Crossroads Group

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The Crossroads Group was the behind-the-scenes power-brokers of conservative politics in Western Australia for many years. They were a secretive group who were never openly exposed by the local media. Essentially they were progressive Libertarians in their ideology with funding from the new-rich mining magnates, and they shared the right-wing power structure with another older group of conservatives from the upper-class who socialised and exerted their power much more openly through the Royal Perth Yacht Club.

The Liberal Party's Jim Carlton as co-founder of the Crossroads Group together with the 'Dry' Liberal MP John Hyde and Peter Shack at a conservative conference in December 1980. [Carlton resigned from Parliament Jan 1994 to become Secretary General of the Australian Red Cross.] There was a split in the conservative ranks over protectionism with the Nationals who were the farmer's party.

There is no full list of Crossroads Group members, but they included at various times, Philip Scanlan the PR head of British-American Tobacco; Harold Clough the mining millionaire who funded many of John Hyde's operations (also the Institute of Public Affairs)

It is not known how closely the WA Crossroads group was aligned with the American Crossroads group run by Karl Rove for the Republicans. [1]