Five Jewish members

July 3, 2016 by Henry Benjamin
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As Australia waits for the final results of a tightly contested general election, five Jewish members have been assured a seat in the next parliament.

Incumbent Jewish members Michael Danby and Mark Dreyfus have held their Victorian seats for the Labor party.

Josh Frydenberg

Josh Frydenberg

Liberal member for the blue riband seat of Kooyong in Melbourne Josh Frydenberg was Minister for Resources, Energy and Northern Australia in the last parliament.

Frydenberg told J-Wire: “In Kooyong 62.7% of vote has been counted and I have had a swing to me on first preferences of 1% and 0.3 % second preferences. Given that last time in 2013 we had the largest second preferences swing since 1975 and the Greens this time threw everything at us, this is a

Michael Danby

Michael Danby

great result.”

Labor member for Melbourne Ports Michael Danby added: “It looks like I’ve survived the ugliest campaign by the prejudiced Greens Party. I remain in the Australian Parliament thanks to many people who judge you by the content of your character not your party label.”

Newcomer Julian Leeser has been elected to represent Berowra, the NSW seat of former Liberal MP

Julian Leeser

Julian Leeser

Philip Ruddock, the second-longest serving member of the Australian parliament. Leeser is the first Jewish Liberal from New South Wales in the 115-year history of the Australian federal parliament. He told J-Wire: “I’m honoured and humbled to be elected as the member for Berowra. I am very conscious of being the first Jewish Liberal elected to the House of Representatives from NSW. I commenced my campaign with a mezuzah affixing ceremony which was attended by hundreds of people and am looking forward to serving the people of Berowra and being a proud Jewish voice in the federal Parliament.”

Dr Mike Freelander tends a young patient

Dr Mike Freelander tends a young patient

In the outskirts of Sydney, paediatrician Dr Michael Freelander celebrated his victory in Macarthur for the Labor party over the incumbent Liberal member. It is Freelander’s first foray into federal politics. Winning with a 12.6% swing Dr Freelander told J-Wire: “I needed a 3.4% swing to win but the final result was against my wildest expectations. I have been agitating for better health facilities in this rapidly growing electorate and the Liberals have been throwing everything against me.”

Mark Dreyfus will continue to represent the electorate of Isaacs in Victoria. The Labor MP who was Shadow Attorney-General in the previous parliament, told J-Wire: “I am honoured and humbled to be returned as the representative for the great electorate of Isaacs, and looking forward to serving Australia in my fourth term as a member of the House of Representatives.”

Mark Dreyfus

Mark Dreyfus

In the meantime, Australia waits as counting continues to determine if the incumbent Liberals can hold their position. There is a strong viewpoint that it will be a hung parliament.

The morning after the election found the Liberal/National Party with 65 seats and the Australian Labor Party with 67. Five seats are held by others and 13 remain in doubt.  One party has to win 76 seats to form a majority government.
Counting of votes, including postal votes, will resume on Tuesday.


7 Responses to “Five Jewish members”
  1. Larry Stillman says:

    Mr Danby protests too much. Repeatedly calling the Greens candidate a bigot for a gross political error, and then there are the people (caught on camera), arrested, allegedly tearing down Green and Liberal banners in the middle of the night. Danby’s office was warned off from using them by the ALP. And then there is the matter of two different voting cards, one preference for the Libs, distributed in ”Jewish’ areas. Who ran an ugly campaign?

    • Adrian Jackson says:

      Michael Danby should remember that to win government the ALP will have to work with the cross bench MP’s and Senators including the Greens.

      In the House of Representatives there will also be Hinch, Hansen, McGowan and Katter and non of them like the two major parties either.

      Looks like we will be going to another election.

  2. Liat Kirby-Nagar says:

    Agree with you, Harry. How on earth Tim Wilson achieved the position of Human Rights Commissioner between 2014-2016, I don’t know. A very poor fit indeed. Too young and immature, too conservative, with the kind of views that seem to countermand the principles of what he was supposed to be representing.

  3. LIZZIE MOORE says:


  4. Michael Burd says:

    At least we still have one Jewish MP in parliament that will publicly stand up for Israel and Israeli Jewish human rights .
    keep up your great work Michael at least you have the moral courage to represent those Jews that do support Israel in Australia .

    We also have Tim Wilson and James Peterson with similar moral courage who strongly defend Israel in the public .

    • J-Wire says:

      Mike Kelly too….

    • Henry Herzog says:

      Great, having Tim Wilson in parliment. Now he can push to have the Racial Discrimination Act changed to have insulting and offending Jews on grounds of race as being legitamate free speech. Dr Toben must also be delighted.

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