disaffected voters
Pauline Hanson (Image: AAP/Darren England)

One Nation leader Senator Pauline Hanson has lost yet another long-time loyalist in the form of former national executive member Pat Loy following the party’s decision to not contest the Victorian state election in November.

Loy announced her resignation as a life member of Pauline Hanson One Nation on her Facebook page last week. The party stalwart’s departure from the organisation to which she had given more than 20 years of service, which included service on the ruling national executive, was linked to the party’s decision to call off the party’s Victorian election tilt. Party members who had volunteered to run in the November election were recently informed that the campaign was off.

The party has, according to Loy’s account in the Facebook comment thread, asked interested party members to change their candidate application to the 2019 federal election instead.

Her exit from the crossbench Senator’s political party is the latest in a series of departures — either by resignation or sacking — of party members or staff that have taken place since One Nation won four seats in the Senate in the double dissolution election held in July 2016.

Long-time party director Ian Nelson left in August 2016 and former party national secretary, Saraya Beric, left in October that same year. Both individuals appeared in a Four Corners special in April 2017 that alleged non-compliance with electoral laws regarding a donation of an aeroplane.

Western Australia’s Ron McClean and Marye Daniels were removed as office bearers of the party in that state not long prior to the March 2017 state election. They had both contributed time and significant funds to One Nation over a 20-year period.

Hanson has also had a series of departures from her Senate team since the 2016 with Rod Culleton leaving the Senate under a constitutional cloud over a bankruptcy matter, Fraser Anning turning independent and then becoming a member of Katter’s Australia Party and Brian Burston linking up with entrepreneur Clive Palmer after Burston and Hanson had a series of disagreements.

Former One Nation member Pat Loy said in the Facebook thread that she was angry that Victorian members could be ignored and “treated so badly” by the party’s head office in Queensland.

“This was the final straw that made me decide I’d had enough. Head office know very well that we had Candidates for the State Election,” Loy said. “It was head office who phoned those Candidates to tell them the State Election was off. But did ask them to change their application to the Federal Election.”

Former One Nation national executive member Rod Evans served with Loy and characterises her resignation as a loss to Hanson’s political vehicle. “Best wishes Pat. I know first hand how much this decision meant to you,” Evans said on Facebook. “I worked along side of you for many years and always had your loyalty to count on. Your leaving is Victoria’s and the party’s loss.”

Former One Nation president and candidate Jim Savage, also in the same thread, expressed his gratitude for Loy’s support during his term in office during the years Hanson was not at One Nation’s helm.

“I am always your supporter and I thank you for so many years of LOYAL support to One Nation. When I was Qld. president I was always able to rest easy knowing we had YOU there in Vic to hold our candle and keep it alight. It must be with a very heavy heart you make this decision. Love always from Qld. One Nation supporters, and THANK YOU!!”

What do you make of One Nation’s treatment of its non-Queensland branches? Let us know by writing to [email protected].

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