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Industrial Socialist Labor Party

The Industrial Socialist Labor Party was a short lived socialist political party in Australia in the late 1910s and early 1920s. It was founded by radical socialist members of the industrial wing of the Australian Labor Party (ALP), at a time when the ALP's socialist ideology was a matter of intra-party dispute. It was closely aligned with the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) and the One Big Union (OBE) movement.

The party was formally founded at a conference in August 1919 and candidates were endorsed for a number of seats at the 1919 federal election. All these candidates were opposed by endorsed ALP candidates and received less than 10% of the primary vote.

The party's only elected parliamentary representative was Percy Brookfield who won the seat of Sturt with the party's endorsement at the 1920 New South Wales Legislative Assembly election. Brookfield had the balance of power in the assembly following the election but was murdered the following year.

Michael Considine, Labor member for Barrier in the federal House of Representatives from 1917, joined the Industrial Socialist Labor Party in 1920 after his expulsion from the ALP, and unsuccessfully contested the seat of Darling for the party in 1922.

Donald Grant, one of 12 Australian IWW members gaoled in 1916, contested Sturt at the 1922 general election but received only 2.8% of the primary vote. He later became a member of parliament for the Labor Party. Other members of the party who later became prominent in the ALP were Jock Garden and Jack Baddeley.

Support for the party rapidly diminished after the ALP adopted the Socialist Objective in 1921 with many members returning to the ALP and others joining the Australian Communist Party.


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