The Aston by-election was caused by the death of the Liberal member, Peter Nugent, on April 24, 2001.
In 1998, Nugent’s two-party-preferred margin was 4.24%.
The by-election was by Chris Pearce for the Liberal Party with 50.58% of the two-party vote. There was a two-party swing of 3.66% against the Liberal Party. The Liberal Party primary vote declined by 7.76% to 40.73%. The ALP’s primary vote also fell by 1.55% to 36.96%.
The by-election was held in the wake of several months of bad electoral news for the Howard government. The coalition had been soundly defeated in the Western Australian and Queensland State elections in February and had lost the Ryan by-election in March.
The government had implemented a number of policy changes after these defeats. The media and the Opposition accused it of performing “backflips”. Opinion polls consistently showed the government trailing the ALP and there was a developing expectation that the government would be defeated in the general election.
Fifteen candidates nominated for the by-election. A draw was held on July 15 to determine positions on the ballot paper.
Some candidates appeared as independents, even though they represented minor political parties, because they have failed to register the names of 500 members of their parties with the Australian Electoral Commission. Registration entitles candidates to have their party designation appear beside their names on the ballot paper.
|Aston By-Election – July 14|
|Peter O’LOUGHLIN||Independent – but representing the Lower Excise on Fuel and Beer Party|
|Mark WARD||Independent – but representing People Power|
|Mark SLOAN||Independent – but representing No GST Party|
|Mick KIR||Australian Greens|
|Doug MITCHELL||Citizens Electoral Council|
|Luke James Chamberlain||Liberals For Forests|
|Pierre Harcourt||Australian Democrats|
|June Scott||One Nation|
|Josephine COX||Independent – but representing Socialist Alliance|
|Tim PETHERBRIDGE||Independent – but representing Hope Party|
The final results of the by-election were:
|Aston By-Election – July 14|
|Luke James Chamberlain||Liberals For Forests||679||0.87||+0.87|
|Pierre Harcourt||Australian Democrats||6,269||8.07||+0.54|
|June Scott||One Nation||1,369||1.76||-1.13|
|Josephine COX||Socialist Alliance||329||0.42||+0.42|
|Two Candidate Preferred|
Aston By-Election News
- Jul 25: Aston By-Election Result Finalised
- Jul 24: Beazley Pledges Not To Sell Telstra
- Jul 21: We’re Back In The Game, Howard Tells Liberals
- Jul 19: Liberal Party Wins Aston By-Election
- Jul 17: Liberals Increase Lead In Aston
- Jul 15: Liberals Take 48-Vote Lead In Aston
- Jul 14: Labor Clings To Narrowest Of Leads In Aston
- Jul 14: ALP Objects To Liberal How-To-Vote Card
- Jun 16: 15 Candidates In Aston By-Election; Preferences Crucial
- Jun 16: HEMP Party To Contest Aston By-Election
- May 24: Aston By-Election To Be Held On July 14
- May 14: Buying Votes In Aston
- May 14: Socialist Alliance To Contest Aston By-Election
- Apr 24: More Trouble For Howard: By-Election In Aston
Map of the Aston Electorate