State seat swaps look set to bring House back to 150

33

Once every three years, one year after the first sitting of parliament following the election, the latest population estimates are used to determine the entitlement of seats in the House of Representatives for each state.

In 2017, Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory each gained an extra electorate, while South Australia lost a seat, leading to a net increase of one seat from 150 to 151.

The next entitlement is due in July 2020, and the latest population figures suggest Victoria is set to gain yet another electorate (its 39th), while Western Australia is set to lose its 16th seat, and the Northern Territory would be reduced to one seat, for a total of 150.

The Parliamentary Library has published a paper outlining the timeline for the next redistribution and making rough projections about the likely population estimates. The December 2019 population figures will likely be the most recent information when the entitlement is calculated in July 2020, so they have projected population growth forward from December 2018 to December 2019.

The following table shows how many quotas each state and territory had as of December 2016 (which was used for the 2017 entitlement), in December 2018 (the most recent) and the projection for December 2019.

StateDec 2016Dec 2018Dec 2019 projection
New South Wales47.3247.2847.24
Victoria37.8938.3538.55
Queensland29.6429.6929.74
Western Australia15.5815.3215.21
South Australia10.4210.2410.16
Tasmania3.153.123.11
Australian Capital Territory2.542.492.51
Northern Territory1.501.441.43

Victoria’s population is growing a lot faster than the rest of the country, while Queensland is growing more slowly, and every other state is falling backwards (although every jurisdiction is still experiencing a growing population).

It now looks like Victoria will gain a 39th seat, on top of the 38th they gained before the last election. Western Australia is very clearly on track to lose the 16th seat they gained before the 2016 election.

The Northern Territory is also looking set to lose its second seat. The NT also dropped below the quota in the 2002 entitlement, just after the territory received a second seat for the first time at the 2001 election, which triggered legislation in the parliament to protect the NT’s second seat. This wasn’t supported, with the parliament instead passing legislation allowing for a ‘margin of error’ where a state falls just short of the population needed for an additional seat.

The NT only just fell short in 2002 (by 295 people), whereas it looks set to fall much further short in 2020 (more like 4700), so unless the parliament was to legislate a minimum number of two MPs for each territory (in the same way that the constitution gives a minimum of five for Tasmania) it looks likely that the NT’s two seats of Solomon and Lingiari will be merged for the next federal election.

If the current projections are accurate we will see electoral redistributions in Victoria and Western Australia over 2020/21, while the Northern Territory won’t require a redistribution as it will simply merge into one electorate. No other states will fall due for redistributions in the current term, with New South Wales due after the 2022 election. Every other state, barring a change in their seat entitlement, won’t likely have a redistribution completed until after the following election due in 2025.

Liked it? Take a second to support the Tally Room on Patreon!

33 COMMENTS

  1. I reckon there will be a “fiddle” to rescue the second set in the NT, just as there was last time. I don’t think they can extend that mechanism (adding twice the standard error in the estimated census undercount, which is difficult to justify considering the undercount is already factored into the numbers being used), so they’ll need to think of something else.

    The concept I’ve always preferred (and would like to see applied to both States and Territories) is that in dealing with remainders, the State or Territory would get the number of divisions that minimises the “error” between the average number of people per division in the state or territory, and the quota derived by dividing the population of the states by twice the number of Senators.

    The impact would be negligible in terms of the threshold for the number of divisions in the larger states, but would mean the the threshold to go from (for example) 9 to 10 divisions would be 9.474 quotas rather than the current 9.5. The rationale being that for 9.49 quotas, 10 divisions produces an average of 0.949 quotas per division, while 9 produces a larger “error” of 1.054 quotas per division.

    But the biggest effect is on the threshold to go from one to two divisions – the threshold would be only 1.333 quotas. But I’m happy to make the argument that for a state or territory with 1.4 quotas worth of population, two divisions of 0.7 quotas is more fair than one of 1.4 quotas.

    It would be interesting to see if applying this method to the States would be struck down by the High Court. In the McKellar case in 1977 they knocked down a provision that amounted to “always round up” on the basis that it violated the requirement in section 24 of the Constitution that the numbers of the House (at least from the States) be twice the number of Senators from the States “as nearly as practical”. However part of the reasoning was that the “always round up” rule not only deviated from a results “as near as practical” to twice the number of Senators, it did so without improving proportionality either, which is also a requirement of section 24. So it is at least conceivable that a method that was slightly less perfect on the nexus (it biases slightly high on the total number of divisions) might still be “as near as practical” if there was an arguable improvement in proportionality.

    Another interesting question is whether there is any Constitutional limit on the number of divisions that can be assigned to a Territory or any requirement that the method of determining that number bear some relationship to the quota applied to the House. I suspect the answer of the McKellar-era Court would have been “no’ – that section 122 gives the parliament the ability to do what it likes regarding the Territories. But the concept of “one vote, one value” has arguably gained support since then and I’m not convinced that section 122 couldn’t be read with a corresponding limitation, despite section 24 only requiring proportionality between States.

    The original idea last time of just guaranteeing the ACT and NT at least two divisions might end up being the easy option and has a parallel with each State being guaranteed five, but it does require treating them as different to other Territories that only get a division at all if they hit half a quota and are otherwise rolled into either the ACT or NT.

  2. I tend to agree with Dean Ashley above in that the government will make sure that the NT keeps a second seat. It would be bad for representation in the Territory if they were to revert to a single seat.

    As far as Victoria is concerned, I guess another division in the north-west would be most likely. There’s really only one candidate for a new name now – Hawke will definitely be added. It might be enough to save some of the seats in the east again.

    WA is interesting, as Tangney is the lowest, but most seats in the south are also low. Pearce is well over but there’s definitely some opportunity to fix the terrible configuration of that seat.

  3. I doubt the second NT seat will be saved. For that to happen, the government would have to overcome its own self interest. In 2002-03, the Howard government acted to save one of their own in Dave Tollner. (Labor was happy to comply because they saw Tollner as beatable.) Solomon is now held by Labor on a 3% margin. Why would the Morrison government do the opposition a favour?

    ACT’s third seat must be in some trouble too. The figures above show its quota dropping to 2.49 in 2018. Its projected to go back up to 2.51 in 2019. It’s not clear why. It’s the only state/territory projected to reverse course in 2019.

    Victoria is interesting because the current boundaries are still fresh. There won’t be the huge disparities in enrolment there were at the last redistribution. Projected growth is likely to dictate an extra seat in Melbourne’s north and west. Even if projected growth is more uniform, it’s still the most likely location. One can easily identify areas in McEwen, Menzies – perhaps even Ballarat – to help create an extra seat there.

    In Western Australia, I’d mark Stirling for abolition. Its territory could be divided fairly neatly between its four neighbours. Probably Cowan gets the largest share, which allows Pearce to be consolidated as an outer northern metropolitan electorate. Hasluck and Burt would shift in an anti-clockwise direction around the city centre to accomodate the expansion of the southern metropolitan seats.

    If Stirling is to be preserved, the only alternative approach I can see would be an amalgam of Pearce and Hasluck.

    I think Burt is safe from abolition because Canning’s growth probably prevents the latter reabsorbing Armadale.

  4. I messed around with WA scenarios a while back using my own projected numbers.

    I eliminated Tangney, mainly because I was struggling to find a coherent way to repopulate it. But I wasn’t completely happy with the outcome because it required Swan to have a lobe on the south side of the Canning River.

    Pearce will definitely get a major re-draw because it will need to lose a bunch of rural shires to prop up the country divisions, and that leaves it almost cleaved in two. My solution was a territory swap between Pearce and Cowan such that the northern part of the City of Wanneroo goes into Cowan, while the eastern part of Cowan goes into a new Pearce that also draws from existing Hasluck.

    Speaking of the country divisions… I think at some point there is going to need to be a return to a configuration involving a state-spanning division that includes both Kalgoorlie and the Pilbara, as the old division of Kalgoorlie did. While the sheer scale of that division was a good reason to re-align it, I think this next redistribution will be the limit as to how close to Perth you can sensibly bring Durack, and when it inevitably needs a further boost in the next round, the best answer may be Kalgoorlie.

  5. I believe the constitution only sets out the method for the States? So the margin of error calculation only applies to the territories? But I could be wrong about that. I got curious about whether NT would maintain their second seat under a Saint-Lague allocation process but they don’t, they don’t get particularly close. If you allocate 148 seats you get 47 NSW, 39 VIC, 30 QLD, 15 WA, 10 SA, 3 TAS, 3 ACT, 1 NT, which is exactly the same as under the current system (this is using the Dec 2019 projections).

  6. The constitution is a little murky because section 24 says three things:

    (1) Reps to be directly chosen and as near as practicable, twice the number of Senators (no comment on states versus territories);

    (2) Reps from States to be in proportion to their population;

    (3) A default method for determining the allocation for the States (to apply until parliament provides otherwise), which is mirrored in the current Electoral Act, albeit in determining the quota to be divided by twice the Senators for the States, the Constitution uses the term “number of people of the Commonwealth” without specifying whether that includes Territories. The Electoral Act calculation excludes them.

    In McKellar the High Court confirmed that excluding the population of the Territories from the quota calculation was fine (because the divisor was based on state Senators) and that (1) was limited to Reps for the states, despite not quite saying that.

    However they also ruled that an “always round up” methodology that had been included in 1964 in the then Representation Act and applied in several determinations was contrary to the “as nearly as practicable” nexus requirement (because it had an upwards bias from the nexus numbers) and instead effectively re-instated the previous provision, which was the same as the Constitution and the same as the current Electoral Act.

    So the key outcomes are that while parliament does still have the power to vary the default method outlined in the Constitution, it can’t apply a method if there is clearly a practicable alternative that better maintains the nexus. But the requirement of proportionality between the States carries equal weight, so I think there would be an argument that you could trade off one for the other.

    As for the Territories, section 122 appears to give the parliament a free hand and the section 24 requirement of proportionality applies only to the States. Which I think is why they only added the error allowance to the Territories. I wouldn’t be entirely surprised if the High Court decided that there was at least some kind of limit on how many Reps could be assigned to Territories, based on underlying principles of representative government embodied in the Constitution as a whole. But I doubt that fixing a minimum of two for the NT or ACT would enliven that objection given the Constitution already contains an exception to strict proportionality in the form of the five-division minimum for Original States.

  7. When the Parliament was inquiring into how to have 2 NT seats, one of the submissions proposed a system where the population thresholds for the number of members recieved by territories would be altered for seat numbers of 5 and bellow, not effecting any state because they all get a minimum of 5. It proposed replacing the 1.5, 2.5, 3.5 and 4.5 quota thresholds with 1.1, 2.2, 3.3 and 4.4 respectively. Since the Liberals did not want the then 2 seat ACT to get an extra seat, on the grounds it would be a safe ALP seat, that method was not chosen. Now that the ACT has a third seat, they might (but probably won`t) be more willing to give it a go.

    Section 122 should be replaced, so all Australians are guaranteed representation in Parliament (technically it could all be scrapped by the Parliament). The reform could include reforming the nexus to include the territories, slightly expanding Parliament (around 3 seats with current territory Senate numbers).

  8. Another option could simply be to expand the size of Parliament.

    It would protect NT’s 2nd and ACT’s 3rd seat, as well as bring Tasmania a bit closer to the actual 5 seats it’s entitled to.

  9. > I eliminated Tangney, mainly because I was struggling to find a coherent way to repopulate it.

    Tangney will probably expand to include Canning Vale, which has some 20k voters and was previously part of the electorate. That ought to be enough, or mostly enough, to bring Tangney (and through transfers, Fremantle) up to requirement.

    > I think at some point there is going to need to be a return to a configuration involving a state-spanning division that includes both Kalgoorlie and the Pilbara, as the old division of Kalgoorlie did.

    In future, maybe. But probably not this time. There looks to be enough wheatbelt shires that can be transferred from Pearce to allow Durack to steer clear of the Goldfields region.

  10. I think Mark Mulcair has the best idea, and Australia is overdue for an expansion of its lower house. The only compelling argument against it is the cost, and I’m very happy for the current crop of MPs to take a pay cut to accommodate the expanded House and Senate.

    However it’s in the Liberals best interest to let the seats merge, even though they’re likely to lose out from the other projected changes, losing an incumbent is hard. The ACT may very well lose its 3rd seat if Public Service cuts cause the city to slow its growth, which would be an outcome the Liberals would be very happy with. The Liberals only reason to expand would be if their unexpectedly large number of new MPs wanted a better chance of keeping their jobs (though Liberals are unlikely to rule themselves out of winning a 4th term).

  11. Should Victoria get its 39th seat, it is fairly obvious that it will be located west/north of the Yarra – the split is currently 20.6 west and 18.3 east. But where precisely is the big question. On current enrolments, the seats that are over quota are a mixed bunch and some rural seats such as Mallee and Wannon are in the mix as they have been expected to go backwards relatively but as of 30 June are still well over quota. The fastest growing seats are also a mixed bag from inner city (Melbourne, Gellibrand), rural (Monash), Geelong (Corangamite), with the remainder in top 10 being south east (Holt, La Trobe) and north and west (McEwen, Calwell, Lalor).
    Corangamite will need to lose votes westwards, and Ballarat eastwards (Bacchus Marsh) which will seem that rural Victoria needs to do a clockwise shuffle from Corangamite through to the Alps. Sooner or later community of interest will come into it and some sort of McEwen West (based on the Calder Highway from Sunbury up to Castelmaine) and McEwen East (based on the Mernda corridor) would make sense and shuffle inwards from there. This latter seat could include Eltham (does that get the East to 18.0?).

    East of the Yarra, it seems that Monash and Gippsland need to push out and La Trobe and Holt will be needed to push out with them. Flinders also seems that it will need to lose voters as well. As Hotham, Deakin and Chisholm will all be down, more shuffling will be needed in the eastern suburbs as well. Some drastic surgery might be required – an abolition perhaps? Hotham ? with a new seat somewhere near Narre Warren. All conjecture at this stage but intersesting to ponder.

  12. Regarding Victoria, I think the east/west split resolves easily this time, with the new division in the north-west as others have suggested, and Menzies to lose the territory it gained on the other side of the river.

    The big question for me is how long they’ll persist with the “outer ring” of Wannon-Mallee-Nicholls-Indi-Gippsland. They reversed track in 2010 on an attempt to abolish Murray (now Nicholls) after a bunch of objections, but the resolution then was unsatisfactory (Indi stretching inland, Central Goldfields LGA being shuffled to balance numbers) and has gotten worse since, including losing some of the rationale for retaining Murray as a division uniting the Goulburn-Murray irrigation district.

    Gippsland is also problematic – at some point it is going to need to annex Moe, but I don’t think it can take it in one bite without ceding some ground elsewhere.

    The extra division and short gap between redistributions may mean that the quota advances by little enough that the existing “ring” configuration can be patched up again. But I expect the projection date may be a little longer this time – it was shortened last time because of the clear prospect of a 39th division before the full seven years were up.

  13. Yes, I don’t know whether the ‘ring’ of rural seats will survive for the long term, unless McEwen gets pulled right down to become an urban seat.

    For the coming redistribution, one option could be to create a new seat based on Melton, Bacchus Marsh, and as much of the Sunbury/Macedon area as needed to make up quota. This would deal with any excess in Gorton, McEwen, Ballarat and Bendigo fairly easily. You could then push Gorton and Fraser in to take the excess closer to the city.

    In the south-east, I have been thinking whether Isaacs and Hotham could be re-drawn as north-south seats instead of east-west ones. Both seats are already stretched pretty far in the east-west direction, and it might be awkward to expand them any further.

  14. This whole issue is caused by Tasmanian over representation. Is it not time we abolish this stinking anachronistic device ? Better yet just abolish Tasmania as a state.

  15. I agree that we are overdue a seat increase.
    Democracy works best when there is direct representation and sensitivity to voters and once you get more than 100,000 per member it is just too many.

    My idea to meet with constitutional needs, fairer representation and to keep costs down is:

    1. increase senate representation by two per state ie 12 more which also gives 24 more MHRs

    2. Give NT statehood but allocate their additional MPs to other areas including ACT(see below). There would be a net increase of Senators by a further 10.

    3. 1&2 combined would give us 98 senators and 196 MHRs and increase of 22 Senators and 45 MHRs

    4. I would redistribute about 30 seats in the usual way but keep 15 to be allocated in a PR way ( a bit like the EU system which seems simple enough – but not necessarily arguing for any particular method.)

    5. To keep costs down I would shave a little of MP salaries but also reduce the number of staffers, particularly for newbie MPs and those elected by PR, who do not have the electoral responsibility. (Before too many screams I actually do not begrudge the extra cost of more MPs but the electorate will, so I am being pragmatic)

    6. Also to keep costs down I would also seriously consider having SOME MPs elected on a part time basis where they are paid generously for time spent in their electoral office and in Parliament for committee work but NOT for doing nothing or playing party politics.

    7. These days with email, video conferencing, Skype etc, I am not sure that we should be spending so much money on MPs living in Canberra. Ministers yes, but not MPs. So cut out the Canberra allowance and instead hire a swanky hotel and insist they all stay there. No more Hockey renting scams.

    8. Now as to the allocation of 14 senators to the NT my suggestion is that out of the 14 perhaps 6/8 are allocated to the NT and ACT the remaining 6/8 are specifically allocated to provide voices for indigenous people. This would be relatively simple to do in the NT but some thought might be needed as to how it would cover those indigenous people in other states. Tricky constitutional issue of course.

    Anyway this package should address many issues in part.

    What do people think?

  16. http://www.tallyroom.com.au/38921/comment-page-1#comment-738782

    The additional Tasmanian seats are in addition to population allocated seats, not replacing them. Voters in every original state, including Tasmania, also have a veto on any amendment to the Constitution to reduce the 5 House of Reps seats per original state. As such, it will remain. The same veto provision applies to abolishing states, hence none will be.

  17. http://www.tallyroom.com.au/38921/comment-page-1#comment-738784

    1. Easy and simple.

    2a. Easy and simple to add a state (once a state constitution has been decided upon).

    2b. If 2a goes through, the state of NT gets all their Senators and anything else requires constitutional reform which the state of NT voters get to veto.

    4. PR seats can only be done on a state/sub/state level and still have to be allocated by state.

    6. Outside jobs are an influence risk.

    7. Don`t hire a swanky hotel, do what Queensland does and have an official residence building (or possibly buildings in the case of the Commonwealth) for MPs.

    8. Dividing NT Senators between different groups, whether geographical, ethnic or some other grouping, requires the same rule to apply to other states` Senators. Out of state voters are out of the question, constitutionally.

  18. Maverick
    I find nothing in your proposals attractive.
    The cost of MHRs is literally nothing compared to the cost of their staff.
    Until the MHRs start to have some vague inkling of their true duty, obligations, & purpose, the less of them the better. Most are profoundly useless, stupid, & disingenuous . A total waste of space. My list of exceptions would be pathetically small.

    The territories ought to be abolished . Statehood is a ridiculous suggestion.
    SA, & TAS are also useless anachronisms, & ought to be federated with Victoria.
    Then & only then we could decide whether there ought to be 1 senator for 2 or 3 HOR Seats.

    ABOLISHING 4 State, & TERRITORY Govt’s would save around $40 Billion PER ANNUM. It would also create A COMPETITIVE FEDERATION . Perhaps even one NEW Zealand might find attractive, with all the benefits of integration.
    Keen to hear your response.
    cheers WD

  19. Tom

    I think with 2B the parliament can change the way NEW states are represented, so i think it would be constitutionally possible to change the NUMBER of senators allocated to the NT and the ACT.

    4. Yes absolutely true – so I am assuming that of the 15 extra seats you would divide them up on a population basis – say 1 for every 10 current seats – so 3 in Qld, 4 Victoria, 5 NSW 1 SA and WA and 1 among the rest. It is not perfect but it is a start.

    6. Yes and no. I think that people are more influenced by the jobs/friends of their partners and friends than their own. people bring their past with them too. I suspect the benefits might outweigh the negatives.

    7. Absolutely agree – I was being too kind.

    8. Sadly I think you are almost certainly right. As i said constitutionally tricky but perhaps someone could find a way.

    Wine
    If you have two few MPs then inevitably it makes buying of MPs easier. Buying votes is typical of the USA system and i think that multiplying their senate by three would be a boost to the USA’s deadlocked system. So i go for more every time, because at least SOME will have integrity.

    See Tom’s comment on SA and Tas. The constitution is the constitution and SA and Tas are here to stay. You can reduce their influence in the HoR by increasing the number of MPs.

    It would probably make sense to merge SA with the NT but I think the chance of getting such a change approved is minimal.

    The ACT is more of a problem because if it is part of any single state the others will whinge. It pretty much has to stay independent. You could merge the ACT and NT and all the other territories into a single “state”, which would probably be larger than Tasmania and could make quite a bit of sense but the NT people would fight it I suspect.

    I think the chance of NZ merging with us disappeared about 50 years ago. It is probably a very big pity but it is what it is.

  20. This thread has gone a bit off the rails. On the subject of the Victorian redistribution:

    The rural seats shouldn’t change much. The fact of an extra seat ought to offset the low growth. Long term, I think its clear that Nicholls will become a central Victorian seat. (There’s a reason it’s no longer called Murray.)

    Same goes for the eastern suburbs. I doubt there will be too much change. Though any large transfer between east and west (i.e. Menzies) and the flow-on effects from that will be disruptive. Variations in growth might see a general pull towards the south-east, but I suspect they can be resolved with fairly minimal territory exchanges. I would avoid rearranging Hotham and Isaacs; the Dingley Bypass is a solid boundary that runs through a green wedge.

    I do like the idea of splitting McEwen in half. The current east-west elongation of McEwen is a bit deficient because it straddles two separate suburban corridors.

  21. Maverick
    Thanks for taking the trouble to make such a thoughtful, & thorough reply.

    I can’t agree about ‘buying’ politicians’. The USA is a type 3 fixation nation, & we are type 8. That means our politicians have MOSTLY very different motivations to theirs. The corruption (s) are very different too. Therefore the numbers won’t change the overall outcome. Other things might however, like a code of conduct based on National values, as established by the ANZACs ( a pet project of mine !) This would work because it will be based on the ideals of the Type 8 fixation Social subtype, our national fixation. Same as my Father, & my son. So no one understands (& knows how to manipulate it )better than myself ! The enneagram is inescapable truth.

    Is the constitution set in stone ? Inviolate for all time ? If so what were we thinking during the republic debate ?
    I view the goverment as the largest business in the country. Debatable i know. However is there a business in the world that has not been restructured in 120 years ?? Of course not, & the federation is in desperate need of one.
    As for the future. This WILL HAPPEN, the only question is WHEN !!. Why,? because there are $40 billion reasons why– Directly. Probably double the same again indirectly.

    I find your view of the ACT interesting. Why is it seen as some kind of sacred cow?. It is merely a construction of federation designed to assuage Sydney, Melbourne rivalry. Surely we have grown in 120 years ? The ACT can be “RESTORED” to NSW, & CANBERRA can then “BECOME” the “new” state capital. Then we could move every trace of govt OUT of Sydney & solve our housing problem at the same time.

    The total lack of identification, & duplication, of roles, & responsibilities between state, & federal govts, is the biggest issue facing this country. The dysfunction of our federation is an integral part of this. Things must change. The are no losers here, EVERYONE benefits, & wins

  22. Wine
    Sorry but I have no idea what the fixation stuff is all about. In the USA large donors and lobby groups of all kinds influence the politicians so you get distortions of all kinds re agricultural and industrial subsidies. it makes for bad government. After all if you want to get something through congress you need only to win over by fair means or foul some 51 senators.

    Changing the constitution is very, very difficult, so yes it is pretty much set in stone. You would need a majority in a majority of states to change anything so effectively you always need 4 states on side for any change. Better to dvelop way of working around the constitution and change only those things that the population all agrees about.

    I think that making Canberra the capital of NSW is a bizarre notion that would never fly in NSW or in Victoria. I am pretty sure that Qld also would never accept NSW having control in Canberra.

    Well since i recognize that competition between competing private businesses can lead to more efficient services and innovation (not always) it is also obvious that competition between states can also give positive outcomes.

  23. I think the reason the ACT’s quota goes down then up is because the 2016 quota for the ACT in that table includes the margin of error. According to the parliamentary library, the ACT’s 2016 quota not including the margin of error was around 2.48.

  24. Why not move Parliament House to Boggabilla. But seriously in this day and age most Government Departments should be moved out of cities. Decentralise would eventually be cost effective. ACT If is to exist should have a Mayor not a Chief Minister. Ministry of Education and Health with same per capita budget as State Schools and Hospitals. The Ministers would then get their feet on the ground and their noses from out of clouds.

  25. what is reasonable for the size of a house seat is 100000 now ..maybe 75000 as I think the sums would have been in 1984……….this would be roughly another 25% increase in size………. this solves any problem of nt and act. the senate will also increase in size think this would ensure no one has a majority ever. existing system means either lnp majority or no majority in the upper house

  26. Should this be the case for NT, Then Snowden will likely retire unless he wants to battle pre-selection with a much younger colleague, Luke Gosling. Snowden previously represented NT-at-large but his age might become an issue if it came down to it between him and Gosling. For Victoria with another seat being added it might be possible for the Green’s to win a 2nd seat if the new seat is created in the inner-city. Although there would be allot of boundary changes if that happen’s… The electorate is almost certain to be named Hawke. Interesting that my state of QLD never gets seat’s added. Wasn’t it 2007 or 2010 last time a seat was added in this state?

  27. @Daniel

    Queensland hasn’t had seats added because while its population has grown, it hasn’t grown as a proportion of the Australia’s total population.

  28. Daniel
    Newseat will be where population is growing. Where in Victoria is this? In Queensland it certainly is not Green inner city areas.
    I thought I heard that Werribee was fastest growing area of Victoria.
    Inany redistribution there is considerable pressure to minimise the changes. Therefore it is unlikely that redistribution will result in anything other than tinkering with the edges especially in major provincial cities unless tinkering can not be made to work.
    It is easier to move an outer suburban street from one Division to another simply because residents are not super glued to existing CBD’s. Additionally by the nature of suburbia the residents are less dependent on public transport.

  29. Go Victoria, the countries most progressive state. If some states and territories cant maintain their population they deserve to loose seats. The NT is a joke jurisdiction anyway and should be reabsorbed into SA as it was before federation I understand.

  30. Adrian
    Progress?
    Electricity production importer
    Growing Car manufacturing
    Aluminium industry at Geelong
    Food processing closures Heinz Kiewa milk
    Only progress is parasitic service industries
    And increased subversive MP

  31. There must be a reason people are immigration and moving to Victoria in huge numbers compared with the other states and territories. My electric power never fails here in inner Melbourne and my natural gas stove and heaters in Winter work fine too, I have never bought a new car but recycle older cars and both run great and non of them were Holden’s, Fords or Chryslers. Everything in Melbourne is green (the vegetation that is) and we have a huge desal plant ready for action when needed. I drink a few milo drinks daily no worries. Service industries are just as good as manufacturing industries but cleaner and Victoria leads the way in medical and other research. Finally, like it or not Dan Andrews is doing to good job as premier too and that is why he gets reelected.

  32. The ABS stats regularly update Australia’s population figures and Victoria is leading in growth. Soon Victoria will be larger than NSW in a decade or so if it continues to grow at the current rate.

  33. If complex equations are permitted, the normal relationship between size of the largest house of parliament and the population of the territory it represents is

    number of districts = the cube root of the population.

    This means that, as the population goes up, the districts increase, but less rapidly. This has been obtained empirically, by comparing house sizes and population sizes across democracies and over time.

    Therefore, we could fix the size of the house of representatives to approximately the cube root by saying

    number of senate seats per original state = one twelfth of the cube root of the combined population of the original states,

    although I suspect fixing the size of parliament to the approximately the cube root with

    number of senate seats per original state = one eighteenth of the cube root of the combined population of the original states.

    The constants twelve and eighteen have two components: one is 6, the number of original states. This figure cannot change unless NZ comes in. The other component, 2 or 3, is either the effect of an additional Senator on the HoR (one senator = 2 MHR) or the effect of an additional Senator on the parliament (one senator = 3 parliamentarians, being the 2 MHRs and the senator themself).

    I think either result is democratically justifiable. Our senate is far more effective than the upper houses of most other democracies, and adds to the democratic legitimacy of parliament.

    Representation of any new state would, politically, follow the representation of the territories, i.e. using the quota for original states and then halving that figure for the senate, with a minimum of two senators. This is one reason there have been no new states added to Australia despite the provisions of the constitution: any new state would have worse representation in the senate than the currently do.

    Unfortunately, I suspect it is too complex to be saleable, and so at some point, the Nationals will advocate for a bland increase to 14 senators when they realise their numbers are being harmed most by the current staleness. The Liberals may also see they have something to gain by increased Green representation, since it will limit the Labor party’s ability to govern in their own right – which will look nice in ad campaigns.

    Daniel Andrews has only been reelected once, so it is difficult to say “why he gets reelected”. The Labor party will, like every government during my life, be voted out when he or his successor proposes to build a freeway linking the Tullamarine and the Eastern Freeways through or beneath the inner suburbs. Inexplicable institutional inertia.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here