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Pirates contest Griffith

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The Pirate Party Australia has confirmed Melanie Thomas, one of its senate candidates at the 2013 federal election, will run for the Brisbane-based seat of Griffith.

Ms Thomas, the party’s deputy president, says she will highlight the “appalling state” of Australian politics in the lead-up to the February 8 poll.

“It has become mired in issues that shouldn’t be politicised,” she said in a statement.

“Asylum seekers, climate change and same-sex marriage are just three major issues that have been taken by the current government and distorted for political gain.”

The Griffith by-election was called after Mr Rudd, a two-time prime minister, quit in November, despite holding the seat at the general election in September.

Terri Butler, an employment and industrial relations lawyer, will contest the seat for Labor.

Dr Bill Glasson, former president of the Australian Medical Association, who lost to Mr Rudd in September, will stand again for the Liberal National Party.

While the Pirate Party is yet to win a seat in Australia, it has had success abroad.

Globally, the Pirate Party movement has won two seats in the European parliament, three national seats in the Icelandic parliament, 45 state seats in Germany, and many local government positions.

The Pirate Party says it stands for civil liberties, intellectual property reform and increased transparency in government.