Fraser Anning's new party name likely to face challenge from the Nationals

 smh.com.au  1/11/2019 3:47:59 AM 

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In similar past cases, the AEC has been lenient: the Liberal Party was unable to deny the Liberal Democratic Party from registering its name, and when the Democratic Labour Party asked to be referred to as Labour DLP, the Australian Labor Party's objection was refused.

A spokesman for the Conservative Nationals said voters would be able to tell the difference between it and the Nationals based on their behaviour.

“Given the performance of the current Nationals party leader and his support for the left-wing Turnbull and Morrison Liberal governments, it seems highly unlikely that anyone would confuse the Nationals with a conservative party," the spokesman said.

Senator Anning's road to the federal election was derailed by an "administrative error" which led to the party abandoning its registration efforts after the AEC had announced the move.

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By the time they were told the application had been revoked, the AEC had already, as required by law, taken out advertisements in major papers across Australia.

While managing to remove the notification from most major newspapers, the AEC failed to do so in the two Nine Entertainment-owned mastheads: the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.

The party's spokesman said it misstated its contact details in the original application, and that the application would go through next week.

According to its constitution, the Conservative Nationals endorse immigration "that gives preference to those best able to integrate", "traditional family values", "the right to own firearms", "citizens initiated referenda" and an "Australia first" foreign policy.

The constitution also sets up a youth wing, called the Young Conservative Nationalists.

Senator Pauline Hanson wished Senator Anning luck with his new party, saying voters should "see the sense" and vote One Nation to "have someone on the floor of Parliament who's got the guts to say what they're thinking".

Acting Opposition Leader Penny Wong put pressure on the Coalition to preference Senator Anning's party last.

"The real question is whether the Liberals and Nationals will preference him, as they have done with One Nation, or join Labor in putting extremists like him last."

The Liberal Party did not wish to comment.

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