds and we still managed to maintain a visible presence in the campaign.

We raised good issues, pushed the Democrats message and were a part of the whole campaign. Even if our vote didn’t reflect the interest that was shown to us.

The final composition of the new assembly is now known. Congratulations to the parties elected and especially to the new members.

We don’t (at this stage) know which party it will be who forms the next government. No party will have a majority – and to that end we should be glad of the result, even though there will be no Democrats in this Assembly.

I learned a lot from the campaign. I’ve made some new friends and some new contacts. I do look forward to working with the new MLA’s and building our contacts with the Assembly and the community.

Communication and building new links with the community are essential. So, they are also part of the rebuilding of our “new” Australian Democrats.

We are the same party with our commitment to our 23 objectives and our history of over 31 years of honesty, tolerance and compassion. But we are “new” in the sense that we embrace the future and look forward with a positive focus and new energy as the great “progressive” party we are.

It’s now time to move into the future. Lets put ourselves in a good, strong position now, so in time we can contest the elections from a position of greater strength. And further down the track, we can look back and say: “We’re still going strong. And we still “keep the bastards honest!'”

Darren Churchill
President
Australian Democrats (ACT Division)
darren.churchill@act.democrats.org.au
0412 196 473

(Darren Churchill (Ginninderra) and Greg Tannahill (Molonglo) represented the Australian Democrats in the 2008 ACT election.)

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A speech by Darren Churchill, ACT Democrats president, at the Declaration of the Poll, ACT Legislative Assembly, 29 October 2008.

29/10/2008

A speech by Darren Churchill, ACT Democrats president, at the Declaration of the Poll, ACT Legislative Assembly, 29 October 2008.

I’d like to thank Elections ACT for their professionalism, advice and assistance before and during the election period. And for their professional and proper conduct of the election. The respect and courtesy shown to our candidates is much appreciated, as is their commitment to the electoral process.

As you are well aware, my party faced some difficult obstacles to our participation in this year’s Election. The lack of a party column is what, I think, hurt us badly. We were ungrouped, so our vote reflected a typical ungrouped party’s vote.

It’s now time to ensure that this doesn’t happen again. As of midnight on Election night, we can re-register without any need to rename ourselves or become something we are not.

Despite the result, we did run good a campaign. We covered a lot of ground with a small and dedicated band of members and volunteers.

I am incredibly impressed at how good the media were (on the whole) to us. Minor parties often have trouble getting coverage. But we certainly got our share.

We raised good issues, pushed the Democrats message and were a part of the whole campaign. Even if our vote didn’t reflect the interest that was shown to us.

The final composition of the new assembly is now known. Congratulations to the parties elected and especially to the new members.

We don’t know which party it will be who forms the next government. No party will have a majority – and to that end we should be glad of the result, even though there will be no Democrats in this Assembly.

It’s time to move into the future now. There are a number of new opportunities to explore as I take my party, the Australian Democrats, into that future and embrace it and look forward with a positive focus and new energy as the great “progressive” party we are.

In four years time we intend contest the next election, from a position of greater strength. And further down the track, we will be able to look back and say: “We’re still going strong. And we still “keep the bastards honest!'”

My sincere thanks once again to everyone. And congratulations to the new MLAs.

Thank you.

MEDIA ALERT: Declaration of the Poll for the ACT Legislative Assembly: Darren Churchill, ACT Democrats President

28/10/2008

DARREN CHURCHILL
ACT Democrats President

MEDIA ALERT:
Declaration of the Poll for the ACT Legislative Assembly:
Darren Churchill, ACT Democrats President

Darren Churchill, ACT Democrats president will address the people present at the Declaration of the Poll, on behalf of the ACT Democrats.

Mr Churchill will thank Elections Act for a well run election, congratulate new members of the Assembly; and comment on the future directions of the ACT Democrats.

Mr Churchill will be available for comment and interview by media, immediately after the Declaration and speeches.

Darren Churchill
ACT Democrats President
darren.churchill@act.democrats.org.au
Tel: 0412 196 473

Media Release: 23 October, 2008: Democrats to fight on. Rebuild, re-register and reorganise!

24/10/2008

DARREN CHURCHILL
ACT Democrats President

Democrats to fight on. Rebuild, re-register and reorganise!

The ACT Democrats are vowing to keep fighting the good fight after last Saturday’s election. Despite a poor showing at the ballot-box the party has committed to continue to work toward 2012.

Democrats president, Darren Churchill said “As of midnight last Saturday, we can re-register as the Australian Democrats.”

“The lack of a party column in this year’s election is what, I think, hurt us badly. We were ungrouped, so our vote reflected a typical ungrouped party’s vote. It’s now time to ensure that this doesn’t happen again.”

Under Section 99 of the ACT Electoral Act which states that:
“(1) If the registration of a registered party (the cancelled party) is
cancelled-
(a) the cancelled party; or
(b) another political party that has a name that so nearly resembles
the name of the cancelled party that it is likely to be confused
with or mistaken for the cancelled party;
is ineligible for registration until after the next general election after
the cancellation.
(2) In this section:
name includes an abbreviation of the name”
the ACT Democrats were prevented from re-registering under their own name after losing registration in September last year.

“Now we are in a new Electoral cycle and it’s time to prepare for re-registration.” Mr Churchill announced.

“We still think there are some serious flaws in the Electoral Act which need to be addressed to make elections fairer for minor parties and independents. We hope that the new Assembly will look address these matters. I am happy to consult with any of the new MLA’s on what needs to be done to make future elections more democratic.”

The counting to determine the final composition of the new assembly is still being finalised.

“We do know that it will be some combination of Labor, Liberal and Green. None of them will have a majority – and to that end we should be glad of the result, even though there will be no Democrats in this Assembly” said Mr Churchill. “As always, the Democrats will be keeping a close eye on the new Assembly to make sure that election promises are not broken and that new, unproven Assembly acts as a true representative of all Canberrans.”

“The ACT Democrats campaigned strongly on issues of sustainable planning, transport, affordable housing, community consultation, and government accountability (keeping the bastards honest). These issues must not be abandoned now that the election is over. We will continue to push for action on the things we have campaigned for.”

“The Democrats will also now focus on continuing to build our membership base, forging strong links with the new Assembly, and networking with community groups. The Democratic process doesn’t stop just because the election is over. We continue our fight to keep the new bastards honest!” Mr Churchill concluded.

Mr Churchill is available for comment (details below):

Darren Churchill
ACT Democrats President
Candidate for Ginninderra
darren.churchill@act.democrats.org.au
Tel: 0412 196 473

21/10/2008

Post Election Thanks:

Many thanks to the people of GINNINDERRA who voted for me and to those who wished me well.

Many thanks also to my supporters and helpers, both members of the Australian Democrats and others.

We fought a good campaign and got quite a bit of media interest. And that’s not easy to do when flawed electoral legislation means you have to contest the election from the Ungrouped column.

My result was typically what you might expect from an Ungrouped candidate.  The lack of a party column meant no party vote.  And finding the ACT Democrats candidates was therefore that much more difficult without our own column.

Thanks again for your effort and support and the faith of those who voted for me.

Darren Churchill

As the elected member for GINNINDERRA I will:

17/10/2008

  • balance economic policy with social and environmental considerations. Good economic management is about getting the balance right. It’s a “triple bottom line;”
  • bring a “balance of responsibility” to the Assembly
  • vote with my conscience on all issues;
  • act to implement neighbourhood consultation groups;
  • act to implement planning authorities that people can have confidence in; and stop “opportunistic profiteering”;
  • maintain the traditional Democrats principle of supporting legislation that is fair and equitable and seek to amend and make fairer that which is not (sensible negotiation);
  • support social spending programmes for affordable housing and quality public transport
  • ensure that whichever party forms the government, they are held accountable for their actions;
  • support industries that create jobs and are kind to the environment,
  • encourage sensible use and management of urban water;
  • encourage and support environmentally sustainable practices in renewable energy and energy efficiency.
  • Keep the Bastards Honest!

You can Create a Fairer Canberra

17/10/2008

Tired of Labor?

Never vote Liberal?

There IS an alternative:

Vote DEMOCRATS!

Darren CHURCHILL (Ginninderra) and Greg TANNAHILL (Molonglo)

For honesty, tolerance and compassion.

Choose Common Sense

A.C.T. DEMOCRATS!!!

You CAN change the world!

VOTE DEMOCRATS!!!

Give a Damn!

and

in the A.C.T Election on October 18

Keep the Bastards Honest!

“We Are Still Here – And We’ve Been Busy”, say Democrats.

17/10/2008

DARREN CHURCHILL
ACT Democrats President
Candidate for Ginninderra

“We Are Still Here – And We’ve Been Busy”, say Democrats

“We are still here and we’ve been busy during the campaign, says ACT Democrats president and Ungrouped candidate for Ginninderra, Darren Churchill

“The Democrats have been extremely active during this campaign. Greg Tannahill (Molonglo) and I have been out and about with some serious “grass-roots” campaigning. We’ve walked the streets, attended shopping centres, letterboxed, doorknocked. All the usual stuff the big parties do.”

“I’ve announced a number of our policies, which with the exception of one or two have been overlooked by the Media. But I’ll just draw people’s attention to the fact that all our policies are up on our Website: http://www.act.democrats.org.au . So, I encourage people to have a look. Our speeches are there too.” said Mr Churchill

“That’s right! The ACT Democrats have a full range of policies and they are published for people to see. That is in contrast to some of the others who we still don’t know what they stand for.”

“So, have a look. Think about the issues and consider voting for Greg Tannahill in Molonglo and Darren Churchill in Ginninderra.”

“Remember, only the Democrats are not beholden to vested interest groups. We are not in the pockets of big business, big unions, big environmental extremists or big Jim Murphy.” said Mr Churchill. “Only Greg Tannahill and Darren Churchill can guarantee to vote according to conscience on all issues.”

“We have a wide range of policies. It’s just a shame we can’t get the attention the big parties get!” Mr Churchill concluded.

Mr Churchill and Mr Tannahill are out and about in their electorates this afternoon and can be contacted for interviews or to discuss policies and election matters on 0412 196 473 (Darren Churchill) and 0400 389 343 (Greg Tannahill).

Darren Churchill
ACT Democrats President
Candidate for Ginninderra
darren.churchill@act.democrats.org.au
Tel: 0412 196 473

Who Can You Trust? “Democrats will Guarantee an Impartial Cross-bench.” says Churchill

16/10/2008

DARREN CHURCHILL
ACT Democrats President
Candidate for Ginninderra

Who Can You Trust? “Democrats will Guarantee an Impartial Cross-bench.” says Churchill

“Voters are sick and tired of the dominance and dictatorial behaviour of majority government. But they also want a cross-bench that contains sensible negotiators who can maintain their independence.”

With the likelihood of the Greens siding with Labor. And the inexperienced other parties and so-called independents backed by the Canberra Business Club. The ACT Democrats are emerging as the people who can return fairness and balance to the ACT Assembly.

“Only the Democrats are not beholden to vested interest groups. We are not in the pockets of big business, big unions, big environmental extremists or big Jim Murphy.” said Mr Churchill. “Only Greg Tannahill and Darren Churchill can guarantee to vote according to conscience on all issues.

“I would urge people to visit our web-page at http://www.act.democrats.org.au and see for themselves what we have been doing and saying in recent times. Our speeches and policies are up there and so are links to our blogs.”

“A vote for the Democrats is a vote for stability, accountability and certainty. A vote for the Democrats is a vote for a fair and independent cross-bench. A vote for the Democrats is a vote for consultation, sensible negotiation and good legislative outcomes, regardless of who forms government.”

The Democrats will guarantee an impartial cross-bench. A vote for Greg Tannahill (Molonglo): Ungrouped column; and Darren Churchill (Ginninderra): U2 ungrouped column; is a vote for common sense. As Democrats we will ‘keep the bastards honest!’ “You can depend on us!

“Voters can be assured that there will be no nasty surprises when they vote Democrat – unlike the current lottery that looks like confronting people when they have to fill out their Legislative Assembly ballot paper on October 18.”

“People should be asking themselves- ‘Are these candidates really free from vested interest groups? Will they maintain their impartiality? And out of those candidates, who can you trust?’ Mr Churchill concluded.

Darren Churchill
ACT Democrats President
Candidate for Ginninderra
darren.churchill@act.democrats.org.au
Tel: 0412 196 473

As the elected member for GINNINDERRA I will:

16/10/2008

  • balance economic policy with social and environmental considerations. Good economic management is about getting the balance right. It’s a “triple bottom line;”
  • bring a “balance of responsibility” to the Assembly
  • vote with my conscience on all issues;
  • act to implement neighbourhood consultation groups;
  • act to implement planning authorities that people can have confidence in; and stop “opportunistic profiteering”;
  • maintain the traditional Democrats principle of supporting legislation that is fair and equitable and seek to amend and make fairer that which is not (sensible negotiation);
  • support social spending programmes for affordable housing and quality public transport
  • ensure that whichever party forms the government, they are held accountable for their actions;
  • support industries that create jobs and are kind to the environment,
  • encourage sensible use and management of urban water;
  • encourage and support environmentally sustainable practices in renewable energy and energy efficiency.
  • Keep the Bastards Honest!