WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange announced Thursday that he’ll be running for a seat in the Australian Senate later this year under the banner of his newly inaugurated WikiLeaks Party, the New York Times reported.
“My plans are to essentially parachute in a crack troop of investigative journalists into the Senate and to do what we have done with WikiLeaks, in holding banks and government and intelligence agencies to account,” Assange told the Times in a phone interview.
Assange said he’s confident he’ll be able to campaign out of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where he has taken asylum for the past year in order to avoid extradition to Sweden on sexual assault allegations.
“There is, of course, some possibility that the Australian Senate would permit remote involvement. It’s never been done before, but it is theoretically possible,” Assange said of Australia’s law requiring him to take up the Senate seat within a year if elected. “But in any event we have candidates available to hold the seat until such time as I am available to take it.”
Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at email@example.com.