Liberals Clinging To Three Seats In WA Senate Election; Labor Thrashed As Greens Triumph And Palmer Surges

The Senate election re-run in Western Australia has resulted in swings against both major parties with the Liberals winning two seats and the ALP one. The Greens have significantly increased their vote and re-elected Scott Ludlam, whilst the Palmer United Party seems assured of winning a seat. The sixth position looks likely to be a contest between the Liberals and the ALP.

As counting continued late last night, the Liberal Party was assured of winning two of the six available seats on a primary vote of 33.71%, a fall of 5.49%. Senator David Johnston has been re-elected to a third term and Senator Michaelia Cash has been re-elected to a second term. [Read more…]


Scott Ludlam Invites Tony Abbott To Western Australia: “We Want Our Country Back”

“We want our country back,” Greens Senator Scott Ludlam has told Tony Abbott, during a speech to the Senate in which he invited the prime minister to visit Western Australia during the Senate election campaign.

Ludlam

Ludlam, first elected to the Senate in 2007, is facing a difficult re-election campaign for the April 5 re-run of last year’s Senate election in Western Australia.

Ludlam advised Abbott “to leave your excruciatingly boring three-word slogans at home”. He listed a series of issues – Manus Island, the ABC, homophobia, working conditions, the shark cull and the NBN – to warn Abbott not to take the votes of Western Australians for granted. [Read more…]


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…]


Greens And Sports Party Prevail In WA Senate Count; Next Stop Court Of Disputed Returns

The Greens and Sports Party candidates have prevailed in the recount of the Western Australian Senate election but their success may be shortlived as a legal challenge to the result looms.

The official recount concluded today after the Australian Electoral Commission computer conducted a full distribution of preferences. The Australian Sports Party candidate, Wayne Dropulich, was elected to the fifth position, whilst Greens Senator Scott Ludlam was re-elected to the final position.

Ludlam

Dropulich and Ludlam missed out in the first count. A 14-vote margin in one of the distributions led to the ALP’s Louise Pratt being re-elected and the Palmer United Party picking up a seat. The recount has overturned that result. [Read more…]


AEC Loses 1,375 Votes In WA Senate Count; Mick Keelty To Investigate

There has been an extraordinary development in the Western Australian Senate count, with 1,375 votes missing and Mick Keelty, the former Federal Police Commissioner, called in to investigate.

KeeltyThe Australian Electoral Commission says 1,375 votes “could not be located, rechecked or verified”. The total included 120 informal votes and 1,255 formal above-the-line ballots.

The Electoral Commissioner, Ed Killesteyn, described the lost ballot papers as a “serious administrative issue”. He said he had reassured himself “that exhaustive efforts have been made to find the missing ballots at all premises where WA Senate votes were stored or moved during the 2013 federal election”. [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…]