A new political force – the Liberal Democrats (LDP)

Yesterday’s election result shows Australia has a new political force – the Liberal Democratic Party.

In only our second federal election (and the first under our proper name), the party gained over 2% of the Senate vote in NSW and Queensland and 1.5% in Victoria.  It is fifth highest in these states.

We also negotiated an excellent flow of preferences in NSW and will either win a seat or (more likely) be the last ones eliminated.

A couple of parties representing narrow interests did OK – the Sex Party, and Shooters and Fishers for example, but the LDP differs from these because it stands for individual choice and freedom, embracing the interests of all the “freedom” parties and combining them into a coherent philosophy.

Federal elections are tough for small parties. It’s nigh on impossible to win a seat in the HoR and a Senate spot is a long stretch.  We have every intention of keeping at it, but our immediate focus will be on building our brand by getting state divisions up and running. There are seats in State parliaments that are a lot easier to win than a seat in the Senate.

Our focus will also be on fund raising. We believe our vote would have been a great deal higher if every voter had known who we were and what we stood for.  Achieving that is simply a matter of money.

37 thoughts on “A new political force – the Liberal Democrats (LDP)

  1. The chance of a Senate seat, even if not the most likely outcome, is still an utterly phenomenal result deserving much praise.

    Even if the LDP is the last party eliminated, that is a great outcome considering we got almost no media coverage and that classical liberalism as an ideology is not very well known by most people.

  2. Shame. Incidentally, someone might want to think of dropping a line to The Australian and pointing out the name change. They’ve still got the LDP down as Liberty and Democracy Party. Personally I thought that was a pretty good name anyway, though being a pom I was used to a pretty illiberal and undemocratic party calling itself the Liberal Democrats. Still, if you could get The Australian to publish a correction it could be worth it just for another mention of the LDP. But if the website isn’t up again, maybe not. Just my 2¢.

  3. Stellar job guys… you outpolled the sex party, too – despite being new, I thought they might do better because of all the free publicity they received. I imagine the “Liberal Democrats” name helped.

  4. Results are finalised and we missed out by 20,000 votes 6th senator elected was Lee Rhiannon from the greens.

    That’s only the prediction of the ABC Senate calculator. All the pre-poll and postal votes are still to be counted. It will be a fortnight before the result is final.

  5. am i missing something but it seems like if you make up the 20,000 votes then labor gets eliminated instead of the ldp but all the labor preferences flow to the greens so the greens still get the last quota.

  6. Excellent work guys. I’ve been a silent member just paying the membership fee.

    There is always “politics” in the internal decision making, and controversy as we can’t present policies as a range of opinions.

    However you guys are doing something right.

    Well done.

  7. At this stage LDP Vic Senate share went from 0.1% in 2007 to 1.65% in 2010. Well done to all and thanks to those that helped me, Ross and all of our House of Reps candidates.

  8. Well done guys. I think the freedom / anti nanny state message is one that will catch on over time. The frrustrating thing is that a lot of poeple think that’s what the Greens are offering.

    I know it’s hardly a representative sample, but I was speaking to two mates on Friday night – one sort of centre left and another centre right. Both agreed that if there was a candidate or party that campaigned actively against the nanny state, they’d deserve to do well and would probably get their vote. Neither had ever heard of the LDP.

  9. Excellent work, and congratulations to all the candidates and campaign workers.

    For the day dreamers, consider this… if there was the 2010 vote with the 2007 preference flow, then the LDP would currently have a Senator. 🙂

  10. Neither had ever heard of the LDP.

    This remains our primary challenge. I think the antedote is fundamentally a function of time and staying consistent on message and brand. There is no silver bullet.

  11. You are probably right there Terje, I noticed at the Senate draw though, that Ron Boswell seemed to be rather fond of him. 🙂

    While I’m at it I would just like to thank my team, both Bobs, Josh, Gabriel, and Greg for all the hard work, we held our own with those NSW pricks people even with limited numbers, although I have to admit I have a lot to learn from them, especially Glen about Senate preferencing.

    I notice from the ABC website that Glen was a lot closer than he was last night. I doubt that he can win it, but it was that bloody close I felt the wind off it as it went past. Congratulations on a great effort Glen.

  12. Good work LDP! I’m a liberal voter but i love what you guys stand for. This might sound stupid and i know you’ve just gone through a name change, but i reckon if you could yourself “The Libertarian Party” I reckon you would catch more votes. Anyway, i want to see you guys grow, get rid of the damn greens!

  13. Got to say it wasn’t hard to divert a few votes to the LDP when talking with friends on election morning. Told them to check the LDP website before they vote, every one of them changed their preferences on the spot and said they have a new senate favourite

    Once the word spreads no doubt there will be more votes your way, many people have been waiting a long time for a libertarian party to arise

  14. Charlie: the best thing you can do is spread the word on libertarian conservative grass roots organisations and media.

    If we’re strong the Liberals are strong, but also will focus on worthwhile issues.

  15. Yobbo — the name isn’t up to me. I left the executive at the beginning of 2009, so I don’t even get a vote. But I think the performance at this election showed that “Liberal Democrats” is a good name. If I had a vote, I would vote to retain the name.

    Terje — I have to battle my demons first, and spend time in the jungle with Yoda. 🙂

  16. John, don’t talk about Barnaby like that. 🙂

    Actually those bastards pinched David Russell off us, now you, its becoming a bit of a habit. I was just talking to jc and Yobbo and we were feeling that Sukrit would be quite a man of the future for you guys. I am not a vindictive man and I really wouldn’t hold it against you if you were to strip us of the worlds greatest libertarian, the heart of our intellectual leadership. 🙂

  17. I think any doubt about the name “Liberal Democrats” has been resolved by this election. It’d be very hard to believe that a 30 fold increase in vote has been accomplished through brand awareness over 3 years.

    “Liberty and Democracy” may have doubled the 2007 results, maybe even tripled. But that name would not have us on 2% of the vote in Senate contests across the East Coast.

  18. Jim — I think Sukrit would do best forming a more radical libertarian party. In New Zealand they have ACT (a pragmatic, moderate libertarian party) and Libertarianz (a radical libertarian party that mocks ACT as being sell-outs).

    I think it is good to have both. ACT has a chance of getting seats (they currently have five) and Libertarianz gives voice to more radical ideas, but don’t really have a chance of winning. This makes more sense in Australia where we have preferential voting…

    As for David Russell… he’s the guy you can blame for my current adventure. I tried to lure him into the LDP about four years ago and failed. But we stayed in touch. And last year he worked some sort of Jedi mind trick on me.

  19. John, Gough Whitlam pulled the Jedi mind trick on me back in the early 70s and got me to join the Nationals but it wasn’t an enjoyable experience. I was about to leave for the Workers Party when it imploded and the PP formed out of the wreckage. Good luck is about all I can say other than to suggest doing a course in dealing with frustration. 🙂

    I have always favoured the idea of the ‘pure’ guys keeping apart and forming their own party or think tank for those who cannot bear the thought of moderating our ideas to the point where we are electable. My personal feeling is that we are in the right spot at the moment with a philosophy of around classical liberalism. Its not a hard sell, its a hell of an improvement on anything we have in the current political spectrum, and I think its where we can take the population without too much resistance.

    I am happy to have the philosophical base behind us, in fact I am inclined to think we need them. The problem I have with Sukrit is that he tends to be self righteously condescending in his posts. I normally bristle when he posts and usually stay away from them. On the last one I felt I had to respond when the call went out for jc to be banned. jc is a valuable member.

    To pull that stunt when we were in the thick of a campaign and not in the mood to cop shit from anyone was as stupid as I have seen.

  20. Shem – I think you could use membership growth as a proxy for general growth in support. The rest I would attribute to name.

  21. A great result for the LDP. Fills me with real confidence that something can be made of the Party.

    We just need to keep plugging away, increasing membership, increasing candidates. I’m going to pimp the LDP harder than I ever have before.

  22. Great job guys, you’re doing well so far for a small party! Maybe save up now for some TV advertisements for the next election. I believe we are becoming an overgoverned country and we are slowly heading for a total police/nanny state.

    One question: What are your policy regarding Airsoft guns and the sport? I know there is a (minor, but active) demand for these toys and the sport. Currently, they are illegal for people to possess and do not qualify as firearms since they have no “legitimate purposes” and look “military style”.

  23. Legalising Airsoft guns is a hobby-horse of LDP President, Peter Whelan.

    You really don’t need to ask what the LDP’s policy is on many issues. We oppose most restrictions on individuals unless somebody else is harmed.

  24. No matter who will win a government?

    Hung parliament result the fact people wanted fairer live resources supported

    “Health Olympic Australia” is a nationally and international significant movement in the 21 century “knowledge economy” in “Health Economy Gold Rush”:

    ● By pass all economy in human history that benefit to every habitant on earth;

    ● All habitant must to face either lost, or to win;

    ● The dead lock situation either lost health supply, or getting enough supply to win the battle of health demands in health rebuilding in her/his own right efforts to achieve wealth creation.

    There are at least five economic productivity outcomes will resulting significant GDP progressing from a “Health Olympic Australia” as follow:

    1. Reductions in Australian Health Workforce cost;

    2. Reduction in Healthcare cost;

    3. Reduction in lost productivity cost;

    4. Increase from agriculture outcome;

    5. Increase from “Health Olympic Australia” creation in goods/products exportation.

    Ma kee wai
    (Member of Inventor Association Queensland since 1993)

  25. Ma Kee Wai, the only thing I want from any government is strong patent protection, so us would-be inventors can get rich!

  26. What Australia hung parliament demonstrating deep in voter’s heart?

    Australia citizens now enter a very challenging political era for 70 years in the 2010 federal election, many reforms are demanding by voters are looking for a change with anger to share fairer resources supplied lives from the first term of government?

    Voters handed down their decisive votes during election time are looking for an efficient, effective and economically run government. A high transparency in less mistaken caused processing under no discriminately enforced services government. A long term wealth creative vision with fast action moving forward progressing resulting value add to voters benefits in each term of governing.

    Voters are crying for action right now to have improved resources support lives that suppose lead by a government in the following eight commitments:

    1. What vision of prosperity voters seen?
    2. Why action not enough in the past 3 years?
    3. How many election promises has been fulfilled?
    4. Where productivity motivation to voters?
    5. What materials to speed up election promises processing?
    6. Why some election promises in powerless process?
    7. How far transparency in each department service voters wanted?
    8. Where prioritized direction to empowerment the nation?

  27. 1. What time bombs will rock Australia democratic society?

    The Australia historical hung parliament demonstrated the big gap of inequality society between the small educated elite groups who get highest pay by talk feast used mouth work controlling live essential resources of the country in every social platforms against the biggest less educated groups who get lowest pay by hands work squeezed by discriminative policies that sucking live blood from poor/less wealth off?

    Voters’ voices do not hear?
    Voters’ pains do not ease?
    Voters’ cries do not care?

    1. Poverty will not be phase out if no fairer resources to share;
    2. Illness will not be reducing if no preventive measurement in real action;
    3. Agriculture will not be revitalize if urbanization continuing its path;
    4. Housing affordability will not be reach for young generation if government continues cashing from young generation debt by eating out the whole cake of education export revenue without plough back;
    5. Manufacture industry will shrink smaller and smaller if no new elements there to power up to survive;
    6. Employability will not in the sustainable mode for so long as manufacture and agriculture not going to boost.

    Ma kee wai
    (Member of Inventor Association Queensland since 1993)

Comments are closed.