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Australia Government United Kingdom Politics

Julian Assange To Run For Australian Senate 207

New submitter bozman8 writes "Announced recently on social networking platform Twitter, Julian Assange has found a way to run for the Upper House of the Australian Senate, despite being detained under house arrest in Britain. Along with Julian's candidacy, WikiLeaks has announced that they are going to run a nominee against current Prime Minister Julia Gillard in her local electorate."
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Julian Assange To Run For Australian Senate

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  • Go Assange! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 18, 2012 @02:17AM (#39393761)

    Go Assange! I wonder if they would trust him with secret documents!

    • by MichaelSmith ( 789609 ) on Sunday March 18, 2012 @04:34AM (#39394055) Homepage Journal

      He already has them.

      • by Lennie ( 16154 )

        Atleast now he knows not to use the same private key for different purposes like last time.

      • And if anything, that should give him an advantage - No need to learn about all the hidden intricacies of what's going on when starting the job!

        Joking aside, it would be interesting to see whether this results in a more open government than before.
    • Re:Go Assange! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by fahrbot-bot ( 874524 ) on Sunday March 18, 2012 @02:40PM (#39396971)
      I'd be more interested to know if he won would he be eligible for Diplomatic Immunity; be able to leave Britain and prevent any extradition to Sweden or the U.S. while in office.
      • Re:Go Assange! (Score:4, Informative)

        by Pseudonym ( 62607 ) on Sunday March 18, 2012 @07:30PM (#39398773)

        No, because he isn't part of a diplomatic mission. What you're thinking of is that which is known as parliamentary privilege, parliamentary immunity or legislative immunity. In Commonwealth countries such as Australia, parliamentary privilege generally only extends to protection from slander or libel for statements made in the legislature. Legislators are not immune from criminal actions for the simple reason that all are equal under the law. This is pretty much the same as in the US.

        • I did not know that, thanks. Though I imagine extraditing a sitting Senator would be diplomatically problematic - especially on the weak cases against him in Sweden (for now) and the U.S.
    • This isn't doubles tennis. Two people of different nationalities rarely make appropriate running mates as they are both only eligible for government in different countries. That said, American politician King O'Malley had a great career in Australian politics after pretending he was from Canada and thus a subject of the crown, so there may be hope for them yet.
    • by mjwx ( 966435 )

      I'd vote for the pair.

      He was born in Australia, can he even run in the US presidential elections.

      In Australia that doesn't matter, our current PM was born in Wales and the opposition leader was born in England.

  • Clever (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    If elected he'll have immunity (or so I think, I don't know Australian law) and can be rid of the false charges against him (for a few years, anyway). Knowing Australia, though, I'd be surprised if they don't vote for Cthulhu instead.
    Australia, don't fuck this up.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 18, 2012 @02:58AM (#39393871)

    I live in the next electorate across from Ms Gillard's electorate, so I won't get the privilege of helping stir the pot... but if I could I'd definitely vote for anyone promising the level of transparency Wikileaks represents.

    The other important point here is that Julia has done a shameful job of supporting a high profile Australian in trouble, pretty much towing the pro USA line (Australia traditionally lives in the US of A's pocket) which means she hasn't acknowledged the important community service roll that whistle blower organisations such as Wikileaks fill in a open and honest democracy. Good luck to Julian, he's a national hero!

    • I'd move to fucking Werribee for a few months, just for the chance to vote her out of office and the Wikileaks candidate in!
    • by jonwil ( 467024 )

      As an Aussie I believe we need a government in this country that is no longer the lap dog of the Yanks and the vested interests they represent.

      We DON'T need American troops or facilities on Australian soil.
      We DON'T need an American spy base in the Australian outback.
      We DON'T need to keep signing up to us-lead "free-trade" agreements that are anything but free (the Australia-US Free Trade Agreement did NOTHING to open up US markets to Australian agricultural exports)
      We DON'T need to continue to spend money o

    • by guises ( 2423402 )
      The Australian government has been gunning for Wikileaks longer than the Americans, since the March 2009 leak of the Australian internet blacklist. It's no surprise that they're not sticking up for Assange.
  • Senate (Score:5, Informative)

    by deimtee ( 762122 ) on Sunday March 18, 2012 @03:01AM (#39393885) Journal
    I hope he runs in Vic. I'd vote for him.
    The senate has proportional voting.
    Everyone ranks all the candidates, then they start counting. As soon as a candidate has enough to get elected, any further votes move to the second preference. You can end up with some funny results if everyone puts the major party they don't like last.
    • OTH he would make a great celebrity candidate for the greens and with their organisation behind him, Assange might have a good chance of getting in.

    • Wait, so you're saying that who gets elected depends on the order in which the votes are tallied?

      • When you vote in Aus, you don't cast a single vote - you give a list of preferences. In the Senate, there are generally over 100 preferences to rank (if you chose to vote by individual) or 20 or so (if you choose to vote by party). I pretty much always but the major parties in the bottom few places in my preferences (also Greens and Communists - if there's a difference).

  • Remember pauline hanson?
    Yeah he's not that bad really, just a massive ego like most hackers. Compare to others running in politics
      he's not that bad, look at bob katter and his wing nut party. Remember Sir Jo from QLD back in the day? I do
    and so does julian. Remember the publicity stunt of Peter Garret joining the labor party, where is he now?
    More power to him, I'd certainly vote for him

  • by baileydau ( 1037622 ) on Sunday March 18, 2012 @03:49AM (#39393987)

    He may have to wait a bit to try for the Senate.

    According to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Next_Australian_federal_election [wikipedia.org] it must by held by 30 November 2013. Whilst there is *some* possibility of it being called early, I wouldn't be holding my breath.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 18, 2012 @03:57AM (#39394005)

    Being a British criminal has never kept anyone out of Australia, quite the contrary. ;)

    And what better place than with all the other criminals that run the country?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 18, 2012 @04:40AM (#39394069)

    The Upper House of the Australian parliament is the Senate, "Upper House of the Australian Senate" doesn't make any sense.

  • The populists can get considrable support. Only for a short while, of course -- a society of Assanges, or at least run by Assanges, cannot last very long time. There are certain objective laws of nature (that includes human nature as well) and the utopists that ignore them are doomed to extinction.
  • Controversial candidates, even popular controversial ones, don't win. So this isn't really anything to consider seriously.

    But if it were, I would be against Assange being a member of any government - or any group that might be subject to whistleblowers, at that. Not because of any suitability, but because it would compromise his position as an independent helper of whistleblowers, and that position is far more necessary than any political office.

    If Assange joins a government, a corporate board, or hell, eve

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 18, 2012 @05:43AM (#39394227)

    All his opponents have to do is run a campaign saying he;

    was accused of rape in Sweden and has been under house arrest, (make him look like a criminal)
    has not lived in Australia for 6 years (wiki says he hasn't lived in australia since starting with wikileaks [founded in 2006]), (make him look unaustralian)
    released private diplomatic cables relating to Australia, (make him look like he doesn't care about australian national security)

    and they'd get pretty easy boost.

  • Excuse me. It's still pretty early here and I'm still a bit sleepy and I can't find my reading glasses, but does that headline say, "Australian"?

    What a weird wonderful world we live in.

    • Well, he is Australian. Running for any other senate in the world would probably be a bit of a problem.

  • The irony is that I know virtually nothing about him.
  • Ya, i know hes not been convicted yet, but lets say he wins, then is convicted.. that mean he loses his position?

  • What would his platform be? "Like Ron Paul but with even fewer rules and moral obstacles!"

  • voters in Gillard's electorate don't give a flying fuck about assange or internet freedom or whatever. unless his party can lower their rates, improve their roads, etc better than Gillard, they're just pissing in the wind. twatter is just a shoutbox for retarded publicity stunts. and assange won't be able to do much for voters while he's locked up, so that won't go down well

    move along... nothing to see here

Where it is a duty to worship the sun it is pretty sure to be a crime to examine the laws of heat. -- Christopher Morley