Proportional Representation Society of Australia

Tel +61429176725

www.prsa.org.au

info@prsa.org.au

2019-10-14

 

Instigators of Australian Electoral System Advances and Setbacks

YEAR
THE AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY
PARTIES OTHER THAN THE
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY
1892
Introduced the 'contingent vote' for elections to Queensland's Legislative Assembly
1896
Introduced the Hare-Clark system for elections to Tasmania's House of Assembly for the electoral districts of Hobart and Launceston
1907
Introduced the Hare-Clark system for all of Tasmania's House of Assembly electoral districts
1915
Failed in an attempt to replace Tasmania's House of Assembly Hare-Clark system with a party-list system

1917
Introduced countback for filling casual vacancies in Tasmania's House of Assembly
1918

Changed the House of Representatives electoral system from plurality to preferential
1918
Introduced Single Transferable Vote proportional representation for New South Wales Legislative Assembly elections
1919
Changed the Senate system from multiple plurality to multiple preferential
1926 Replaced Single Transferable Vote proportional representation for NSW Assembly polls with single-member districts

1934
Replaced optional preferential voting in Senate elections with full preferential voting
1937
The "Four A's" ploy to exploit Senate ballot-paper order rules succeeded.

1940

Responded to the ALP's 1937 "Four A's" ploy with a new law for candidates to be grouped in columns on Senate ballot-papers by mutual consent and in an order they choose
1942 Replaced Queensland's 'contingent vote' for its Legislative Assembly with a plurality system

1948
Changed the Senate system from multiple plurality to Single Transferable Vote proportional representation Supported Senate PR, but failed in its attempt to replace full preferential voting with partial optional preferential voting
1973
Replaced malapportioned single vacancy polls for South Australia's Legislative Council with a State-wide proportional system, but a party-list one

1974
Failed in its attempt to replace full preferential Senate voting with partial optional preferential voting Opposed attempt to replace full preferential Senate voting with partial optional preferential voting
1977

Initiated indirect appointment by party nomination to fill Senate casual vacancies, rather than using countback
1978
Replaced indirect election of the NSW Legislative Council with direct election by Single Transferable Vote proportional representation, but only after the Coalition and PRSA opposed the ALP's original party-list proposal Opposed use of party-list system and succeeded in having Single Transferable Vote proportional representation substituted for the originally proposed party-list system by indicating an intention to support the overall change at the necessary referendum only if that substitution was made
1979 Gave the support needed for the private member's bill of Neil Robson (Liberal) to introduce Robson Rotation for elections for both houses of Tasmania's Parliament Neil Robson MHA (Liberal) successfully introduced his private member's bill to require the use of Robson Rotation for elections for both houses of Tasmania's Parliament.
1981

Changed South Australia's Legislative Council party-list system to a Single Transferable Vote proportional system
1983
Introduced Group Voting Tickets for Senate polls
Opposed Group Voting Tickets for Senate polls
1987
Introduced Single Transferable Vote proportional representation for Western Australia's Legislative Council
Opposed Single Transferable Vote proportional representation for Western Australia's Legislative Council
1988 Introduced the "Modified d'Hondt" party-list electoral system for ACT Legislative Assembly elections

1992
Campaigned unsuccessfully for single-member electoral districts rather than Hare-Clark at the advisory poll on the electoral system for the Australian Capital Territory to replace "Modified d'Hondt"
Campaigned successfully for Hare-Clark rather than single-member electoral districts at the advisory poll on the electoral system for the Australian Capital Territory to replace "Modified d'Hondt"
1993
Replaced all the single vacancy elections for Tasmanian municipal elections with Single Transferable Vote proportional representation in undivided municipalities, with casual vacancies filled by countback

In introducing concurrent popular elections for Mayor and Deputy Mayor, Tasmania's State MPs have recognized - as mainland MPs have not - the important principle that maintenance of the Council's PR balance of voters' viewpoints required that Mayors and Deputy Mayors have to also stand for positions as councillors, and be successful, if they are to be eligible to also take those presiding roles.
 1995
Campaigned unsuccessfully against the legislative entrenchment of Hare-Clark for the ACT at the referendum on this reform
Campaigned successfully for the legislative entrenchment of Hare-Clark for the ACT at the referendum on this reform
1998 Introduced Robson Rotation for ballot-papers used for Tasmanian municipal elections

2003
Introduced Single Transferable Vote proportional representation for Victoria's Legislative Council, and as an option for municipal polls, and discontinued multiple majority-preferential voting for municipal polls
Opposed Single Transferable Vote proportional representation for Victoria's Legislative Council
2009
Replaced Single Transferable Vote proportional representation with plurality voting for Western Australia's municipal polls
2012 Replaced multiple majority-preferential systems used in Northern Territory municipal elections with Single Transferable Vote proportional representation systems Replaced multiple majority-preferential systems used in two-councillor wards in New South Wales with Single Transferable Vote proportional representation systems
2016
Replaced Senate full preferential voting below-the-line with optional preferential voting, and discontinued Group Voting Tickets