Victorian Socialists set sights on state parliament

Photo: Victorian Socialists

Victorian Socialists (VS) held its second members’ conference on July 21, where attendees discussed the next steps for this emergent electoral force, formed a little over a year ago.

The conference opened with a debrief on the federal election, during which a strong consensus emerged that winning more than 4% of the vote in each of the three electorates VS contested — a vote far higher than that of any socialist candidate in recent decades — was a great result.

It was agreed that this result, along with VS’s vote in the state elections last year — where, due to preference flows, it narrowly missed out on electing a member to the Legislative Council — showed there is a basis for building a socialist electoral alternative to Labor and the Greens, particularly in the north of Melbourne.

Regarding future proposals and activities, VS members reaffirmed their commitment to building VS and to contest the 2019 local council elections and the next federal election, with the overarching electoral aim of electing one or more candidates to state parliament at the 2022 elections.

Members also voted to involve the party in organising against the federal Coalition government and supporting community campaigns in Melbourne’s north.

The conference endorsed the call by the recently-formed Shut Down IMARC group for a blockade of the International Mining and Resources Conference at the Melbourne Convention Centre on October 29-31, the Student Strike 4 Climate on September 20 and upcoming Extinction Rebellion actions.

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