In dark times, some good news beckons at tomorrow’s ALP state conference in Victoria. (It’s at Moonee Valley racecourse from 9am – all ALP members can attend.) The conference seems poised to give ordinary party members 50 per cent of the vote to preselect Labor’s Senate candidates.
This is a vital reform that will strengthen party democracy and the quality of Labor Senate candidates. It will give rank-and-file members a chance to assess the policies and personalities of the people we work for and who work for us. Over the past few months Open Labor has worked hard for this change in partnership with Local Labor and the Independents. Twenty-six branches have voted for the reform since the three groups held a well-attended public meeting on the issue last month. The branches are inner city, suburban and country (see list below) – the demand for change spans the party. So if you can, come to the conference tomorrow and support it.
While you’re there, the Chifley Research Centre – Labor’s think tank – is running an event on Inclusive Prosperity: why inequality matters and what to do about it. Michael Cooney, Linda White and Godfrey Moase will speak about why our economy is becoming unequal, why that threatens future growth, and how the political system and Labor should respond. The event takes place at 2pm at the State Conference at Moonee Valley.
Here are the branches who are calling to increase the rank and file vote in Senate preselections: