Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament

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The Commonwealth Electoral Amendment Bill 2016 - optional preferential voting below the line in the Senate

Further to the current Commonwealth Electoral Amendment Bill 2016 that seeks to reform above the line voting for the Senate by introducing optional preferential voting, the Government has recently proposed amendments which would implement optional preferential voting below the line, with voters being asked to allocate at least 12 preferences. The details of these amendments and what they would mean for voters are discussed in this Flagpost. The Parliamentary Library has prepared a Bills Digest on the Commonwealth Electoral Amendment Bill 2016 as introduced. Read more...

A quick overview of the proposed Senate electoral system

In an interview with the ABC’s Radio National on 22 September 2015 the new Special Minister of State, Hon Mal Brough MP, indicated that he intended to pursue reform of the Senate electoral system. Citing the need to strengthen Australia’s democracy and democratic engagement by implementing a more representative system, the Minister stated that ideally the new system would be in place for the next election (due in the normal course of events in the second half of 2016). In an Interim Report released in May 2014, the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters (JSCEM) proposed what is perhaps the most radical overhaul of the electoral system used to elect the Australian Senate si... Read more...

Big changes to Queensland’s electoral laws

On 22 May 2014 the Electoral Reform Amendment Bill 2013 was passed in the Queensland Legislative Assembly, amending the Electoral Act 1992 (Qld). Changes effected by the legislation include: a deep cut to taxpayer funding to political parties for campaign and related purposes increasing the percentage of votes parties or independents must attract to receive public funding  from four per cent to six per cent raising the threshold at which donations must be declared from $1,000 to $12,400 which is more in line with Federal electoral law removing the limit on what can be spent on election campaigning in each electorate the publication on the Electoral Commi... Read more...

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