The Palmer United Party (PUP) was formed by Australian mining businessman Clive Palmer in April 2013 after he resigned as a member of the Liberal National Party. The party was to be originally named the United Australia Party, however the name was changed to fast track registration and to avoid a conflict with another party with a similar name.
He announced his intention to stand candidates in all 150 Australian electorates. He announced that the purpose of the party is to contest and even win the next federal election. The PUP did contest the next election in 150 electorates but only won in the electorate of Fairfax but managed to win three Senate seats
The Palmer United Party lacks a clearly full range of policies so opinions about its ideology is mostly speculative. It's core policies around which the party was based were
- Abolish the Carbon Tax
- Revising the current Australian Government's Refugee Policy
- Party Officials should not be Lobbyists
- Ensuring that a proportion of wealth created in a region returns to that region.
Palmer and by extension his party have rarely championed any unpopular policy or measure, attacking the Australian deficit, tax rises and well and cuts to spending despite the contradictory nature of these positions. The party's unwillingness to debate controversial issues, its attempts to potray itself as anti-establishment and its desire to appeal to the broadest possible support base as possible makes it justifiably described as a populist political party.
According to the Palmer United Party website, there offically declared policies are as followed:
- Party Officials should not be Lobbyists, thereby taking a strong position on Paid Political Lobbyists, saving tax payers dollars and introducing Fair Policies
- Abolish the Carbon Tax
- Revising the current Australian Government’s Refugee Policy to ensure Australia is protected and refugees are given opportunities for a better future and lifestyle
- Creating Mineral Wealth to continuously contribute to the welfare of the Australian community. This will be achieved by utilising mineral resources from Queensland and Western Australia, and incentives from the Commonwealth of Australia to establish downstream processing in the States of Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia; and exporting products at a higher dollar value, thereby creating more revenue, jobs, tax and more facilities.
- Establishing a System where people create wealth in various parts of the country and for that wealth to flow back to the Community that generates the wealth. For example, if a particular region creates wealth, a significant percentage of that wealth should go back to the region.