An international team of experts have confirmed that the Queensland Senate Count had elected the wrong persons. The fault lies in the system used to determine the proportional results. Analysis performed by the OpenSTV project team has indicated that Greens Candidate, Larisa Walters, should have been elected to the Senate instead of ALP’s third candidate. The OpenSTV count confirms the early analysis we had performed using a reiterative counting system such as Wright or Meek.
The Australian Parliament’s Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters (JSCEM) is currently considering issues surrounding the method of counting proportional votes in Australia to make it more accurate.
The Australian Electoral Commission was asked by the JSCEM to report back to the committee to confirm the different outcome in the Queensland Results.
Whilst the AEC had the facilities and contacts to undertake detailed analysis they failed to provide the committee with the information requested. Instead the AEC provided a lame excuse to do nothing claiming that the system proposed has not been tried before and that all systems in use can provide a different outcome.
Whilst this is true it is still no excuse for the AEC to not undertake a full analsysis and review of the system currently in place. It has opted to keep the JSCEM in the dark in order for it to not act to correct tthe mistakes in the system. If Australia waited for an alternative system to be used somewhere else Australia would not have adopted preferential voting in the first place or above the line voting. Innovation and professionalism is lacking in the top end of the AEC administration.
The current system used to elect Australia’s Senate, Victoria’s Upper House and Local Council elections is seriously flawed in that it does not reflect the voters intentions. The counting system thats currently in place was designed to facilitate a manual count, a system that was a trade off between accuracy and simplicity.
With the advent and use of computer based technology there is no longer an excuse to maintain the outdated flawed counting system.
The AEC should not wimp out and provide a feeble excuse to do nothing. Clearly the system is flawed and must be changed. Innovation not complacency is required.
The AEC is normally a very professional and responsive organisation but in this instance the AEC has failed in its duty to the Australian People.
The JSCEM must again request the AEC to do its job and report in detail the proposed alternatives that should be implemented.