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A dedicated thread for WA Senate election discussion appears in order. First, some random chatter.

Troy Bramston on Twitter a few minutes ago:

I’m told @LiberalsWA polling has given Coalition confidence it will win 3 seats #wavotes ALP in danger of not winning 2. Greens likely 1.

Samantha Maiden on Twitter a few minutes before that:

Liberals in WA pessimistic of chances of snaring three out of six Senate spots with likely outcome 2 Lib, 2Lab, 1Green, 1 Clive Plamer PUP

Me in comments a bit earlier:

Informed speculation:

Big win for Scott Ludlam, maybe with a full quota in his own right.

Labor in the low 20s – maybe the very low 20s – but still more likely than not to scrape home for a second seat, thanks to left preferences staying left this time around. Very low turnout could thwart them though.

Palmer United to poll very strongly, but the danger to them is that they finish stranded in seventh place as both Liberal and Labor-Greens do just enough to make it to three quotas each.

The Liberals, nonetheless, in big danger of losing a third seat to Palmer.

A path to victory remains open for HEMP if the Labor vote falls low enough that they can’t cobble together a second quota. One possible scenario is Liberal 2, Labor 1, Greens 1, Palmer United 1, HEMP 1.

Lenore Taylor at The Guardian:

Labor’s lead candidate says voters can’t trust his party, the Palmer United party (PUP) candidates have gone missing, the Greens candidate is DJing, 75 people get to vote twice and the whole thing is an unprecedented rerun because the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) messed up last time. Oh, and it could have a critical impact on how the government gets its legislation through the upper house. The West Australian Senate poll would have jumped the shark, if the state wasn’t culling them.

All right, punters – let’s get punting.

William Bowe — Editor of The Poll Bludger

William Bowe

Editor of The Poll Bludger

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, is one of the most heavily trafficked forums for online discussion of Australian politics, and joined the Crikey stable in 2008.

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145 thoughts on “WA Senate election minus one day

  1. lefty e

    Lets hope the ALPs choice of a worthless and execreable lead candiadte doesnt screw the rest of us.


  2. Bird of paradox

    Tom tfab at 40: That’d be unlikely, but kinda cool. Shane Hill is Labor’s #3, and was the MLA for Geraldton during the Gallop / Carpenter govt. I don’t remember anything about him beyond the fact he existed, which with pollies is probably a good thing. 😛

    This is pinched from the ABC 2008 election page:

    [ 42 year-old Shane Hill was born in Kalgoorlie and lived in Geraldton for many years while working for the Department of Planning. Until shortly before the 2001 election, Hill worked on the electorate staff of the member for Midland, Michelle Roberts. Hill has a strong interest in animal welfare issues, which he mentioned in his inaugural parliamentary speech. He has been government whip since Alan Carpenter became Premier in February 2006. ]

    So, more agreeable than Joe Bullock then. Between Geraldton 2001, Durack 2010 and now this, he sure doesn’t get the easy candidacies.

    My prediction will be 2-2-1-1. Ludlam because the Green campaign has been able to focus on him much more than Labor’s has on their multiple candidates, and Palmer’s guy by the sheer weight of advertising. They have TWO FULL PAGES in this week’s Perth Voice – pages 2 and 3, so it’s the first thing you see when you open it. Dunno how many people that’ll sway round here, but they’re certainly going hard. And the Liberal vote will probably fall, because (a) that’s what happens in by-elections in safe govt seats and (b) the state govt sure ain’t helping. Between Buswell and the teachers’ strike this week, Abbott must be wishing McGowan had won last year.

    Apart from that, I’ve had my door knocked on by a Green volunteer and seen them handing out leaflets at Perth train station this week, got another DVD from Palmer and a letter from the Libs, and I don’t think I’ve seen a single thing from Labor.

  3. Arrnea Stormbringer

    @William 44

    Noted and withdrawn. I stand by my assertion that Bullock’s comments were nonetheless asinine and should result in his banishment from the party, however.

    What chance do you rate a prorogation of the Senate (or the Parliament as a whole) if six senators can’t be duly elected for WA before July 1?

  4. Psephos


    Failure to choose senators

    The Senate may proceed to the despatch of business, notwithstanding the failure of any State to provide for its representation in the Senate.

  5. Psephos

    I’m flattered that so much discussion here seems to revolve around me, even when I’m not here. I’ll be overseas for the next two months, so you’ll have to make do without me.

  6. Arrnea Stormbringer

    @ Psephos 48

    That’s interesting. I wonder then if the Government of Western Australia could not simply pass a bill to appoint Senators to fill the gap until an election can be held and confirmed. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong, but is it not up to the states to determine (by legislation) the method of Senate election?

  7. Arrnea Stormbringer

    Er, I obviously meant to direct my last post to Psephos’ 49, not 48…

    Damn phone keyboards.

  8. democracy@work

    [The Droop quota distorts the proportionality of the Count. It’s continued use has no merit, It was introduced to facilitate a manual count and avoid the need to distributed all ballot papers. Other issues that distort the proportionality if the paper based calculation of the Surplus transfer value and the distribution of excluded candidate preferences. All these issues need to be reconsidered. With computerized counting they can no longer be justified]

    Obviously some “Shows-On” and “Pshephos” don’t give a FORK AND SHIT about the count being an accurate reflection of the voters intentions.

    If I vote for a minor candidate and my second preference goes to a the ALP or LNP 1 then whey should my vote skip my second choice candidate when my fist choice candidate is excluded from the count?.

    [The guiding principle should be that when a candidate is excluded then my vote should be distributed as if the excluded candidate had never stood.]

    This becomes even more crucial under an optional preferential voting system.

    As to the Droop quota there is no justification under a computerised counting system to calculate the quota on the basis of x + 1 (6 + 1) and denying 1/7th of the electorate representation in a proportional count.

    If we do not remove the distortion in the count then, as William Bowie rightly said, we might as well have a party list system.

    As much as I do not support the Greens this does not justify any distortions in the proportionality of the count.

    An accurate count also works in the ALP favor not that that should be the defining principle.

    I for one will continue to advocate for a pure proportional non-distorted count.

  9. Oakeshott Country

    Section 9 gives the Commonwealth the power to make uniform laws for the election of Senators but gives the individual states wriggle room within those laws and also allows the states to pick the time and place of election.

    Of more importance Section 7 states that the senators must be elected by the people of the state. The first drafts of the constitution allowed for indirect election of the senators by the State parliaments which was the method in use by the USA in 1901 and still used for casual vacancies.
    In strikes me that section 11 which allows for the Senate to be valid despite the lack of a state delegation was composed when the indirect election was being considered more than for the unusual circumstances we are discussing here. In either case it is worth remembering that the American Civil War was within the living memory of many of the delegates to the constitutional conventions. They would not want the parliament to be effectively destroyed by for example Tasmania withdrawing from the federation over one or other perceived slight.

  10. democracy@work

    If you do not want to vote for the ALP or a major party then vote for Wikileaks and put the Greens last. A vote for Wikileaks is the best chance to deny the Greens a seat.

    If Wikileaks can secure 3% of the vote and the Greens fall below 11% Wikileaks can be elected.

  11. Arrnea Stormbringer

    Does Section 7 require that the Senators be elected /directly/, or is indirect election permitted?

  12. democracy@work

    Section 9

    [The Parliament of the Commonwealth may make laws prescribing the method of choosing senators, but so that the method shall be uniform for all the States. Subject to any such law, the Parliament of each State may make laws prescribing the method of choosing the senators for that State.]

    Not much wriggle room if the law states otherwise.

  13. Oakeshott Country

    Exact words:
    7 The Senate

    The Senate shall be composed of senators for each State, directly chosen by the people of the State, voting, until the Parliament otherwise provides, as one electorate.

  14. democracy@work


    Section 7 sates:

    [The Senate shall be composed of senators for each State, directly chosen by the people of the State, voting, until the Parliament otherwise provides, as one electorate.]

  15. democracy@work

    Oakeshott Country


    McKenzie v Commonwealth [1984] HCA 75; (1984) 59 ALJR 190; 57 ALR 747 (27 November 1984)


  16. Oakeshott Country

    Yes the electoral act is so thorough in describing the election method that I would think the states could only tinker at the edges.

    It appears the American states have much greater input into the election methods as seen by the Jim Crow type laws that some of the Republican states are trying to bring in.

  17. zoomster


    [Somebody asked where the Greens are getting their money from.
    My understanding is that they are the only one of the 3 main parties who have membership growth.]

    As a general rule, party membership fees don’t make parties much money. (I’ve been told that the lowest payment on the ALP’s scale, which is that paid by the bulk of members, doesn’t cover their costs).

    …and ALP membership has been growing over the last year or so, which is the usual trend when Labor isn’t in government.

    The Greens main source of funding is the payment they get from the AEC etc based on primary votes.

  18. Arrnea Stormbringer

    Hmmm…. then we would be in quite the jam indeed if another election rerun had to be held due to AEC incompetence.

  19. democracy@work

    [Hmmm…. then we would be in quite the jam indeed if another election rerun had to be held due to AEC incompetence.]

    Since when has competence been a requirement for governance rerun

  20. Oakeshott Country

    I don’t really think it is a problem the Senate could validly meet and pass legislation until the WA senators eventually turned up. It would make some but not a lot of difference to the balance of power. TA would still have to negotiate his bills through.

  21. truth seeker

    Regular readers would be aware of my Monte Carlo model to forecast election outcomes. If you want me to run my model with your primaries, just visit my blog and leave a comment specifying your estimated primaries and I’ll publish my model output based on your estimated primaries.

    This “higher PUP, lower ALP” is causing the most open outcomes since I started modelling this election a few weeks ago.


  22. AussieAchmed

    I hope West Australians remember this disgrace.

    Liberals showing their true position on NDIS. Photo of the empty LNP benches when NDIS was formally announced in Parliament.

    Actions speak louder than words


  23. William Bowe

    Perhaps we should be considering how prudent it is to have the prospect of a $20 million re-election being thrown out and a third election held because somebody opened a lid, without the remotest suggestion that they did so in bad faith. The AEC recommended to the parliamentary inquiry into the 2010 election that a savings provision be included for this sort of circumstance, but our parliamentarians concluded that the matter should be dealt with by having no one make any mistakes in future.

  24. Centre

    [Big win for Scott Ludlam, maybe with a full quota in his own right.]


    The Greens…all huff and puff and no fire.

    We’ll see, time will tell 😛

  25. Diogenes


    I don’t think Bullock did you any favours. I expect a few progressives will vote Green instead of Labor.

  26. Centre

    [All right, punters – let’s get punting.]

    I’ve backed the Bunnies for tonight. Id nearly give up the winnings to see the Greens vote fall 😈

  27. ifonly

    Well Murdoch readers must really like the Greens, Perth Now has a survey of who you are going to vote for
    http://www.perthnow.com.au/news/western-australia/deja-vote-who-gets-your-vote-in-the-wa-senate-election-rerun/story-fnhocxo3-1226874687102 …… 36% are voting Green.

    Shows how invaluable these online surveys are.

  28. Centre


    Yes, setback. But no excuses if the Full Mooners do OK.

  29. Kevin Bonham


    If you do not want to vote for the ALP or a major party then vote for Wikileaks and put the Greens last. A vote for Wikileaks is the best chance to deny the Greens a seat.

    If Wikileaks can secure 3% of the vote and the Greens fall below 11% Wikileaks can be elected.

    This assumes that there is actually any point in electing the Wikileaks Party in the Greens’ place. From what I can tell it combines pretty much any policy vice that someone so disposed might hold against the Greens with a significantly greater sense of internal shambles and chicanery.

  30. Diogenes


    Golden Slipper?

  31. Centre



  32. AussieAchmed

    Abbott on the WA Senate election;

    “You can’t say one thing in Perth and do the opposite in Canberra.

    Remember his statements during the election campaign about the GST carve up and WA share. He promised more

    Then look at how that share has been slashed.

  33. zoidlord

    Any update from WA election?

  34. Centre


    No, apparently you can say one thing in Tasmania and say something different in Perth, that’s allowed.

  35. confessions

    It’s only 11am here. What exactly were you thinking there’d be to update, zoid?

  36. Asha Leu

    @imacca 38

    [I emailed them a couple of days ago to find out positions on Carbon Price and MRRT.

    They wont vote to repeal the Carbon Price, and didn’t say anything about the MRRT. From the tone of email and language around sustainability they sound like stoned Greens to me. 🙂

    I’ll certainly preference them fairly high, but behind Pratt and Ludlam.]

    Good to know. Sounds like it would be nightmare for Abbott if they got in instead of the third Lib or PUP. Here’s hoping.

    Maybe Abbott will become so desperate to pass legislation that he legalizes pot! 😆

  37. William Bowe

    [Any update from WA election?]

    Not much Labor presence at West Greenwood Primary School.

  38. truth seeker

    Hmmm… Would imply a higher level of OTH or confused vote if parties can’t get out enough HTV cards?

  39. Tom the first and best


    Ludlam is a valuable member of the Greens parliamentary team. I think he would make a good leader, in the future (I do not think that he would challenge Milne). Removing Ludlam would be of disbenefit to the Greens. And there is divide and conquer to concider (especially with the Senate as it is now). Not to mention defeating him would give the Green haters joy at defeating a Green.

  40. Arrnea Stormbringer

    @ Tom 84

    Agreed. Ludlam has campaigned very well this election, articulating a clear and positive message for the state, and the country as a whole.

    It’s hard not to conclude that the WA 2.0 suite of policies represents the clearest possible future for the state among those offered by the major parties, even if you don’t agree with the policies it contains.

  41. imacca

    Have just returned from the morning stint on a polling booth for lunch, before heading out for the arvo shift.

    Wish that i had the contract to supply the Fibs with core-flute. 🙁 Saw a couple of corflutes i at first thought were PUP adds. Turns out they were Fiberal attack PUP adds.

    Think the majors and Greens are doing ok from peoples attitudes, but i now think PUP will do better than i would have thought yesterday.

    Anyhow, Libs seems to have gone very heavy on the polling place adverts and gotten in early for postioning. They had people, but not huge numbers where i was this morning. Much more in the way of Greens presence than either of the majors.

  42. Compact Crank

    AA @77 Bollocks. Stop making shit up. Abbott has never promised to change the GST distribution. He has expressed an opinion but never made a commitment to change.

  43. Tom the first and best

    Bullock is good argument for Robson Rotation in the Senate.

    Robson Rotation is not incompatible with ATL voting because ATL votes can be distributed around their party in the Robinson Rotated order shown on the ballot paper.

  44. democracy@work

    [ [If you do not want to vote for the ALP or a major party then vote for Wikileaks and put the Greens last. A vote for Wikileaks is the best chance to deny the Greens a seat.

    If Wikileaks can secure 3% of the vote and the Greens fall below 11% Wikileaks can be elected.]

    This assumes that there is actually any point in electing the Wikileaks Party in the Greens’ place. From what I can tell it combines pretty much any policy vice that someone so disposed might hold against the Greens with a significantly greater sense of internal shambles and chicanery.]

    Yes this is an interesting point.

    But in all honesty I can not see the Green vote increasing more than 2% points on the September allocation If they remain below 11% then they will need better then good preference flows from the other minor parties. Much will depend on the ALP percentage. The ALP are better placed this time around and should secure two seats. I can not see the LNP failing below 3 seats. I also expect PUP to get no more than 5% Minor candidates fewer then last year. There will not be a Sports Party outcome. ATL Preferences do not flow in their direction.

    PUP may be the surprise in the bon bon. They certainly have spent a lot of money on this campaign. five hours to go until close of the polls. We should have a clear indication once the above the line votes are counted,

    There are no national absentee votes to wait for. Not sure what the deadline for postals is. But prepoll will change the polling place comparison stats a bit

  45. Paddy O

    just back from my stint at the booth. greens are doing well with people mentioning the you tube video as a factor. Labor doing ok . none of the anger disgust from the last election. no pup staff just a lib anti pup banner that I think reminds you to vote pup!

  46. ___cog___

    Two ALP, 1 Green, 2 Libs and one lady selling cakes.

    That is not my prediction for the outcome. Just who were standing outside at City Beach North booth (Kapinara Primary School).

  47. Jackol

    Two ALP, 1 Green, 2 Libs and one lady selling cakes.

    Fingers crossed the lady selling cakes gets a Senate seat!

  48. Paddy O

    a pupcake perhaps!

  49. BH

    Paddy O

    Seems that Pratt should have made a similar speech in Senate on last day.

    Worked for Ludlam. Excellent outstunting of Abbott

  50. Paddy O

    I think ludlams speech worked partly because of delivery (calm measured assassin), played the parochial WA card and as a green he didn’t bag labor. it was a progressive rant against Abbotts policies that hurt wa- almost mainstream appeal for the greens. it will get younger voters voting for them like never before not just taking voters off labor.

  51. ifonly

    I believe PUP’s performance will be an indication of the shallowness of the voter.

    If PUP does well I am going to have to establish a new party to contest next time.

    Vote for “Lady Selling Cakes” party.
    We will swap preferences with “Guy cooking Snags” party.
    We will have every significant polling place with representatives.

  52. Tricot

    Over on the other post I noted about 10 souls all up doing HTV cards at the local school in leafy green area.

    One Green, 1 Lib, 1 Labor? and the rest odds and sods.

    Very quiet, very low key and short queues.

    Over the road neighbours, are not voting at all – Labor supporters unfortunately, and they don’t really care.

    Mind you, people know they have all day to do this and they also recognise the outcome, one way or the other, is not going to make much difference.

    I don’t sense Labor is on the nose. I don’t sense there is any enthusiasm for Abbott. I don’t sense any kind of excitement for Palmer.

    Who knows?

  53. SgtThursday

    Just voted in Palmyra, part of Fremantle electorate. Greens win on number of staff, Lib and Lab similar with volume of plastic but only 1-2 staff each. One DLP volunteer and nobody for PUP, only PUP signage is the anti-PUP poster from the LIBs.

    Pretty disappointed in the lack of creativity shown on ALP signs. Even more disappointed at their complete lack of cojones in handing out HTVs with names and pictures of Melissa Parke and Simone McGurk (aged and state MPs) and no mention at all of their Senate candidates. Disappointed and perhaps disgusted.

  54. SgtThursday

    Fed and state MPs. Damn auto-correct.

  55. Gorilla

    imacca @86

    I believe the Libs would require you to supply both core and non-core flute.

  56. mikehilliard

    Is anyone doing any exit polling?

    Damn it I’m impatient, you sandgropers should have been made to vote early so the polls closed 6pm AEST. 🙂

  57. Centre

    I’m with mikeh.

    They should do everything three hours earlier in WA.

  58. dave

    mike – could take weeks etc.

    Tonight, maybe a just an indication of how things appear but not definitive.

    Lets hope AEC have their act together today.

  59. Arrnea Stormbringer

    Yeah, as this is a Senate election, don’t expect anything resembling final results on election night.

    And, of course, there will be the requisite challenges to the result if the Libs don’t get 3, if Labor doesn’t get 2, if the Greens don’t get up and/or if Palmer’s candidate (Wang?) doesn’t get up.

  60. Kevin Bonham

    Tom the first and best@88

    Bullock is good argument for Robson Rotation in the Senate.

    Robson Rotation is not incompatible with ATL voting because ATL votes can be distributed around their party in the Robinson Rotated order shown on the ballot paper.

    I’ve been thinking about RR in the Senate ahead of my upcoming JSCEM appearance (which for anyone curious, is in Hobart on the 16th.)

    A RR system with ATL would mean that a party’s vote gets split more or less evenly across a number of candidates, since BTL voting would still be relatively rare. This could create some interesting impacts in terms of the order of candidate exclusions.

    For instance consider the following in a given state:

    ALP 3 candidates 2.58 quotas after exclusion of feeder parties.
    Lib/NP 4 candidates 3.62 quotas after exclusion of feeder parties.
    Greens 1 candidate 0.8 quotas after exclusion of feeder parties.

    In the current Senate system ALP 1, 2 are elected, ALP 3 is excluded and ALP 3’s preferences elect Green 1 for a 2-3-1 result.

    But in a RR system with ATL and assuming the BTL rate is very low (or the BTLs evenly spread) you could get three ALP candidates with about .86 Q each and four Liberals each with about .905 Q each.

    Result: Ginninderra effect; the last Green is excluded despite being closer to a quota and you instead get 3-3-0.

    The second objection to RR with ATL in the Senate is that the proportion of people voting BTL is so small in most states. So which of a party’s candidates get up would depend on which candidates happened to have the most politically literate supporters, or even the supporters with the most time on their hands to vote all the way through. Probably this is no worse than what happens at present though in that as it is the decision is effectively made by a small number of unaccountable figures. But over time it could have all kinds of impacts. It would work in favour of cult-appeal type candidates.

    I think the best way to implement RR under anything resembling the current system would be to remove ATL and instead have voting for candidates with an SA-style saving provision that automatically allocated preferences per the candidate’s selection unless the voter filled a certain number of spaces.

    That said I’d rather just kill the whole idea of any kind of automatic full distribution of voter preference completely.

    A third problem is that microparty directed preferences would become hugely influential on which candidates got up from which major party. It would add a candidate dimension to the current horsetrading nonsense between parties. A lot of people might think RR would be a great way to get Pratt up instead of Bullock but actually a lot of Christian parties would preference Bullock and such a system might even further encourage the majors to put up candidates who catch Christian preferences.

    RR without ATL (with semi-optional preferences a la Tas and ACT) would have merits but would probably be too expensive to count.

  61. mikehilliard

    [mike – could take weeks etc]

    Oh, that long. What’s Antony Green going to talk about then? See he has a slot on ABC24 from 9-1am.

  62. mikehilliard

    I think possum just answered my question.

    [Possum Comitatus @Pollytics
    Live coverage of a Senate election in one state. More power to anyone that can make that interesting over the night]

  63. Boerwar

    Bullocks are creatures deficient in testicles and intelligence, good only for turning fodder into meat and hauling oxcarts.

    The Informal Party has been distracted or it would have run a campaign against the patent democracy theft in WA represented by:

    (1) A Liberal Party that is hiding the real news until after the election.

    (2) A PUP which is intent on buying the election.

    (3) A Greens candidate who has carefully hidden from his electorate his views that Australia should not have either an airforce or a navy.

    (4) A Labor candidate who is fit only for dragging oxcarts across sand dunes.

  64. Raaraa

    I suggest Robson Rotation which lists candidates only without the party name. Now, that would really hit the ignorants hard and makes the parties work harder to get their candidates recognised, even making sure the candidates go out and say hello to the voters. 😀

  65. confessions

    [Live coverage of a Senate election in one state. More power to anyone that can make that interesting over the night]

    I asked weeks ago whether any network would bother televising it. Seeing as one is, it’s going to be all kinds of weird viewing. For a start there’s a three hour time difference between here and the eastern states, meaning it’ll be 9pm when voting closes. And that’s before you even get to the actual counting!

  66. Jackol

    and/or if Palmer’s candidate (Wang?) doesn’t get up.

    I was wondering if, given the Fairfax experience, Palmer was going to insert bolshy scrutineers (lawyers or plenty of lawyer backup) directly into the initial count.

    That might cause any number of headaches for the AEC and result in a very slow initial count if Fairfax is anything to go by.

  67. Centre

    Panthers are home.

    rua, have you noticed that no players are lifted off the ground in a tackle anymore since the Alex McKinnon injury?

    I’d like to see players wear headgear of leather foam and sponge as part of the game.

    Then the Greens can’t whinge 😀

  68. frednk

    Posted Friday, April 4, 2014 at 11:17 pm | Permalink

    Will you once again be campaigning to have a Labor Senator’s election invalidated and the seat given to the Greens?
    Being a right wing hack are you pleading for some help; I think Labors No1 senate pick is doing a pretty good job of campaigning for the Greens and needs no additional help?

  69. Arrnea Stormbringer

    Just been and voted (below the line, of course). One volunteer at the polling place from each of Liberal, Labor, Palmer and Greens. Only the Labor volunteer (with a Gary Gray, Member for Brand shirt) offered me any material – the others were sort of standing around doing very little.

    Many banners from the Liberals, about half attacking Palmer specifically ( http://i.imgur.com/Kvx7CNE.jpg – many of these ) and the other half collectively attacking Labor/Greens/Palmer/Micros as a “mess” that needed “sorting out” ( http://i.imgur.com/nuV2BJi.jpg and http://i.imgur.com/HTCWAsG.jpg ).

    One banner from the Greens, but I didn’t get a look at it (it was kind of out of the way).

    A few signs from Labor, very simple ( http://i.imgur.com/9v2TdeZ.jpg ).

    Nothing from Palmer.

  70. sceptic

    CC @ 87

    don’t get too touchy … Sure Mr. “is it in writing” may not have made it “official” policy but the liar loves giving false hope to the gullible..
    “I think that it does seem quite unfair that the people of Western Australia get so little back for the GST revenue that they provide to the rest of the country,” Mr Abbott said in Perth.

    “I think that what ought to be very seriously considered by the government right now is the proposal that all the Liberal states have put up, that the GST revenue should be distributed on what is closer to a per capita arrangement.

    “This is the unified position of the Coalition premiers. I think it makes a lot of sense.”

  71. ifonly

    Completely off topic (because nothing happening yet).
    Fox Sport 1/2/3 has Rugby/NRL/AFL with Wanderers v Brisbane bumped to a standard definition channel. I never resented the other codes until they made my football blurry.

  72. Rod Hagen

    Why on earth do ALP power brokers imagine installing the Bullocks of this world are clever choices? Just makes em look like utter hypocrites.Or did they think they’d sneak him through last time and just got caught out? Talk about further trashing a brand that is already well and truly on the nose!

  73. C@tmomma

    As a former Sandgroper of 15 years standing and fortunately under the glorious Labor tenure of Premier Carmen Lawrence, but not Brian Bourke, I have some skin in this game. Ergo, you are stuck with me for the duration. 😀

    My prediction?
    2 Liberal (due to early disgruntlement factor rearing it’s head)
    2 Labor (as I think they’ve played a canny game by putting Old Labor candidate, Joe Bullock, with New Labor candidate, Louise Pratt, thereby covering all Labor’s bases)
    1 Green (due to the inspirational Scott Ludlum You Tube it really focused the minds of the disgruntled and distilled what it is they don’t like about the new government in Canberra. Also, cannily, Ludlum played up the parochial element, as Sandgropers think of themselves as a breed apart from the rest of us and anyone who can exploit that will get extra Brownie points)
    1 Hemp Party (thanks to Glenn Druery and just to prove they aren’t all just a bunch of stoner slackers after all, and actually quite smart for deciding to give alcohol a miss in favour of THC & proving that it keeps your mind clearer).

    That is all.

    For the moment…

  74. zoidlord

    It seems to me, this is a very uneventful election.

  75. fredex

    Rod Hagen

    That’s why when Jay Weatherill politely but firmly told Don Farrell to, in essence, eff off, he did the ALP a favour in all sorts of ways.
    I think it reflected well on Jay, helped the party image and probably gave them extra votes at the election.

  76. zoidlord

    AEC ‏@AusElectoralCom 2m

    Polling closes at 6pm. Results will be available from tonight & over the coming weeks as they become available via http://vtr.aec.gov.au

  77. imacca

    Back from handing out ALP HTV’s.

    Think the Lib signs attacking Palmer are an own goal. Most people see the color and his picture and think its a PUP ad. They dont read it.

    Also, i suspect the turnout overall is going to be very low.

  78. cud chewer


    My “bullocks” were most definitely not unintelligent, had quite distinctive personalities, were playful, affectionate and a quite obvious love of life.

  79. Rod Hagen


    Yep. agree completely. But Bullock makes even Farrell look like a saint. Are the ALP really so determined to destroy ’emselves in WA?

  80. C@tmomma

    Rod Hagen @ 117,
    See my #118.
    I just got one of those blinding flashes of ‘Aha!’ about Bullock and it all became clear.

    So, to put it another way. Bullock is there because WA is the most conservative State of Australia. It also has a disproportionately-large Catholic demographic, which is also the traditional base of support for the Labor Party in WA. The Louise Pratt demographic is only relatively new and relatively small and fractured by The Greens’ vote anyway. So, if Labor want to get 2 Senate seats, then they had to get those extra votes from somewhere. The best place to get them from is former Labor voters, of the socially-conservative Catholic kind who had drifted to Tony ‘Captain Catholic’ Abbott. Why do you think Bullock praised him?

    I think it shows that Labor are boxing clever. About bloody time too. The Coalition have been purloining those voters for far too long. I don’t think it’s relevant to them what a Progressive like you thinks about their strategy. What are you going to do about it? Vote Liberal, instead of Labor? Or, vote Green instead of Labor? Whose preferences come back to….? But they might pick up some new votes from the Right because of Bullock, no matter how distasteful some might find him.

  81. sprocket_

    interesting trio spotted at the polling booth today..


  82. Tricot

    Just on 5.30 pm local WA time and have been out for the afternoon. In doing so, have passed many polling booths – mainly at schools – and at 4 pm party faithful were taking banners down for the day in some places.

    Either a lot of people have voted early, pre-polled or gone AWOL.

    Largely a non-event by my observation in spirit and deed.

    Maybe this talk of ‘voter fatigue’ hsd some legs.

    However, purely observational from my point of view and worth about as much as to what is going on.

  83. Kevin Bonham

    From my #105:

    I think the best way to implement RR under anything resembling the current system would be to remove ATL and instead have voting for candidates with an SA-style saving provision that automatically allocated preferences per the candidate’s selection unless the voter filled a certain number of spaces.

    It’s been persuasively suggested to me that this would be unconstitutional at present and would hence require a referendum.

  84. Rod Hagen

    Polls say in WA 63% of voters support same sex marriage. This isn’t “clever”. It sends intelligent voters to the Greens and dumb voters to Libs (why not vote for a bigot with full party support?).

    Reality is, if genuine views count for anything, a better case could probably be made for even the Lib dingbat than the lead Labor one. On a broader level, I suspect many AUS in other parts of the country see this as a wake up call. Do Labor REALLY see Bullock as a leading Labor rep.? I, for one, can easily imagine him siding with his old Lib mate Tony in any real confrontation, rather than the party he has somehow, insanely, been endorsed by.

  85. Kevin Bonham

    Why are there eight votes shown as counted in the electorate of O’Connor when the polls have not yet closed?

  86. cud chewer

    vtr now has 8 votes 🙂

  87. cud chewer

    Liberal +10% swing
    Labor -26% swing


  88. sprocket_

    Palmer is showing a 7.49% swing to him, with 1 vote.


  89. cud chewer

    Now the vtw has 0 votes…

    Alright who pushed that button, eh? 🙂

  90. sprocket_

    ok, the numbers have just been wiped off AEC web site

  91. William Bowe

    [It also has a disproportionately-large Catholic demographic]

    23.6% of the WA population was Catholic at the 2011 census, compared with 25.3% nationally.

  92. Everything

    AEC is not inspiring confidence these days!

  93. Rod Hagen

    Just by the way, http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2014/04/04/wa-senate-election-minus-one-day/?comment_page=3/#comment-1949182, WA doesn’t have a disproportionate catholic pop. Both NSW and Vic have a higher proportion of Catholics than WA according to the 2011 census. WA Labor will need to find a better excuse to justify choice of the abominable Bullocks.

  94. Everything

    …of whom 99% are lapsed.

  95. C@tmomma

    Well it’s changed a lot since I was there 20 years ago… Which it has! 😉

  96. Puff, the Magic Dragon.

    I was wondering that myself, and they are Libs 4, Nats 3, PUP 1, and nothing for anyone else.

  97. Rod Hagen

    So on early signs it looks like 3 Libs, 1 pseudo ALP Lib (Bullock), 1 Green, and a free for all where, if lucky, one real ALP senator may scrape in in the last seat? Sigh.

  98. mark mcdona

    Yes I think that is how it will turn out