This Saturday, Australians will head to the polls for the country's 2016 federal election. For most people, it will be a choice between the incumbent Liberal party or the opposition Labor party, but it's possible or even quite probable (scroll down to 'What Vote Will Others Get?') that this election will see a record vote for parties other than the two aforementioned majors. Chief amongst these are the environmentalist-left Australian Greens, who have designs on several seats in Melbourne, and the emergent populist centrist party Nick Xenophon Team, who look poised to pull off a major coup in the state of South Australia—potentially causing a hung parliament, something neither major party wants. Complicating this further is the fact that this election is a double dissolution, meaning that minor parties and independents need a lower vote share than usual to snatch a seat in the Senate. Indeed, this appears likely. (WARNING: ANDREW BOLT.) Whatever the results may be, you will be able to stream them free on ABC News 24, which will have its geoblock lifted from 6 am to midnight AEST for election night coverage. [more inside]
As Australia shudders towards to its Federal election on 2 July 2016, the Guardian considers the gusto (and desperate incompetence) with which politi-tragics have adopted internet memes. [more inside]
It's on - Australia is going to the polls in its second ever double dissolution election. [more inside]
War! The ruling Liberal-National coalition is under fire across multiple fronts: bullying, tax, negative gearing and superannuation, and the budget. And other things. So Australia's is probably heading off to the ballot box on July 2, after what will be an exhausting two-month campaign. [more inside]
Next Saturday the electorate of Canning, in Western Australia, will go to the polls for a by-election triggered by the death of the sitting member, Don Randall. All eyes* are on Canning because its outcome will likely determine the fate of Australia's current Prime Minister, Tony Abbott. In February, in the aftermath of an attempted leadership spill of his position and amongst flagging opinion polls, Abbott declared 'good government starts today' and pleaded with his party room to give him six more months in which to turn his position in the polls around. Canning is currently a government-held seat, sitting on a margin of 11.8%, and it seems that the metric on which Abbott will be judged is how much that margin shifts. [more inside]
Australia goes to the polls tomorrow. Want the skinny on three word slogans? Want to know about the fabled voters of 'middle Australia'? Are you confused about preferential voting? Aussie comedian Dan Ilic has you covered with #C@%TASTROPHE 2013: Guide to the Election. [more inside]
The people have
spoken mumbled a bit. The Australian Federal election held last Saturday has produced an extraordinary result. A minority government with the support of 1 Green and (maybe) 4 very independent independents will should result, but which way will it fall, left or right? Every Westminster-style government, claimed to produce strong stable majorities, now has a hung parliament.
Even though results may not be known for several days yet, we can acknowledge the outstanding work of the Australian Electoral Commission. (Previously).
In what seems to be a growing trend, Australian voters have spoken a resounding "meh". Rejecting both major parties, the most likely result of yesterday's election is a hung parliament.
In a couple of weeks there will be a Federal Election in Australia. One of the key issues is migration policy, and policy relating to the processing of refugee claims, particularly those who escape from their home country and travel to Australia by boat. This one-page web comic is the most detailed examination of the issue I've seen anywhere in the media.
Just over three weeks after being sworn in, Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard visited the Governor-General this morning and called a federal election for the 21st of August. [more inside]
Senator On-Line (‘SOL’) is a truly democratic party which will allow everyone on the Australian Electoral roll who has access to the internet to vote on every Bill put to Parliament and have its Senators vote in accordance with a clear majority view. They will be running candidates for the upcoming federal Upper House (Senate) elections.
The Australian Federal election is winding its desultory way towards resolution on 24 November. So far, it has failed to catch much of the electorate’s imagination, and the centrist Opposition Leader, Kevin Rudd, retains his comfortable lead in the polls, indicating a change in executive government after 11 years of John Howard’s big-government conservatism. Rudd’s “me too” strategy suggests that ideology is dead in Australia. (Previously) [more inside]
And we're off! Prime Minister John Howard has set the date for the Australian Federal election as November 24th, meaning we're up for a long six-week campaign. With Kevin Rudd leading the PM by between 16 to 18 points (depending on who you read) in recent opinion polls, this election seems the most likely to provide a change of Government since Howard was first elected 11 years ago. Antony Green's usual excellent election guide is up and running here, along with an excellent calculator which shows which seats are up for grabs dependent on a 2 party preferred swing. You might also want to check out the Vote-O-Matic, a fun but entirely disposable quiz which aims to help you decide who you'll vote for. [more inside]
Google launches a site dedicated to the upcoming Australian Federal Election with Youtube channels from each party, electoral boundaries integrated into Google Maps, a search engine to allow you to view what each candidate has said on a range of issues, from immigration to interest rates, news from your electorate, and graphs of media activity on candidates and issues. Australians have been lacking a comprehensive political resource like the UK's The Work For You, and Google has brought it one step closer. Unfortunately, many of the resources are in the form of gadgets you add to your iGoogle homepage, rather than standalone applications.
People vandalising Wikipedia is hardly a new thing but now even the office of the Australian Prime Minister, John Howard, is getting into the act. Website Wiki-Scanner (previously) has traced several edits to Wikipedia articles by the Prime Ministers staff, according to Australian newspaper The Courier Mail. And they aren't confined solely to the Wikipedia entry on the PM himself; there was even an act of vandalism on a martial-arts related entry, in which one of Howard's ministerial staffers wrote, “Poo bum dicky wee wee” on the page. Not good news on the eve of a federal election that the PM is largely expected to lose. Meanwhile, 'new media' is being put to good use at Opposition leader Kevin Rudd's website, Kevin07, where a recent blog entry compiles Youtube's 'best' political videos. Hours of fun for the whole family!
Cabinet: The Movie. Starring Australian PM John Howard and a bunch of chickens. [more inside]
As the countdown to the Australian federal election continues ever onward, the key issue looks set to be industrial relations. The incumbent Howard Government's WorkChoices laws (now re-branded due to their increasing unpopularity) have seen the poll figures for challenger Kevin Rudd go up and up and up. But even as the Government prepares to unleash a major advertisement spree in an attempt to sell the alleged benefits of Work Choices, the new laws have come under attack from the most unlikely of places; popular prime time TV soap McLeod's Daughters, which last night aired this thinly veiled assault (youtube) on the central element of WorkChoices, AWAs.
Sunday Night's Election Debate — National security issues loom large, voters are admonished not to decide to “cut and run”. Medicare and the economy were also points of contention. The greens are being attacked as “commies”. John Quiggin has some observations.