Australian Labor party sweeps to victory in New South Wales
SYDNEY, Australia (CNN) -- The Australian Labor Party
won a decisive victory over conservatives in New South Wales state over the weekend.
Labor increased its majority by at least 13
seats in the lower house legislature after an inept campaign
from the Liberal-National opposition centered on a pledge to sell off the electricity industry in Australia's most populous state.
Voters deserted the conservative coalition that governs the country nationally.
The coalition also took a beating at the hands of minor
parties, including Pauline Hanson's far right One Nation party which captured almost eight percent of the vote statewide.
One Nation was hoping to end up with two upper house seats
after a performance that party leaders said had cemented it as the country's third political force. In some country areas, the anti-immigration, protectionist party scored almost 20 percent of the vote -- mostly at the expense of the rural-based National Party.
Reuters contributed to this report.
One Nation fights for survival in Australia poll
March 24, 1999