Articles on Voting

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Clive Palmer, who is locked in a tight battle for the seat of Fairfax, has called for another election to be held, citing improper conduct by the AEC. AAP/Dave Hunt

Australia’s robust voting system deserves praise, not criticism

Tony Abbott was today sworn in as Australia’s 28th prime minister. The election results, however, are yet to be formally declared, with some controversy surrounding the counting of votes in the electorate…
Coalition frontbencher Sophie Mirabella appears likely to be unseated in her rural Victorian seat of Indi by a popular local independent candidate, Cathy McGowan. AAP/Julian Smith

Lost and found: the case of the ‘missing votes’ in Indi

Following a close count on election night, the result in the rural Victorian electorate of Indi is still unknown. As the counting of votes continued, it was still unclear whether Liberal incumbent Sophie…
Australia has a form of compulsory voting. But why should we even bother? AAP/Julian Smith

Election 2013 Essays: The philosophy of voting

Election 2013 Essays: As the federal election campaign draws to a close, The Conversation asked eminent thinkers to reflect on the state of the nation and the challenges Australia – and whichever party…
Children don’t have the right to vote - but maybe they should. www.shutterstock.com

Do future Australians deserve a vote now?

People tend to prefer present gratification to conserving resources for the future. This tendency is made worse by election cycles that encourage politicians to concentrate on policies that will get them…
While reporters’ political biases are always hotly debated, other biases remain - including too few voices from diverse backgrounds. AAP/Alan Porritt

Whose views skew the news? Media chiefs ready to vote out Labor, while reporters lean left

Most Australian journalists describe themselves as left-wing, yet amongst those who wield the real power in the country’s newsrooms, the Coalition holds a winning lead. But while the media’s political…
Foreign minister Bob Carr is the highest profile of the six current senators appointed after a vacancy, rather than elected by the public. AAP/Dean Lewins

Unelected ‘swill’: how Australia’s upper houses could be more democratic

A casual vacancy in the Victorian Legislative Council has now been filled. The replacement member for the Western Metropolitan Region in the upper house, union official Cesar Melhem, enters Victorian parliament…
Young people have less and less electoral clout as our population ages. AAP/Marianna Massey

How Australia’s ageing population threatens our democracy

An ageing population is a threat to not just the Australian economy, but also our political system. In The Republic, Plato wrote: “it is for the elder man to rule and for the younger to submit”. This concept…
Labor has traditionally had a strong support among female voters, but this could be set to change in 2013. AAP/Lukas Coch

Male and female voters: will there be a ‘gender gap’ in 2013?

A “gender dimension” now envelopes national politics unlike anything we have observed in the past. Julia Gillard’s popular but arguably unfair [accusation](http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-10-10/international-reaction-to-gillard-speech/4305294](http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-10-10/international-reaction-to-gillard-speech/4305294…
Who has the voter’s eocnomic interests at heart plays the biggest role in determining voter allegiance. AAP/Theron Kirkman

Finding a compass on why voters vote the way they do

Graham Richardson, the legendary Labor numbers man, pronounced last week that “if I was religious, I would pray that my long-held view that Labor will be slaughtered under Gillard’s leadership would be…
Often at the centre of electoral debate, what role do marginal seats have to play in this year’s election? AAP/Stefan Postles

From Western Sydney to Western Australia, how marginal is marginal?

In an election year, perhaps the only thing more inevitable than the major parties’ verbal jousting is the media’s obsession with marginal seats – that handful of bellwether electorates that can supposedly…
When it comes to the polls, FIFO workers are most likely to vote for the party which will support their industry. Wesfarmers

Western Australia election: FIFO vote

In Western Australia business is booming for the mining and resources sector. The number of fly-in, fly-out (FIFO) workers employed in the state has increased over the last five years to more than 35,000…
Follow the money: the US may not be perfect, but Australian campaign finance laws need tightening. EPA/Erik S. Lesser

Think the US electoral system is flawed? Check out Australia’s …

In the run-up to today’s presidential election, President Barack Obama received just over $632 million in candidate contributions. Want to know who from? These direct, individual donations (known as “hard…
The stage is set for the Romney/Ryan election night event in Boston, Massachusetts. EPA/Matt Campbell

The insider: what’s really happening inside the campaigns on election day

It is now election day in the United States. You can compare being on an American political campaign on this final frenetic day to spawning salmon giving their all to leap waterfalls before they die. Media…
Volunteers work the phones to “get out the vote” for the Romney/Ryan campaign in Virginia. EPA/Shawn Thew

How ‘getting out the vote’ might decide the US election

Hurricane Sandy will leave more than physical destruction in its wake. Arriving just days before the US presidential election, the storm could have a political fallout as well. Sandy has affected the key…
Some young people aren’t as disinterested in others in politics. Why is that? Flickr/Adam Scotti

Age of innocence or experience: extending the vote to teenagers

History will be made when Scots vote in October 2014 on whether their country should take independence from the United Kingdom. This has nothing to do with the outcome of the vote: the very fact that 16…
Voters in Florida casting their votes through electronic voting, introduced in the wake of 2000’s “hanging chad” controversy. EPA/Rhona Wise

A foreigners’ guide to US election technology

Elections in the United States are run by state authorites that use a wide variety of voting technologies, often with newsworthy results. Some computerised elections have even awarded the election to the…
Locked out: many Americans may find it harder to cast their vote in the upcoming presidential elections in November. EPA/Jay Laprete

The right to vote the right way – how voter ID laws hurt the poor

With Mitt Romney getting only a small bounce from the Republican National Convention, the polls are currently showing a virtual dead heat between Romney and President Barack Obama just eight weeks from…
Unhappy with politics in this country? You’re not the only one. AAP/Alan Porritt

Gilliard Government marked down in ‘could do better’ democracy report

Australians are more dissatisfied with the way democracy works now than they were after the Rudd government was elected, a poll has found. According to the ANU poll of 2001 people, there has been a 13…

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