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Hanson defends push for new WA party

AAP logoAAP 8/12/2016 Paul Osborne, AAP Senior Political Writer

Pauline Hanson has described One Nation WA as a "couple of ratbags", amid claims her Queensland-based party has ripped off a membership database to register ahead of the state election.

The West Australian electoral commission has opened public comment on the registration of Pauline Hanson's One Nation (PHON) for the state election on March 11.

One Nation WA (ONWA) was deregistered as a party, under pressure from Queensland party officials, but still exists as an incorporated body and has its own executive, meetings, budget and website.

The secretary of One Nation WA, Brian McRea, who has been involved with the party since its inception 20 years ago, said Senator Hanson had been "illegally" given access to the WA membership database.

Mr McRea said a former member of One Nation WA had provided the list without the permission of the WA organisation's executive.

PHON has told the WA electoral commission it has signed up the 500 members necessary to register as a party.

But it is unclear how many of the 500 names came from the One Nation WA database.

The Australian Greens say it warrants an investigation by the WA electoral commission.

Senator Hanson says One Nation WA has been a thorn in her side for years.

"They have not had any association with us or the party for years," she told The West Australian.

"They're a couple of ratbags. They are a breakaway, rogue group."

All PHON members had been signed up via the party's national website, which offered $10 memberships for a limited time, Senator Hanson said.

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