There’s a Federal election real soon now. The Senate ballot paper is huge, even in Western Australia. With many new parties in the game, it may be difficult to see at a glance what sort of relationships exist between parties.
I wanted to see what would happen if one voted above the line so I drew a diagram showing where each of the official party “tickets” (available via the Australian Electoral Commission) would direct preferences. That effectively fills in the ballot paper below the line on behalf of the voter who puts a lonely 1 in the box above the line for that party.
Update 2013-09-06: A review this fine morning has revealed that one party has three (3) divergent tickets. That is shown in the updated chart by the use of colours.
The chart is my own work, based on AEC information. It’s unofficial. Not endorsed by any political party or the AEC. I was very careful in transferring the information from the AEC site into the chart, but I may have made a misteak or three.
The chart was constructed (in Inkscape, if you must know) by going through each of the official party tickets and seeing where the preferences went next after their own numbers. I drew arrow pointing to their next preferred party.
The criss-crossed lines weren’t very helpful so I rearranged the parties into clusters around the party or parties to which preferences would eventually flow.
It’s a shame that the AEC doesn’t publish a similar chart. And I’m cheesed off that none of the usual media outlets has bothered with such a representation to fill the vacuum.
Take a look at the chart. If you don’t like the way that preferences would flow then vote below the line, numbering each candidate in order of your preference.
P.S.: I’m not volunteering to draw a chart for other States.
Final Note: Obviously playing the game and being a preferences bucket for a lot of minor parties gets one a seat in the Senate. And who better to play the rules to the limit but the Australian Sports Party.