Missing W.A. Senate Votes Would Have Produced A One-Vote Turnaround

The Australian Electoral Commission has released preference information about the missing Western Australian Senate ballot papers which shows a probable reversal of the official result by just one vote.

After the first count of votes, the final two positions went to the Palmer United Party and the ALP. The result hinged on a 14-vote difference between preferences flowing to the Australian Christians and the Shooters and Fishers party.

The result was overturned by the recount and saw the Greens Senator Scott Ludlam and the Sports Party candidate, Wayne Dropulich, elected. This time, the outcome was decided by a difference of 12 votes between the Christians and the Shooters.

The recount did not include 1,375 votes which had mysteriously disappeared since the first count. However, since all the missing ballots were above-the-line votes, the first count result is available and regarded as accurate.

The ABC’s Antony Green says the preference flow shows that the original result from the first count would have prevailed if the missing votes were included in the recount, but the difference at the significant point of allocation would have been just one vote.

The data released by the AEC does nothing to cast doubt on the widespread belief that the Court of Disputed Returns will void the election and order a re-run.

The media release from the AEC with details of the count is shown below:

13-11-08_preference-information-for-wa-missing-votes_aec



W.A. Senate Result Declared

The result of the Western Australian Senate count has been officially declared, in Perth today.

Peter Kramer, the Australian Electoral Officer for Western Australia, declared the result which saw 3 Liberals, 1 Labor, 1 Greens and 1 Sports Party candidates elected. He then took questions about the conduct of the ballot. [Read more…]


Electoral Commissioner Orders Senate Recount In Western Australia

The Electoral Commissioner, Ed Killesteyn, has ordered a recount of Senate votes in Western Australia.

The Commissioner has instructed the Australian Electoral Officer for Western Australia to conduct a full recount of all above the line ballots and all informal ballots. This represents over 96% of all votes casts. It excludes ballots where electors voted below the line.

The decision follows a request by two defeated candidates, Greens Senator Scott Ludlam and the Australian Sports Party’s Wayne Dropulich. At issue is a 14-vote margin that resulted in a preference flow that defeated Ludlam and Dropulich and elected the ALP’s Louise Pratt and the Palmer United Party’s Zhenya Wang. [Read more…]


Electoral Commission Refuses Request For Senate Recount In W.A. – Greens To Appeal

The Australian Electoral Commission has denied requests from the Greens and the Sports Party for a recount of the Senate ballot in Western Australia.

The count was finalised yesterday, resulting in the defeat of Greens Senator Scott Ludlam and the elimination of Sports Party candidate Wayne Dropulich. Both candidates requested a partial recount.

The AEC said neither request for a recount identified “any specific issues” that would “have warranted the conduct of a recount”. It appears that neither candidate has been able to find any irregularities in the count and their appeal is simply based on the fact that the result was close.

In a statement tonight, the defeated Greens senator, Scott Ludlam, said he would appeal the decision. Under Section 278(2) of the Commonwealth Electoral Act, the appeal has to be lodged with the Electoral Commissioner, Ed Killesteyn, before the declaration of the poll. The declaration is scheduled for 11.30am tomorrow, W.A. time.

Ludlam said: “As none of the elected senators will be required to take their seats in the Senate before 1 July 2014, there is time to ensure the result is correct.”

The AEC’s Western Australian State Manager, Peter Kramer, explained the decision to deny a recount on ABC radio tonight.

Media release from the Australian Electoral Commission.

Australian Electoral Commission statement: WA Senate recount requests declined

The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) has released its decisions today on the WA Senate recount requests submitted by the Australian Sports Party candidate, Wayne Dropulich and the Greens (WA) candidate, Scott Ludlam.

The AEC received the two requests prior to the formal declaration originally scheduled for 3.00pm (WST) on Wednesday 2 October 2013.

The requests for a recount did not identify any specific issues, which would have warranted the conduct of a recount and as a result the requests have been denied.

Mr Dropulich and Senator Ludlam have the option of appealing the decision to the AEC Electoral Commissioner under Section 278(2) of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 before the declaration of the poll.

The formal declaration of the poll for the WA Senate election has been rescheduled for 11.30am on Friday, 4 October 2013 at Level 13, 200 St Georges Tce Perth. All candidates, media and the public are invited to attend.

Media release from the Australian Greens.

Greens will appeal Electoral Commission decision

Greens Senator for Western Australia Scott Ludlam will appeal the Australian Electoral Commission’s decision this afternoon not to recount Senate votes despite a difference between the respective parties at last count of just 14 votes.

“There have been Senate vote recounts both in this state and other jurisdictions when the margin has been far greater, and in more than one occasion those re-counts have led to a different result,” Senator Ludlam said.

“In such a marginal decision, with such important consequences for two Senate seats, only a recount can ensure that the votes receive the scrutiny needed to exclude human error.

“As none of the elected senators will be required to take their seats in the Senate before 1 July 2014, there is time to ensure the result is correct.”