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Broken Promises and Stolen Senate Seats (Read 23644 times)
Bam
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Re: Broken Promises and Stolen Senate Seats
Reply #45 - Apr 25th, 2017 at 10:45pm
 
freediver wrote on Apr 8th, 2017 at 8:21am:
This particular issue is about how six year senate terms are allocated after a double dissolution election. It will probably take a referendum to resolve adequately.

From the Constitution:
Quote:
13. Rotation of senators

As soon as may be after the Senate first meets, and after each first meeting of the Senate following a dissolution thereof, the Senate shall divide the senators chosen for each State into two classes, as nearly equal in number as practicable; and the places of the senators of the first class shall become vacant at the expiration of three years, and the places of those of the second class at the expiration of six years, from the beginning of their term of service; and afterwards the places of senators shall become vacant at the expiration of six years from the beginning of their term of service.

The election to fill vacant places shall be made within one year before the places are to become vacant.

For the purposes of this section the term of service of a senator shall be taken to begin on the first day of July following the day of his election, except in the cases of the first election and of the election next after any dissolution of the Senate, when it shall be taken to begin on the first day of July preceding the day of his election.

Note the highlighted part. According to the Constitution, the Senate chooses how to divide itself into "two classes" but the Constitution does not specify how this division is to be done. Each new Senate can basically divide itself as it pleases.

I agree that a referendum is needed to resolve this. The Senate shouldn't have free choice on the procedure for division. The exact procedure for allocating Senators - the recount method - should be inserted into the Constitution so as to bind all future Senates to this fair method.
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Re: Broken Promises and Stolen Senate Seats
Reply #46 - Apr 26th, 2017 at 5:19pm
 
I don't think we should make any constitutional change overly prescriptive. The current version is what allowed the shift from the order elected to the recount method. Otherwise it probably would have never gotten off the ground. All that is necessary is a clause stating that the method for allocating Senators must be publicly known prior to the election. This would effectively bind the Senate to Senate resolutions.
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The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man - George Bernard Shaw
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Re: Broken Promises and Stolen Senate Seats
Reply #47 - Apr 26th, 2017 at 6:36pm
 
From the AEC website home page - it is still before the court, so there is no official outcome yet. Not sure how everyone seems to know the outcome anyway.

Topic of public interest
Senate vacancy South Australia
As directed by the High Court, the AEC conducted a special count of South Australian senate ballot papers at the AEC state office in Adelaide on Thursday 13 April 2017.

The High Court also directed the Australian Electoral Officer for South Australia to provide the result of the special count to the Court for its consideration.   

The AEC does not declare the outcome of the special count, this being a matter for the Court.  Accordingly, the AEC will not be issuing any public announcement while this matter is before the Court.

On 5 April 2017, the High Court of Australia sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns determined that Mr Robert (Bob) Day was disqualified from nominating for the 2016 South Australian Senate election due to the operation of section 44 of the Constitution.
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The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man - George Bernard Shaw
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