Canberra's inner north is home to nine of the 15 Greens candidates for the 2016 election, a quirk in the line-up that the party insists will not diminish its focus on local issues across the city.
Every one of the five lead candidates – the people most likely to be elected in any of the electorates – lives in the inner north.
The lead candidates are:
- Michael Mazengarb, of O'Connor, who tops the party's list in the Tuggeranong electorate;
- Indra Esguerra, of Hackett, who seeks to represent Belconnen;
- Caroline Le Couteur, of Downer, who is standing in Woden-Weston;
- Veronica Wensing, of Hackett (and shortly moving to Watson), who is standing in Gungahlin;
- Leader Shane Rattenbury, of Braddon, who lives in the city seat he hopes to retain at the next election.
The Greens regard Mr Rattenbury's city seat, the Woden-Weston seat and the Belconnen seat as their best chances at the next election.
The other inner north residents in the Greens line up are Richard Merzian, of O'Connor, and Jason Chappel, of Turner, both of whom are standing in Belconnen; and Rebecca Vassarotti, of Dickson, and Jillian Thomsen, of Reid, who are both standing in the inner-city seat in which they live.
Mr Rattenbury has welcomed the balance of men and women in the Greens line-up and dismissed questions about candidates not living in their electorate.
"If a candidate's strongest claim is that they live in a particular suburb, I think the voters are going to look at that pretty sceptically," he said. "I think the voters are a bit more sophisticated than that, they want to know what you believe in, what your values are, and what you're going to do for them in the future of the Assembly, not what your postcode is."
Mr Rattenbury said he had lived in Richardson, Kambah, Yarralumla, Holder, Cook, Macquarie and Braddon over more than 30 years.
"So I've lived in each of the major town centres except for Gungahlin in the time that I've lived in Canberra and many of our candidates are in the same boat ...
"We all have connections across the city. I've got family living in two other electorates to the electorate I'm running for. We're not that big a town."
Nor did Mr Rattenbury see significance in the inner north bent.
"I don't draw any great conclusions out of that." he said. "All sorts of people vote for the Greens for a range of reasons, whether it's a policy position, whether it's because they share our values. Right across the city people are voting Green. I don't pigeon-hole people in that way."
The inner north booths were consistently the strongest for the Greens at the last election, with the party winning 20 per cent or more of the vote in suburbs such as North Ainslie, Downer, the city, Lyneham, Watson and Turner, compared with an overall average of 11 per cent.
In the 2013 Senate elections, the Greens out-polled any other party in a number of the inner booths, including Turner, where the party secured an astonishing 41 per cent of first-preference votes. Other Green strongholds in the Senate vote include North Ainslie (39 per cent), Lyneham (37 per cent), the city (36 per cent), Reid (34 per cent), and O'Connor (32 per cent).
Ms Le Couteur said while she lives in Downer now, she had lived "twice as long" in Garran.
"An awful lot of things that are done in the Assembly are relevant to the whole of Canberra ... education, health, climate change policy, public transport, this is Canberra wide, it's not down to one street corner," she said.
"Each electorate does have its own issues. I think it's important that the members represent the different issues of the electorate and obviously we are all going to spend a lot of time in our electorates and get to know the issues there.
"But over the years, Canberra's had a tradition of some MLAs not living in their electorates. This is nothing new."
The other Greens candidates are:
Murrumbidgee (Woden-Weston): Jennifer Faerber Wright; and Emma Davidson, of Hughes.
Brindabella (Tuggeranong): Ben Murphy, of Weston Creek; and Johnathan Davis, of Calwell.
Yerrabi (Gungahlin): Andrew Braddock, of Bonner; and Tobias Holm, of Bruce, soon moving to Nicholls.