LABOR has snubbed gambling reform candidate Stephen Mayne in how to vote material now being distributed for the Melbourne state byelection.
Mr Mayne has hit back, saying he would preference the Greens’ Cathy Oke ahead of Labor in the close race many tip to land Ms Oke as the first Green in the lower house.
Mr Mayne said the Labor how to vote card favours “the reactionary religious right” ahead of the Greens.
“This is a progressive inner city seat,” Mr Mayne said. “They should change it [the card] ahead of election day.”
Labor’s literature, which does not identify other candidate’s party ties, asks voters to put Democrat David James Collyer second and Australian Sex Party candidate Fiona Patten third.
Family First candidate Ashley Fenn is last on the Greens’ how to vote sheet and seventh on Labor’s.
The Greens are urging voters to put the African Think Tank’s Berhan Ahmed second and gambling reform candidate Stephen Mayne fifth.
Neither party’s how to vote cards place their lead rival last. The Greens put Labor’s Jennifer Kanis ninth, while Labor gives Ms Oke slot 15 out of 16.
Early voting is now under way, and both the Greens and Labor are handing out campaign brochures.
Labor appear to have snubbed Mr Mayne’s overtures at a preference deal, placing him 12th on the how to vote guide.
Independent Gerrit Hendrik Schorel-Hlavka is the only candidate yet to have formally registered how to vote cards with the Victorian Electoral Commission.
Only VEC-registered how to vote cards can be handed out within 400 metres of a voting centre on election day.
Mr Mayne said Labor refused to talk to him about his request for a $1 bet gambling limit.
“I’ll be preferencing the Greens ahead of Labor,” he said.