The recent elections in Tasmania, South Australia and the byelection in Batman have left an impression that the advance of the minor parties has stalled. This is not necessarily the case.
Minor parties led by high-profile candidates such as Nick Xenophon are particularly appealing away from the big cities.
The minor party vote in Australia is historically high and growing, as trust in the bigger parties slides away.
Conservative politicians in Australia push the ‘outsider politics’ theory to bring disenchanted voters back into the tent.
The 'yes' vote disproves that the rise of the minor party vote is the result of a cultural backlash from people who reject the progressive agenda, including the expansion of rights for minorities.
In March, the government passed sweeping changes to the way Australians elect their senators.
The new Senate is representative of the wide range of views in Australia – and far more so than the House of Representatives.
Many voters feel the major parties aren’t listening, which can be part of the appeal of populist candidates such as One Nation’s Pauline Hanson.
Watch Anne Tiernan and Duncan McDonnell discuss the popularity of minor parties and independents in this election – including what the Nick Xenophon Team learnt from the Palmer United Party.
Liberal Democrat senator David Leyonhjelm says the government has been appallingly bad at negotiating with the crossbench.
The government’s changes to the Senate voting system will almost certainly pass with the support of the Greens and Nick Xenophon.
What are the government's proposed changes to the way the Senate is elected? And how will they affect us as voters?
Senate elections can give parties other than Labor, Liberal and National a chance of winning a seat.
Those who do understand the Senate voting system have the potential to wield some influence both in its conduct and in debates about how it might be reformed.
It was a novelty when Conservative leader David Cameron had to enlist Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg’s support to govern, but Britons may have to get used to minority government.
The UK is poised for another minority government, this time possibly with a hung parliament. Australia's long experience of such arrangements offers lessons in how to manage minority government.
The UK general election could go either way. The one certainty is that the numbers of seats won won’t match the votes for each party.
This week the "mother of parliaments" faces a general election in the UK. The 'first past the post' electoral system means we can't predict the result with certainty, nor expect it to match the vote.
New South Wales Premier Mike Baird looks likely to keep enjoying the view from the top of the state after the March 28 poll.
With just a day of campaigning left in the New South Wales election, the result is already clear. Mike Baird's government will be re-elected – but the battle for 21 upper house seats will be crucial.
Because their votes may be open to negotiation, crossbench senators often have the final say on the form, and passage, of legislation.
Instead of treating crossbenchers in parliament as a source of chaos and an aberration, we should recognise that they play a crucial role in shaping legislation as the constitution provides.
Palmer United Party founder Clive Palmer had to miss the Queensland election launch, leaving it to state leader John Bjelke-Petersen – backed by senators Glenn Lazarus and Dio Wang – to make the pitch to voters.
It’s been a surprisingly muted campaign from the Palmer United Party (PUP) ahead of Queensland’s January 31 poll – and on Sunday, the man who started it all couldn’t even make it to his own party. At the…
Spot the difference! Oh, wait…
Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire
The UK’s broadcast regulator Ofcom recently released a draft ruling that the Green party lacks sufficient support to qualify as a major party. This could give mainstream media the excuse they were searching…
The new Senate will be dominated by an expanding crossbench of minor and microparty members.
With the official count of the Senate now completed, the implications of the contest and what it says about the mindset of the Australian body politic may now proceed. The key consequences of the half-Senate…