John Birmingham poses a What If? on The Greens, who now command a chunky 16% of the national vote, according to recent polls (excerpts) :
What if Bob Brown's lentil eating slouch bikers and militant anti-military-stuff movement actually got a couple, just a couple, of seats up in the lower house, and forming a government after the next election actually required the eventual victor, be it Abbott or Gillard, to cut a deal with Brown?
What would that government actually do? And more importantly what could it not do, in terms of passing laws and spending money?
They might well be able to leverage their support into seemingly minor but actually significant policies such as, say, a moratorium on the release of genetically-modified organisms into the environment. Or a ban on old growth logging.
They'd almost certainly put a bullet into any xenophobic nonsense about demonizing asylum seekers as mad bombers and child killers waiting to jump our queues and blow up our shopping malls because they hate our precious, precious freedom so much they're willing to spend years in a detention centre just to have a crack at us.
...in actual security policy, even motherhood statements like the party's central principle that "no nuclear armed or powered forces should be deployed within Australia's maritime boundaries" would mean a radical transformation of decades of settled, bipartisan policy, abrogating as it would the entire alliance with US.
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