Andrew Damien Wilkie, born on 8 November 1961, is an Australian politician and currently serves as an independent federal member for Clark. Prior to his political career, Wilkie served as an infantry officer in the Australian Army.
From 1980 to 2004, Wilkie served with the Australian Army, attaining the rank of lieutenant colonel. He was an officer with the Royal Australian Infantry Corps and commanded a company of the 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment. During his time in the Army, he was posted to Australia’s Office of National Assessments (ONA) as an intelligence analyst. However, in 2003, he resigned from ONA due to concerns about the potential humanitarian consequences of the Iraq War, such as the use of weapons of mass destruction by Saddam Hussein or support to terrorists.
Wilkie opposed Australia’s involvement in the 2003 invasion of Iraq under the Howard government, stating that there was no hard intelligence linking the Iraqi regime to al-Qaeda in any significant or worrisome way. He later characterized the Iraq War as being based on a “lie.”
Wilkie has been active in politics since 2003. He initially ran as a Greens candidate for the federal Division of Bennelong in the 2004 federal election and later as a candidate for the Senate in Tasmania in the 2007 federal election. In 2010, he ran as an independent candidate for the state seat of Denison in the Tasmanian state election, narrowly missing out on winning. However, later that year, he ran as an independent candidate for the federal seat of Denison in the 2010 federal election and won. He has since been re-elected in subsequent federal elections, increasing his margin each time. In 2019, the Division of Denison was replaced by the Division of Clark, to which Wilkie was transferred. He retained the seat in the 2022 Australian federal election with a margin of 20.82%.
Wilkie attended St Gregory’s College, Campbelltown, and later trained at the Royal Military College, Duntroon, graduating in 1984. He also studied at the University of New South Wales, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree, a Graduate Diploma of Management, and a Graduate Diploma of Defence Studies. Throughout his military career, he held various positions and rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel. He had also been seconded to the ONA from 1999 to 2000 and worked with US defense company Raytheon before returning to the ONA after the September 11 attacks.
Wilkie’s political views include advocating for the removal of poker machines, opposing the Gunns pulp mill, supporting voluntary euthanasia with safeguards, advocating for same-sex marriage and access to abortion, supporting a National Broadband Network, and opposing the Howard government’s WorkChoices industrial relations reforms. He has called for the withdrawal of Australian troops from Afghanistan and has been critical of Australia’s alignment with the United States. Wilkie has been a vocal opponent of poker machines and has campaigned for gambling reform.
Overall, Andrew Wilkie has had a diverse and eventful career, serving in the military and becoming a prominent independent politician in Australia, known for his principled stances on various issues.
This page is sourced primarily from official Representative Andrew Wilkie's
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