Originally published in The Canberra Times on September 28, 2013

Earlier this month the Greens lost more than 500,000 of the 1.6 million voters who supported them in 2010. Earlier this week Greens leader Christine Milne lost six of her most senior staff, including her chief of staff who cited fundamental strategy differences as the reason for his departure. Senator Milne, on the other hand, suggested such departures were ”normal” and that her uncontested re-election as leader was evidence that everything was under control. 

So, how did the Greens lose half a million votes in an election where the ALP was losing ground? Why did the number of people voting Green in the Senate fall in Adam Bandt’s seat of Melbourne when his personal vote in the lower house rose by 8 per cent? Indeed, why was there a swing against the Greens’ Senate vote in every one of the 150 lower house electorates?

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