Minor parties across the country have been spurred into action by the government teaming up with the Greens and Nick Xenophon to pass the Senate reform laws designed to get rid of the “feral” crossbenchers unleashed on Australia at the last election. It’s previously been reported that progressive minor parties would be targeting the seat of Melbourne, held by the Greens, and seats like Batman, Grayndler and Sydney, which are seen as vulnerable Labor seats that the Greens want. The idea of a double dissolution election has encouraged many minor parties to look at how they could get themselves to the quota of 7.7% — a lower quota than the circa 14% needed for a half-Senate election. Ms Tips hears that Motoring Enthusiast Party Senator Ricky Muir, who has acted more as an independent since falling out with sections of the party within his first months in office, could be following his fellow crossbenchers Jacqui Lambie and Glenn Lazarus in moving to start his own eponymous party before the election. Muir’s been carefully cultivating his image as the “everyman” in Parliament after a shaky start in 2013 — could it get him over the line again? Watch this space.

ricky muir

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