|Founded||2004(as Country Alliance)|
|Headquarters||Dubbo, New South Wales|
|Colours||Maroon and dark blue|
The Australian Federation Party (AFP), formerly known as the Country Alliance and the Australian Country Party, is an Australian political party. Founded in 2004 by four rural Victorians, the party lodged its initial registration with the Victorian Electoral Commission on 15 August 2005.
In 2020, the party changed its name to the Australian Federation Party, and is currently registered to contest elections in New South Wales, Tasmania, the Australian Capital Territory, and the Northern Territory as well as at federal elections.
The party was founded in early 2004 as the Country Alliance by four Victorians—Fiona Hilton-Wood, a staffer for independent MP Russell Savage; Russell Bate, a Shire of Mansfield councillor; Bob Richardson, a former union official; and Russell Pearson, a member of the Sporting Shooters Association. As the Country Alliance, the party contested the 2006 and 2010 Victorian state elections. In July 2011, the Country Alliance was registered with the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC).
In August 2015, the Victorian Electoral Commission (VEC) approved a name change for the party, adopting the name Australian Country Party. In October 2015, the Australian Electoral Commission approved the party's name change for federal elections.
In August 2018, the party lodged a change of name application to change its name to the Australia Party/Give it Back, but withdrew the application before processing was completed. In September 2018, the VEC approved a similar application, with the party registered in Victoria as the Australian Country Party/Give It Back. In January 2019, the party applied to revert its Victorian registration to the Australian Country Party.
In February 2020, the party changed its name to the Australian Federation Party. On 4 March, Tasmanians 4 Tasmania, a minor party which had contested the 2018 Tasmanian state election, was formally renamed to Federation Party Tasmania.
On 30 June 2020, the application to register Federation Party Australian Capital Territory was lodged with the ACT Electoral Commission. The party is one of 16 parties registered to contest the 2020 Australian Capital Territory general election. The party has also applied to contest local government elections in New South Wales.
As the Country Alliance, the party contested the 2013 Australian federal election in several Victorian lower house seats, as well as fielding Senate candidates in South Australia, Tasmania and Victoria. The party received 6,440 votes, 0.05% of all votes cast.
As the Australian Federation Party, the party contested the 2020 Eden-Monaro by-election. Candidate Jason Potter finished in 14th place out of 14 candidates with 170 votes, or 0.18% of votes cast.
As the Country Alliance, the party contested the three rural upper house regions in the 2006 state election, receiving 13,329 first preference votes and finishing in 9th place overall. In the Western Victoria Region, preferences from the Country Alliance and the Labor Party flowed to the Democratic Labour Party's lead candidate Peter Kavanagh, resulting in Kavanagh securing the fifth and final seat, defeating Greens candidate Marcus Ward.
The party nominated 37 candidates for the 2010 state election, standing in four upper house seats—Western Victoria, Eastern Victoria, Northern Victoria and Northern Metropolitan—and most of the lower house seats in regional Victoria. At the election, the party's best result in the lower house was in the district of Shepparton where it polled 20.5% of the primary vote and 39.8% of the two-candidate preferred vote after preferences. In the Legislative Council, the party was in contention for the final spot in the three country regions. In Northern Victoria Region, Country Alliance polled 6.8% of the primary vote and fell short by approximately 1,900 votes on the final count after the distribution of preferences.
In February 2014, the Victorian branch of Katter's Australian Party merged with Country Alliance, announcing the newly-combined party would contest the 2014 state election as the Australian Country Alliance. At the election, the Australian Country Alliance received 1.28% of the vote in the lower house and 0.68% in the upper house in the 2014 Victorian state election.
As Australian Country Party/Give It Back, the party contested two lower house seats—Ovens Valley and South-West Coast—as well as all eight upper house regions in the 2018 state election. Both lower house candidates received over 8% of first preference votes. It did not receive as much as 2% of first preference votes in any region for the upper house, with an average result of 0.68%.
The party stood candidates in four seats at the 2020 Northern Territory general election: Araluen, Braitling, Gwoja and Namatjira. Overall, the party received a total of 942 first preference votes, or 0.92% of all votes cast.
- Knight, Ben (18 August 2005). "Victoria gets its newest political party, The Country Alliance". Stateline. ABC News. Archived from the original on 6 April 2012. Retrieved 25 August 2005.
- "NOTICE OF PARTY REGISTRATION DECISION" (PDF). Australian Electoral Commission. 27 February 2020.
- "Party Registration Notices" (PDF). Elections NSW. NSW Electoral Commission. Retrieved 8 July 2020.
- "CHANGE OF PARTY NAME AND BALLOT PAPER NAME" (PDF). Tasmanian Government Gazette. 23 March 2020.
- "Australian Federation Party Australian Capital Territory has applied to register as a political party for 2020 ACT Legislative Assembly election" (PDF). Elections ACT. ACT Electoral Commission. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
- "Australian Country Party - application to register political party". Northern Territory Electoral Commission. 6 February 2019. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
- "Notice under s.134(6A) of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 – Country Alliance". Australian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 31 October 2015.
- "Notice of change of party name" (PDF). Australian Electoral Commission. 2018.
- "Application withdrawn Australian Country Party" (PDF). Australian Electoral Commission. 10 January 2019. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
- "Change of Australian Country Party to Australian Country Party/Give it Back - Victorian Electoral Commission". Victorian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 6 October 2018.
- "Application to change a registered political party's name". Victorian Electoral Commission. 17 January 2019. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
- "Sixteen political parties registered for the 2020 ACT Legislative Assembly election". Elections ACT. ACT Electoral Commission. Retrieved 29 July 2020.
- "Candidates for the 2016 federal election". Australian Electoral Commission. 11 June 2016. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- Wind, Emily (20 July 2020). "Minor party sets eyes on new elections". Tumut and Adelong Times. Retrieved 29 July 2020.
- "State Election 2006 results". Victorian Electoral Commission.
- "Shepparton". abc.net.au.
- "State Election 2010: Northern Victoria Region results summary - Victorian Electoral Commission". vec.vic.gov.au.
- Pearce, Cimara (10 February 2014). "Katter's Australian Party set to merge with Country Alliance in bid for rural seats". The Weekly Times. Retrieved 11 February 2014.
- "State Election 2014 - Summary". Vec.vic.gov.au. 17 July 2015. Retrieved 10 August 2016.
- "State Election 2018 results". Victorian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 7 February 2019.
- Green, Antony. "Araluen". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 13 September 2020.
- Green, Antony. "Braitling". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 13 September 2020.
- Green, Antony. "Gwoja". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 13 September 2020.
- Green, Antony. "Namatjira". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 13 September 2020.
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