Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Thousands of votes 'quarantined' by AEC in two electorates

In a federal election where the two major parties have virtually tied, the Australian Electoral Commission has announced that hundreds, and even thousands, of votes in two electorates will not be counted because they had 'not been handled in accordance with the provisions of the Commonwealth Electoral Act'.

The AEC website reports that 'legal advice has been received which means that 2,977 early votes cast for the Division of Boothby will not be included in the count' and separately, that '452 early votes cast for the Division of Flynn will not be included in the count'.

Boothby in SA was held by Liberal Andrew Southcott and his lead in the count was reduced by 339 votes because of the quarantining of votes from the Oaklands Park Early Voting Centre.

Although the AEC says this has not changed the position of candidates in terms of the two party preferred position, it has made it nail-bitingly close 50.81 to Liberal, 49.19 to Labor.

The Flynn result is not as close and less votes were involved.

The Electoral Commissioner, Ed Killesteyn said that this is a serious matter that has resulted in affected voters not having their votes counted.

Read the AEC's statements and see the electorate results.

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