Greens call for Upper House Voting reform

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

The Greens want to give power back to voters by reforming the Western Australian voting system and make it simpler for voters to choose their own political party preferences.

Similar to the Senate voting reform in the Federal parliament, which was championed by the Australian Greens, the WA Greens will call on the WA Parliament to make changes to legislation that streamlined the Upper House voting system.

Greens North Metro candidate Alison Xamon said the current system was too laborious for voters, who would just place a number 1 above the line and rely on the secret preference deals done by parties.

“WA is one of the last states to allow micro parties to game the system through backroom deals on group voting tickets. WA voters go into the weekend without any real control over their preferences or who will ultimately control the upper house," she said.

“Instead of having to number every box below the line on their Upper House ballot paper, which in some electorates can be as many as 40 boxes, the Greens want to make it simpler for voter and just number their first six preferences.

“The Greens want to give power back to voters, allowing them to choose their own preferences, that doesn’t require them to fill in every box below the line on the Upper House ballot paper.”

Ms Xamon said 33 per cent of Liberal voters would not vote Liberal this election because of a preference deal with One Nation.

“This means that 33 per cent of Liberal voters will have to number every box below the line to avoid their preferences going to One Nation,” Ms Xamon said.

“We live in a democracy where voting should be simpler for those who want to choose where their preferences go, rather than relying on dirty back room deal by political parties.”

Get in touch: