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NSW holds the key to strong Senate.

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Australian Democrats Press Releases

Senator Aden Ridgeway Democrats Senator for New South Wales

Dated: 13 September 2004 Press Release Number: 04/894

Portfolio: Electoral Matters & Public Administration

More from on Electoral Matters & Public Administration

NSW Holds The Key To Strong Senate

The State of NSW has had continuous Democrat Senate representation since 1978 and will return Aden Ridgeway for another term, say the Australian Democrats.

Democrats leader, Senator Andrew Bartlett said he was not surprised that disenchantment with the major parties is pushing people towards protest voting.

"People are looking to protest votes as the differences between the two major parties become less apparent," said Senator Bartlett.

"However, I believe NSW voters understand the difference between the important legislative role the Democrats play in the Senate and the role of the Greens as a protest via press release and media grandstanding party.

"The Democrats are Australia's only strong and independent Senate party. Regardless of who wins Government, the Democrats in the Senate will force the Government to act honestly, fairly and justly."

Democrats Senator for NSW and lead Senate candidate, Aden Ridgeway, said the people of NSW will also be crucial in deciding whether the Federal parliament retains its only Indigenous representative.

"I do not take for granted that I will be re-elected but am confident the people of NSW understand the importance of our parliament being as representative as possible," said Senator Ridgeway.

"There was a 16-year gap between 1983 and 1999 when there was no Indigenous voice in the Federal parliament.

"At a time when elected national Indigenous representation is being disassembled by the Howard Government now more than ever we need Indigenous voices at a Federal level."

The Democrats NSW Team also includes Nina Burridge, a teacher and academic and Democrats National President and Greg Butler, an engineer.