'Our system of politics needs fixing': Kim For Canberra launches

Professor Kim Rubenstein will launch her party today. Picture: Dion Georgopoulos
Professor Kim Rubenstein will launch her party today. Picture: Dion Georgopoulos

The major parties are to be derided as an "immovable roadblock to progress" and "consumed by desires to maintain power" in a fiery address on Sunday by independent ACT Senate candidate Kim Rubenstein, which also takes inspiration from champion Australian tennis player Ash Barty.

The constitutional lawyer and academic has formed the newly registered Kim For Canberra party and will officially launch her run for one of two Senate spots at Canberra's Aspen Island next to the National Carillon.

In a campaign launch speech seen by The Canberra Times, Professor Rubenstein will urge voters to shift away from the major parties, stating there is an "insidious" chipping away every day at Australia's system of politics and independents in parliament can ensure the current parties "do better."

"Our system of politics needs fixing," she is expected to say.

"Political parties, whose ties to the community grow more fraught by the day, represent at this moment - an immovable roadblock to progress. Consumed by desires to maintain power and to wedge an already divided community, the current political party structure is not working to benefit the country.

"There are many people within those parties who want to do better, but their party structures and culture precludes it. Independents can be the catalyst, too, not only in ensuring our parliament concentrates on policy outcomes, but in ensuring the current parties do better."


Prof Rubenstein will outline her three key issues that inspired her to run for political office: climate action, gender equality and integrity.

"Any government that does not see integrity as the most pressing issue can't deliver on anything else," she is expected to say.

And Prof Rubenstein is inspired by the newly-minted 2022 Australian Open champion.

"Australia's wonderful Ash Barty reminds us - as sport does so well - that you can aim to win, as a political contest demands, but without that undermining your own sense of self and staying true to the central values that should guide us all," she is expected to say.

"And most importantly, to relish and appreciate each step along the way - as we are today, celebrating the formation of the Kim For Canberra party as a registered party."

She is seeking to become the first independent senator representing the ACT, but she will be up against history and a prominent mix of ACT Senate candidates.

Former Wallabies great David Pocock is also running as an independent candidate, while the major parties are represented by Labor frontbencher Katy Gallagher, Liberal minister Zed Seselja and Greens candidate Dr Tjanara Goreng Goreng.

Since 1975, the ACT has returned one Labor and one Liberal senator at every election.

"The human potential is immense, and I believe we can continue to harness that for good. Like this once-in-a-lifetime pandemic. We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to change the way we do politics, to break from convention, to make meaningful change," Prof Rubenstein is expected to say.

"We can imagine this world, now we just have to make it happen."

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This story 'Do better'. Do Barty. Kim For Canberra launches the party first appeared on The Canberra Times.