The Victorian Greens have achieved their strongest state election result on record, and will enter the 60th Victorian Parliament with a doubled party room, and eight MPs elected at a general election for the first time in Victorian political history.
Earlier today the buttons were pushed for the Upper House, declaring Sarah Mansfield as the new Greens MLC for Western Victoria, marking the first ever regional seat won by the Greens in Victoria.
Aiv Puglielli was also declared the new Greens MLC for the North-Eastern Metropolitan Region, likely making him the youngest member of the next Parliament at just 27 years of age.
Mansfield and Puglielli will be joined in the Upper House by Southern Metropolitan MLC Katherine Copsey and re-elected Northern Metropolitan MLC Samantha Ratnam.
These wins follow a Green wave across Lower House seats in the city. Ellen Sandell (Melbourne), Dr Tim Read (Brunswick) and Sam Hibbins (Prahran) retained their seats with strong swings towards them, while Gabrielle de Vietri picked up the seat of Richmond.
The party also saw significant two party preferred swings towards them in seats like Footscray, Albert Park, Pascoe Vale and Preston.
The breakthrough into regional Victoria for the Greens at this election is the result of a strong grassroots campaign against Labor’s gas drilling plans in Western Victoria at sites like the 12 Apostles and Corio Bay. The Greens campaigned to stop gas drilling and it is no wonder the people of Western Victoria responded by electing their first ever Greens MP.
The Greens say with four MPs in the Upper House they will hold the balance of power, and are ready to get to work from day one to push the Labor government to raise the age of criminal responsibility to 14, end gas drilling, put a cap on rent increases, end native forest logging and pass the Greens’ Strengthening Integrity bill.
Labor will have a choice of either working constructively with the Greens in the Upper House, or siding with the Liberals and far-right, religious right and racist parties.
On top of the list of priorities for the newly elected Greens team is reforming Victoria’s broken and undemocratic group voting system in the Upper House, which distorts the will of voters and sees candidates with a fraction of the vote get elected on the back of preference whispering and backroom deals.
Quotes attributable to Leader of the Victorian Greens, Samantha Ratnam MLC:
“This is a historic election result for the Greens.
“We’re heading into the next Parliament with a doubled party room and a historic breakthrough into regional Victoria.
“This is a clear sign from Victorians that they want to stop gas drilling near the 12 Apostles and take stronger action on climate change.
“We will be ready from day one to get stronger action on First Nations justice, climate change, housing affordability and integrity and fix the undemocratic group voting system.”