Greens to figure in Labor review

LABOR'S handling of its messy divorce with the Greens will be a key focus of a review of the election campaign that led to one of the party's worst defeats in Tasmania.

The review's terms of reference, obtained by  The Examiner , show the decision making of the political wing of the party and the relationship with affiliated unions and rank and file members will be part of a wide-ranging post-mortem. 

``The relationship between the central campaign, electorate organisers and local campaigns in a Hare-Clark election'' is one item listed for discussion. 

Labor's campaign was undermined by mixed messages with individual candidates appearing to be more focused on fighting each other than their Liberal opponents at times. 

Tasmania's only Labor member in the House of Representatives, Julie Collins, will conduct the examination, along with the head of the Queensland branch, Anthony Chisholm, and ALP national executive member Tim Ayres. 

It will examine the period between June 2013 and polling day. 

Planning for the campaign was hampered by uncertainty about the future of the relationship with the Greens - a source of deep unrest among Labor members, which was not resolved until January.

Party insiders have also criticised the central campaign, run largely out of then-premier Lara Giddings's office, as disconnected from Labor heartland and the regions. 

``It was a half-baked campaign against the federal government,'' one Labor source said.

``The further out of Hobart you get the more people are thinking Labor has lost the plot.''

ALP state secretary John Dowling took a swipe at anonymous critics and encouraged them to use the review process, which includes a series of forums around the state, to air their grievances. 

``Rather than background journalists and backstab people they should participate in them,'' Mr Dowling said. 

He said the field campaign, candidate support, training and amount of advertising was better than the 2010 campaign, but said there was always room for improvement. 

Internal polling in late November and early December showed the party was on track to retain just five seats if it did not end its ties with the Greens. 

After Saturday's election, Labor is assured six seats, with another two still undecided.

The report with recommendations for improvements for the 2018 campaign is due on May 23.

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