With counting finished, it’s been revealed that Legalise Cannabis Australia’s primary vote topped half a million in May’s federal election.

Its 501,421 tally was almost double the 262,426 votes it received in 2019, when it ran as the HEMP Party.

Legalise Cannabis Australia Party president Michael Balderstone

Bernie Bradley’s 161,899 primary votes (5.37%) in the Queensland Senate saw the party easily surpass the 4% required to get electoral funding.

It was the same story in the Northern Territory, where Lance Lawrence won a 6.23% share with 6,455 votes.

In Longman, Queensland – the only lower house seat the party contested – its candidate Nigel Quinlan got 6,025 votes (5.6%). 

LCA, which has had an influx of new members since May’s poll, said it expects to get enough electoral funding to give it a “serious war chest for the future”.

It is now trying to form a Legalise Cannabis Victoria Party to contest the state election in November. It is already registered to run in NSW in March 2023.

President Michael Balderstone added: “With a national vote of 3.33%, we were only a whisker behind Clive Palmer’s United Australia Party, which got 3.46%, and gave Pauline Hanson a run for her money with One Nation getting 4.29%.”

Prior to launching Cannabiz, Martin was co-founder and CEO of Asia-Pac’s leading B2B media and marketing information brand Mumbrella, overseeing its sale to Diversified Communications in 2017. A journalist...