NQ separatists announce state election plan
AN ALLIANCE of North Queensland separatists could potentially contest multiple seats in the upcoming state election- if they garner enough members.
The North Queensland State Alliance, fronted by Townsville-based constitutional lawyer Peter Raffles, has flagged that it was wants to run candidates in the October 2020 state election in every seat north of Rockhampton.
Mr Raffles said the alliance would first need to garner 500 members in order to register itself as a political party with the Electoral Commission of Queensland.
He said the group was "absolutely" confident of getting enough people on board to run candidates.
The central tenet of the North Queensland State Alliance is for the State Government to give the region a choice by setting up an independent commission to investigate whether a separate state is feasible, desirable, and what it would look like.
The alliance argues a separate state would provide North Queensland with equal representation in state politics and in the Federal senate. They also argue North Queensland would be better off economically, provide growth and opportunity and decentralisation that allows for better local decisions.
Mr Raffles also flagged that the North Queensland State Alliance, while not running any council candidates in the March 2020 local government election, would be running a very prominent campaign.
If the North Queensland State Alliance does become a political party, it won't be the only mob that supports splitting the Sunshine State.
Whitsunday MP Jason Costigan's recent political creation "NQ First" and Katter's Australian Party also support a separate state.
Asked if the potential creation of another North Queensland-based group could cannibalise the minor party vote, KAP State Leader Robbie Katter said "no one had ownership" of the minor party vote.
"So no one can begrudge people having a crack," he said.
""it would be enormously hypocritical for people with aligned interests in the minor parties to actively attack or undermine each other.
"If these sorts of people don't work together established minor parties, the majors will win and you're guaranteed a continuation of the status quo which everyone appears to be dissatisfied with."
Mr Raffles said the North Queensland State Alliance had just over a hundred members so far, and the membership drive was ramping up.