It’s Official: Julian Assange Will Run for Office

And his chances are not that bad

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© Suzanne Plunkett / REUTERS

Julian Assange

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has filed paperwork to run for a seat in the Australian senate as a member of the newly formed WikiLeaks party, reported the Australian daily The Age.

The Queensland-born Assange first announced his intention to run in the Sept. 14 federal election last December.  According to The Age, he seems to have a pretty good chance of winning: Research by the Australian Labor Party’s internal polling company, UMR Research, indicates that Assange could be quite a competitive candidate in either New South Wales or Victoria.

(More: Why is Ecuador Julian Assange’s Choice for Asylum?)

The former computer hacker has been living in the Ecuadorian embassy in London since June to avoid being extradited to Sweden, where he faces sexual assault charges. According to Agence France-Presse, he is afraid that he will be sent from Sweden to the United States where officials will question him for the release of thousands of U.S. diplomatic cables.

(More: The Allegations Against Assange: Views From Sweden)

According to The Age, Australian law permits citizens living overseas to run for office at home. However, it is unclear how Assange intends to run a campaign from the other end of the world or how he will assume office if he wins the election.

It seems that whether Assange wins or not, he already has one staunch supporter: his mother. Christine Assange believed that her son would be “awesome” in the role.

“In the House of Representatives we get to choose between US lackey party number one and US lackey party number two – between the major parties,” the 41-year-old told The Age. “So it will be great to ‘Assange’ the Senate for some Aussie oversight.”

In 2006, Assange established whistleblower website WikiLeaks, where he in 2010 published hundreds of thousands of classified U.S. documents and diplomatic cables that proved to be huge embarrassments for governments worldwide.

(More: Support for Assange from His Mother and (Most of) His Motherland)

16 comments
Wlodge
Wlodge

Assange has confirmed he will stand for a senate seat in the state of Victoria in Australia. A party has been formed and is in the process of being registered and will contest sentate seats in other states. His chance of gaining a seat are slim at best. The Australian public is not overly enthusiastic about Assange. He is seen for what he is. A self publicist and radical who has no idea of government or policy. If he was to gain a seat he has the problem of having to sit in the parliament within two months of his election. The British police will make sure he does not leave the embassy where he's holded up and if he does he will be paying a visit to Sweden. The Australian government which is increasingly likely to be the Liberal Country Party Coalition will be doing Assange no favours. The reason he is standing for senate is he thinks if he gaisn a seat it will put pressure on the British governments to allow him exit from the UK. It won't happen. 

Bill Lodge

Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

TaeganBolton
TaeganBolton like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

im turning 18 soon i was thinking of not voting, but if he gets accepted i'll vote for him

mrchambersblog
mrchambersblog

psh.  the guy's a russian hack(er).  activist, yeah right. 

bibleverse1
bibleverse1

Activist unwilling to accept consequences of breaking law is not an activist.

StevenDaoud
StevenDaoud like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

@bibleverse1 Julian Assange has not been charged with any crimes. How is he unwilling to accept the consequences? Sweden wants to question him but are unwilling to do so anywhere but Sweden. How is extraditing a man who is not charged with a crime just? 

TheHansBecker
TheHansBecker like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 8 Like

@bibleverse1Actually, some of the most well-known activists break the law. Martin Luther King... Gandhi.... Nelson Mandela. 

mojo4395
mojo4395

@TheHansBecker @bibleverse1 Yes, and they openly accepted the consequences of breaking the law.  That's one of the tenants of civil disobedience.  

anonopotamus
anonopotamus like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

@mojo4395 @TheHansBecker @bibleverse1 

If a law is unjust, and its punishments an injustice against the rights of humanity or the citizenry those laws are supposed to represent, what moral responsibility do the citizenry have to kowtow to the "consequences" (punishments) an empowered class attempts to enforce over its flock? 

As much as it pains us all to admit, a large component of the United States' Government has forgotten its place as a representative body and now thinks itself a ruling class. In parallel, the people, too, have forgotten this as evidenced by the anthropomorphizing of our representatives in our language. They have gone from being "our" government, to "the" government; and with that, unfortunately, goes the concept that they do not, and should not, have any further rights than we the people grant them. 

If Assange were to face the star-chamber like trial allowed the U.S. Government by H.R. 1710 and the P.A.T.R.I.O.T. act, he would simply disappear. If he indeed believes in his cause, then not only does he have no moral obligation to surrender, but he has an ethical obligation to avoid such a fate at any cost--as the penalty for accepting that fate is the effective end of his movement. 

tl;dr: You can do little good from inside a prison cell and even less dead. 

SandraEckersley
SandraEckersley

Actually no. All Julian Assange has done to date is apply to register to vote in Australia.  He is yet to register a political party or apply to run for the Senate. The fact he personally is not registered to vote yet & had to use his Mum's old address at age 41 perhaps demonstrates the seriousness with which he takes the democratic process in Australia. 

j_bamford
j_bamford like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

Assange does not await "charges" in Sweden, as this article states. He hasn't been charged with anything. He is wanted for questioning regarding these bogus allegations, questioning which the Swedish government could've done over the phone, as they have in other cases. It's obvious to anyone with half a brain that this is a political frame-up, organized by the US gov, which aims to silence Assange and have him "extradited" to the US. He has reason to fear such a situation given that the US government has used torture on many detainees, including Bradley Manning, and would not hesitate to use torture on Assange, who has helped expose many of its crimes and lies.

TheDisclosure
TheDisclosure like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

Assange is great. It's about time time. It's about time.

TheAllenGore
TheAllenGore

He's going to get his Wiki whacked!  I'm glad he'll at least be on the other side of the world!!!

karen.carver
karen.carver

I feel sorry for whoever he represents...he'll be so busy arguing against others that he'll never get anything done that anyone needs...

RickGordon
RickGordon like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

Awesome. Really hope he gets elected.