This years election is vitally important for politics in Australia and our democracy.

Our power as citizens is to choose (vote for) people to represent us in the parliament that is going to decide our immediate and long term future: political, environmental and economic.

 

If you care about the public good, action on climate, a federal integrity commission then contribute to good government by choosing candidates who will too.

 

How to best vote in the Senate

The second Senate seat is the most contested in the ACT this election.

Everyone wants your vote. Your preferences are important.

Our preferential voting lets you decide who you want to represent you and if they do not get elected, then who you would prefer next, and so on.

 

To make sure all your preferences count, number every box below the line from most to least preferred candidate. As candidates are eliminated their below the line preferences are handed on to others in the order you, the voter, has chosen. If you vote above the line, the preferences flow down the candidates listed for each party.

 

This video explains how the Senate voting system works and this video explains how preferences are distributed when candidates are eliminated from the count. The Australian Electoral Commission has this fact sheet and a page broadly explaining the Senate voting system. The ABC Election 2022 website has a set of explanatory videos about how elections and parliament work.

This video from Voices of North Sydney (for the recent NSW State by-election) explains the importance of using all your preferences even when optional, so that your vote is not extinguished – the key message is that candidates who may have got elected might miss out because they didn’t quite get enough votes through preference flows.

It makes it clear that voters not parties determine the preferences flow and that it is important not to waste your vote by ensuring your preferences aren’t exhausted.

 

This figure shows the preference flows in the 2019 election for ACT Senate candidates. It demonstrates the importance of first preferences (the ranked order of listed candidates) and then the way preferences flowed. A larger scale version of this figure is available here. A spreadsheet version with all the votes and preference flows is here.

 

This applies equally to the House of Representatives candidates.

 

House of Representatives

Action on climate change and integrity in parliament and government are big issues for this election.

This video explains how the House of Representative preferential voting system works and how votes are counted. The ABC Election 2022 website has a set of explanatory videos about how elections and parliament work.

This video from Voices of North Sydney (for the recent NSW State by-election) explains the importance of using all your preferences even when optional, so that your vote is not extinguished – the key message is that candidates who may have got elected might miss out because they didn’t quite get enough votes through preference flows.

 

Choosing your Representative

During the campaign we invite you to think that you are interviewing candidates for a job, the job of representing you in parliament.

We encourage you to interview your candidates.

Find out when they are at your local shops and go and chat with them. Or be ready for when they come calling.

Use the resources and links below to find out about the candidates.

Critically as well as sharing with them what issues you want to know where they stand, ask them how they are going to act on these issues. That will demonstrate their level of understanding and commitment to working for you and the public good in your community as your representative.

 

Find information about your electorate via the Active Democracy Australia/ACT webpage.

For sitting members, find out what they have done, how they spend, and lots more about them at Political Gadgets. They also have their own websites.

Ask yourself, how do you think they went as a representative over the past three years?

For both sitting members and new candidates. Critically you want to know:

If elected, how are they going to:

  • Help you participate in in decisions about issues that affect your electorate?
  • Let you know what they are doing for you in parliament?

 

If you want your representative to be accountable to your community ask that they commit to vote for the following priority accountability reforms:

  • Require real time disclosure of donations over $1000
  • Implement political donations caps
  • Implement election spending caps
  • Strengthen enforcement and compliance through the Australian Electoral Commission and a National Integrity Commission
  • Legislation to require truth in political advertising?

 

Places you can find out about candidates

ABC Vote Compass / Australia Votes site has a huge amount of information about the election from a wide variety of sources, including lists of candidates by electorate.

Voteeasy: is a platform that allows candidates to make information about themselves available for voters on one website. Go to the 2022 Election voteeasy website and look at the House of Reps and Senate pages to find your electorate and see who has put up information about themselves.

The Australian Electoral Commission has lists of candidates.

 

 

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