Assange electoral boost
Julian Assange.Julian Assange’s plans to run as a Senate candidate have
taken a step forward with his successful enrolment on the federal and
state electoral rolls in Victoria.
February 25, 2013 - 2:58PM
Contrary to the expectations of a number of political commentators, the Australian Electoral Commission has accepted Mr Assange’s enrollment as an eligible overseas elector in the Victorian federal seat of Isaacs, the seat of Labor Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus.
The WikiLeaks publisher plans to run for the Senate in Victoria as the lead candidate of a newly formed WikiLeaks Party at the September 14 federal election.
The new party, which is not yet registered with the Australian Electoral Commission, has an initial ten member national council comprised of close associates of Mr Assange and pro-WikiLeaks activists.
In addition to Mr Assange, the party’s national council compises Mr Assange’s father, Sydney architect John Shipton; one of the original founders of WikiLeaks, Melbourne mathematician Daniel Mathews; Australian National University physicist Niraj Lal; Maitland lawyer, political activist and former independent candidate Kellie Tranter;
Sydney based digital archivist and freedom of information activist Cassie Findlay; Gold Coast based information technology blogger Gary Lord; Dandenong women’s refuge manager and WikiLeaks Australian Citizens Alliance co-convener Kaz Cochrane; indigenous education consultant and activist Luke Pearson; and Oman Todd, cyber security and social media consultant with the Sea Shepherd anti-whaling group.
It is understood Ms Tranter is likely to be the WikiLeaks Party’s Senate candidate in NSW.
Mr Assange currently resides in the Embassy of Ecuador in London where he has been granted political asylum on the grounds he is at risk of extradition to the United States to face conspiracy or other charges arising from WikiLeaks obtaining thousands of secret US military and diplomatic reports leaked by US Army soldier Bradley Manning.
Swedish prosecutors wish to extradite Mr Assange to have him questioned in Stockholm in relation to sexual assault allegations by two women. Mr Assange claims that extradition to Sweden would facilitate his eventual extradition to the United States.
Mr Assange has indicated that if elected and unable to return to Australia to take up a seat in the Senate, a WikiLeaks Party nominee would fill the vacancy.
Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/political-news/assange-electoral-boost-20130225-2f1dw.html#ixzz2LsmpAgKM