Essential Report

Senate voting

Oct 22, 2013

Q. Since the federal election in September 2013 there has been a lot of talk about changing the way we vote in the Senate (the upper house) in federal election. At the moment when we vote in the Senate we are required to number just one box above the line, or every box below the line. Another option is to allow people to number only as many boxes below the line as they would like – this means you could number every box, several, or just one. This is called optional preferential voting.

Which of the following best describes your opinion?

 

Total

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

We should keep the system we have now, where we can either number one box above the line, or every box below the line.

32%

38%

34%

14%

We should move to optional preferential voting in the senate, where we can number as many boxes as we like below the line.

33%

39%

30%

49%

I don’t like either of these options, and think we should look into other options

20%

12%

25%

26%

I don’t know

15%

11%

11%

11%

33% would like to move to optional preferential voting for the Senate and 32% support staying with the current system. 20% don’t like either system.

Optional preferential is preferred by 49% of Greens voters and 39% of those with university qualifications.

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