Australia: New Senate election looms after AEC seeks an order that poll be declared void | The Australian
Electoral officials have applied to the High Court for a re-run of the West Australian Senate election, following the loss of 1370 ballot papers. Electoral Commissioner Ed Killesteyn today lodged a petition with the High Court, sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns, to declare all six Senate places void following the loss of the ballot papers during a controversial recount. The petition comes before the conclusion of the investigation into the missing ballot papers by former Australian Federal Police Commissioner Mick Keelty. “Given the closeness of the margins that favoured the final two declared candidates, the petition is based on the premise that the inability to include 1370 missing ballot papers in the recount of the WA Senate election means that the election was likely to be affected for the purposes of s 362(3) of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918,” the Australian Electoral Commission said in a statement.