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Labor’s national executive intervened to remove the head of the Tasmanian chapter, Ben McGregor, after months of internal wrangling, and voted to postpone the party’s state conference.
the main points:
- McGregor says he is ‘deeply saddened and disappointed’ to be fired as Labour’s head of state
- Secretary of State Stuart Benson said Labor needs to focus on retaining and regaining seats in the upcoming federal election
- She says that’s why the state conference was postponed until after the elections
Last month, McGregor said he was cleared of any wrongdoing Through an internal party investigation into allegations, he sent inappropriate text messages to a colleague seven years ago.
But Secretary of State Stuart Benson said the complaint could not have been investigated because it did not fall within party politics, and that the complainant decided not to proceed.
The complaint spoiled McGregor’s attempts to secure Clark’s seat in the House of Representatives in the last state election and step down as a candidate.
He then threatened legal action against the complainant and opposition leader Rebecca White Because of comments made by the latter that Mr. McGregor was unfit to stand for election.
Mr. Benson last month called on Mr. MacGregor to resign as party chief and yesterday the national branch of the party took action.
In a statement released last night, MacGregor said his dismissal as president was “extremely disappointing and disappointing”, and he was not given an opportunity to address the national executive before it made its decision.
“I have worked hard for the party for many years, and I strive to give a voice to grassroots members,” he said.
“This action can only negatively affect Tasmanian confidence in the ALP and undermine the rights of all party members to fair treatment through internal party processes.”
said the complainant Mr. McGregor sent her an obscene letter When she declined his invitation to go to a bar.
McGregor said at the time that he was sitting next to his wife when he sent the text messages, which he said were sent as a jest.
He said he apologized to the complainant after he was told he had caused the abuse.
Partisan sources said yesterday that Senator Ann Urquhart is expected to step in as acting president until a permanent replacement is elected.
State convention delayed until after federal elections
The party’s national executive also voted to postpone the party’s annual meeting, due to be held in Hobart later this month, until after the next federal election.
In a letter to members, Benson said the federal election was “extremely important,” and that the party needed to focus its efforts on retaining its seats in Lyon and Franklin, as well as restoring Bass and Braddon North voters.
“For this reason, the ALP National Executive has decided to postpone the Tasmanian ALP State Convention until after the next federal election,” the letter reads.
Federal elections are scheduled for sometime next year, but no date has been set.
Months of scandals and infighting
The dismissal of McGregor is the latest dispute to erupt within the party, after months of scandals and infighting.
In June, David O’Bearn resigned as leader of the opposition over allegations that he accepted a junior union employee without her consent and sent her unsolicited text messages, more than a decade ago, when he was secretary of state for the Federation of Wines, Hospitality and Miscellaneous.
Mr. O’Bearn said he believed the text and kiss exchange was consensual at the time, but now realized that was not the case.
An internal investigation found that while his behavior was wrong and inappropriate, Mr. O’Bearn did not violate Labour’s sexual harassment policy.
in August, Mr. O’Bearn left the state labor caucus, after two former prime ministers and Mrs. White called on him to resign from Parliament, but said he would remain Franklin’s deputy and Labor member.
The Union of Health and Community Services cut ties with the party last month, saying Labor MPs had “failed over and over again”.
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