John Cooper, independent Senate candidate NSW, Brunswick Heads
I have been contacted by many fellow independents raising concerns about the layout of the Senate election ballot paper and the grouping of independents in the ungrouped group. This election has raised an interesting situation with the layout of the form and the large number of independents running.
Where in our constitution does it state a Party or grouping will be advantaged over independents for placement on the ballot form? Independents who selected to be ‘ungrouped’ in their nomination form are actually grouped on the far right of the ballot paper contrary to their instruction not to be grouped. This is a section many voters will probably not even look at due to the length of the form.
The independent ungrouped group are also excluded from the left to right position selection and not included as ungrouped in the above the line selection. Many of the ‘groups’ in this election are made up of 1 or 2 members, they can do this by registering as a party or nominating another to be grouped with.
The major parties closely watch the draw for position on the paper, obviously they realise there is an advantage to be on the left of the ballot paper. We need a form that reads left to right then down the sheet with all candidates having the opportunity to be number 1, we are meant to be represented by candidates not parties.
What will be next, independents last on House of Rep’s ballots because they are a nuisance to the majors? As a final thought, will the polling booths be wide enough to lay out the Senate form and see all the candidates?
More stories on the 2016 federal election
The record vote by the Greens in Saturday’s federal election in Richmond has encouraged candidate Dawn Walker Greens to keep the ‘Green’ momentum going across the northern rivers.
My fearless prediction is that the coalition will end up with between 76 to 78 seats in the House of Representatives, a thin but decisive majority. But this is not the way it was meant to be.
Nearly three years ago, on the eve of the last Federal election, this web site warned that a Tony Abbott-led Coalition government presented a grim outlook for clean energy and climate change, and we warned too that it could be even worse than most people feared.
Incumbent northern rivers MPs Kevin Hogan (Page, Nationals) and Justine Elliot (Richmond, Labor) have retained their seats after a knife-edge federal election result which could see a hung parliament.
Still haven't made your mind up who to vote for yet? Well, crawl out from whatever rock you've been hiding under and pay some fricking attention. It's really quite simple. Just match your ideology with one of these political parties and away you go.