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Australian federal election, 2013

Australian federal election, 2013

7 September 2013

All 150 seats in the Australian House of Representatives
76 seats were needed for a majority
40 (of the 76) seats in the Australian Senate
  First party Second party
  Tony Abbott Kevin Rudd
Leader Tony Abbott Kevin Rudd
Party Liberal/National coalition Labor
Leader since 1 December 2009 (2009-12-01) 26 June 2013 (2013-06-26)
Leader's seat Warringah Griffith
Last election 72 seats, 49.88% 72 seats, 50.12%
Seats won 90 seats 55 seats
Seat change Increase18 Decrease17
Popular vote 6,908,710 6,006,217
Percentage 53.49% 46.51%
Swing Increase3.61 Decrease3.61

Prime Minister before election

Kevin Rudd

Elected Prime Minister

Tony Abbott
Liberal/National coalition

A federal election to determine the members of the 44th Parliament of Australia took place on 7 September 2013. The incumbent centre-left Labor Party government led by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd was defeated by the centre-right Liberal/National Coalition opposition led by Opposition leader Tony Abbott of the Liberal Party of Australia and Coalition partner the National Party of Australia, led by Warren Truss, by a 17-seat 3.6 percent two-party swing.

The proclamation dissolving parliament and formally beginning the election period, was issued by the Governor-General, Quentin Bryce, on 5 August 2013. The writs of election were subsequently issued by Bryce and the state governors.

Voting in Australia's federal elections has been compulsory since 1925. For the House of Representatives, a preferential ballot system has been in use since 1919, in single-member seats. For the Senate – the proportionally representative upper house – a single transferable vote system has been in use since 1949, with optional group voting tickets since 1984. Elections are conducted by the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC).

A 2014 half-Senate election on 5 April occurred in Western Australia as a result of 1,375 lost ballot papers.[1]


  • Results 1
    • House of Representatives 1.1
    • Senate 1.2
    • Divisions changing hands 1.3
  • Key dates 2
  • 43rd Parliament 3
    • House of Representatives 3.1
      • Changes in House numbers 3.1.1
      • Pendulum 3.1.2
    • Senate 3.2
    • Election period 3.3
  • Retiring MPs and senators 4
    • Independent 4.1
    • Labor 4.2
    • Liberal 4.3
    • LNP 4.4
    • National 4.5
    • WA Nationals 4.6
  • Electoral events timeline 5
  • Campaign 6
  • Opinion polls 7
  • Newspaper endorsements 8
  • Result commentary 9
    • Reactions 9.1
  • References 10
  • External links 11


House of Representatives

Government (90)
     Liberal (58)
     QLD LNP (22)
     National (9)
     NT CLP (1)

Opposition (55)
     Labor (55)

Crossbench (5)
     Independent (2)
     Green (1)
     PUP (1)
     Katter (1)
House of Representatives (IRV) — Turnout 93.23% (CV) — Informal 5.91%[2]
Party Votes % Swing (%) Seats % Change (seats)
  Australian Labor Party 4,311,365 33.38 −4.61 55 36.67 −17
  Liberal Party of Australia 4,134,865 32.02 +1.56 58 38.67 +14
  Liberal National Party (QLD) 1,152,217 8.92 −0.20 22 14.67 +1
  National Party of Australia 554,268 4.29 +0.56 9 6.00 +2
  Country Liberal Party (NT) 41,468 0.32 +0.01 1 0.67 0
  Australian Greens 1,116,918 8.65 −3.11 1 0.67 0
  Palmer United Party 709,035 5.49 +5.49 1 0.67 +1
  Katter's Australian Party 134,226 1.04 +0.73 1 0.67 0
  Independents 177,217 1.37 −0.84 2 1.34 −1
  Other 583,348 4.52 +0.41 0 0 0
  Total 12,914,927     150  
Two-party-preferred vote
  Liberal/National Coalition 6,908,710 53.49 +3.61 90 60 +18
  Australian Labor Party 6,006,217 46.51 −3.61 55 36.67 −17
The disproportionality of the lower house in the 2013 election was 12.79 according to the Gallagher Index, mainly between the Coalition and Green Parties.

Independents: Andrew Wilkie, Cathy McGowan


Government (33)
     Liberal (23)
     QLD LNP (6)
     National (3)
     NT CLP (1)

Opposition (25)
     Labor (25)

Crossbench (18)
     Greens (10)
     PUP (3)
     Motoring (1)
     LDP (1)
     Family First (1)
     DLP (1)
     Independent (1)
Senate (STV GV) — Turnout 93.88% (CV) — Informal 2.96%[3][4]
Party Votes % Swing Seats won Total seats % Change
  Liberal/National Coalition 5,057,218 37.70 –0.59 17 33 43.42 –1
  Australian Labor Party 4,038,591 30.11 –5.02 12 25 32.89 –6
  Australian Greens 1,159,588 8.65 –4.46 4 10 13.16 +1
  Palmer United Party 658,976 4.91 +4.91 3 3 3.95 +3
  Liberal Democratic Party 523,831 3.91 +2.10 1 1 1.32 +1
  Xenophon Group 258,376 1.93 +1.93 1 1 1.32 0
  Family First Party 149,306 1.11 –0.99 1 1 1.32 +1
  Democratic Labour Party 112,549 0.84 –0.22 0 1 1.32 0
  Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party 67,560 0.50 +0.50 1 1 1.32 +1
  Other 1,384,027 10.32 +1.82 0 0 0 0
  Total 13,413,019     40 76  

The Senate has 76 seats. Forty seats were up for election; six in each of the six states, two for the ACT and two for the Northern Territory. The terms of the four senators from the territories commenced on election day, all other terms take effect on 1 July 2014.[5][6]

Distribution of preferences have occurred for all Senate seats in all states and territories.[7][8] The Senate will see the Coalition government on 33 seats with the Labor opposition on 25 seats, the Greens on ten seats and a crossbench of 8 – Palmer United on three seats, with other minor parties and independents on five seats – the LDP's David Leyonhjelm, Family First's Bob Day, Motoring's Ricky Muir and incumbents Nick Xenophon and the DLP's John Madigan. Muir will vote in line with Palmer United.[9] The Coalition government will require the support of at least six non-coalition Senators to pass legislation.

Most Senate votes cast in Western Australia were subject to a formal recount.[10] During the recount it was determined that 1,375 WA Senate ballot papers could not be located.[11][12] After the final recount the result was duly declared which changed the last two predicted WA Senate spots from Palmer and Labor back to Sports and Green. Mick Keelty, a former AFP Commissioner, was requested by the AEC to investigate the issue of the misplaced ballot papers.[13][14] On 15 November, the AEC petitioned the High Court, acting as the Court of Disputed Returns, to seek an order from the court that the WA Senate election of all six senators (3 Liberal, 1 Labor, 1 Green, 1 Sport) be declared void.[15][16][17] On 18 February 2014, it was announced that the Court of Disputed Returns had found that the result of the Western Australia Senate election should be voided, meaning a fresh election for all six senate vacancies would be required.[18]

On 28 February 2014 it was announced that the half-Senate election in Western Australia would take place on 5 April, which returned 3 Liberal, 1 Labor, 1 Green, 1 Palmer.

A record number of candidates stood at the election.[19] Minor Party Alliance.[20][21][22] Sports' Wayne Dropulich won a Senate seat on a record-low primary vote of 0.2 percent in Western Australia, his party placing coming 21st out of 28 groups on primary votes.[23][24][25] Motoring's Ricky Muir won a senate seat on a record-low primary vote of 0.5 percent in Victoria.[26][27] Family First's Bob Day won a seat on a primary vote of 3.8 percent in South Australia.[27][28] All three were involved with the Minor Party Alliance.[29] Previous examples of winning with low vote shares include Family First's Steve Fielding in 2004 on 1.9 percent in Victoria,[30] the Nuclear Disarmament Party's Robert Wood in 1987 on 1.5 percent in New South Wales, and the DLP's John Madigan won his seat in 2010 on a primary vote of 2.3 percent in Victoria.[31] Xenophon and larger parties including the incoming government are looking at changes to the GVT system.[32][33][34]

Divisions changing hands

Members in italics did not re-contest their House of Representatives seats at this election.

Seat Pre-2013 Swing Post-2013[35]
Party Member Margin Margin Member Party
Banks, NSW   Labor Daryl Melham 1.45 −3.28 1.83 David Coleman Liberal  
Barton, NSW Labor Robert McClelland 6.86 −7.17 0.31 Nickolas Varvaris Liberal
Bass, TAS Labor Geoff Lyons 6.74 −10.78 4.04 Andrew Nikolić Liberal
Braddon, TAS Labor Sid Sidebottom 7.48 −10.04 2.56 Brett Whiteley Liberal
Capricornia, QLD Labor Kirsten Livermore 3.68 −4.45 0.77 Michelle Landry Liberal National
Corangamite, VIC Labor Darren Cheeseman 0.28 −4.22 3.94 Sarah Henderson Liberal
Deakin, VIC Labor Mike Symon 0.60 −3.78 3.18 Michael Sukkar Liberal
Dobell, NSW Independent Craig Thomson 5.07 N/A 0.68 Karen McNamara Liberal
Eden-Monaro, NSW Labor Mike Kelly 4.24 −4.85 0.61 Peter Hendy Liberal
Fairfax, QLD Liberal National Alex Somlyay 6.95 N/A 0.03 Clive Palmer Palmer United
Fisher, QLD Independent Peter Slipper 4.13 N/A 9.75 Mal Brough Liberal National
Hindmarsh, SA Labor Steve Georganas 6.08 −7.97 1.89 Matt Williams Liberal
Indi, VIC Liberal Sophie Mirabella 9.94 N/A 0.25 Cathy McGowan Independent
La Trobe, VIC Labor Laura Smyth 1.66 −5.67 4.01 Jason Wood Liberal
Lindsay, NSW Labor David Bradbury 1.12 −4.11 2.99 Fiona Scott Liberal
Lyne, NSW Independent Rob Oakeshott 12.73 N/A 14.77 David Gillespie National
Lyons, TAS Labor Dick Adams 12.29 −13.51 1.22 Eric Hutchinson Liberal
New England, NSW Independent Tony Windsor 21.52 N/A 14.46 Barnaby Joyce National
O'Connor, WA National WA Tony Crook 3.56 −4.51 0.95 Rick Wilson Liberal
Page, NSW Labor Janelle Saffin 4.19 −6.71 2.52 Kevin Hogan National
Petrie, QLD Labor Yvette D'Ath 2.51 −3.04 0.53 Luke Howarth Liberal National
Reid, NSW Labor John Murphy 2.68 −3.53 0.85 Craig Laundy Liberal
Robertson, NSW Labor Deborah O'Neill 1.00 −4.00 3.00 Lucy Wicks Liberal

Key dates

  • Governor-General accepted Kevin Rudd's advice to dissolve Parliament and hold a general election – 4 August 2013
  • Prorogation of 43rd Parliament – 5.29 pm Monday 5 August 2013[36]
  • Dissolution of House of Representatives – 5.30 pm Monday 5 August 2013
  • Issue of writs – Monday 5 August 2013[37]
  • Close of rolls – 8 pm Monday 12 August 2013
  • Close of candidate nominations – 12 noon Thursday 15 August 2013
  • Declaration of candidate nominations – 12 noon Friday 16 August 2013
  • Election day or Polling day – Saturday 7 September 2013
  • Last day for the return of writs – Monday 13 November 2013
  • Deadline for first meeting of the 44th Parliament – Wednesday 13 December 2013

On 30 January 2013, the then Prime Minister Julia Gillard had announced the election would be held on 14 September. However, following a leadership ballot in June 2013, she was replaced as leader and Prime Minister by Rudd, who then abandoned the originally planned date. A referendum on amending the constitution to allow the federal government to directly fund local councils, which was initially planned to be held on the same day as the federal election, could not go ahead on the date announced by Rudd.[38] This is because Section 128 of the Constitution of Australia requires that a referendum be submitted to electors between two and six months after its passage through Parliament. As early voting started on 20 August it could not be submitted then.

43rd Parliament

House of Representatives

House of Representatives seat numbers prior to the 2013 election

Government (71)
     Labor (71)

Coalition (72)

     Liberal (44)
     LNP (20)
     Nationals (6)
     Nat. WA (1)
     CLP (1)

Crossbench (7)
     Ind. (5)
     Greens (1)
     KAP (1)

At the 2010 federal election, Labor and the Liberal/National Coalition each won 72 seats in the 150-seat House of Representatives, four short of the requirement for majority government, resulting in the first hung parliament since the 1940 federal election. On the crossbench, one member of the Australian Greens, one member of the National Party of Western Australia, and four independent members held the balance of power. After gaining the support of the Greens and three independents on confidence and supply votes, Labor was able to form a minority government with a 76–74 margin.[39]

Changes in House numbers

On 24 November 2011, Harry Jenkins resigned as Speaker of the House of Representatives and returned to the Labor backbench. Later, that day, Deputy Speaker Peter Slipper was elected Speaker and quit the Liberal National Party to become an independent. This changed nominal confidence and supply numbers on the floor of the house from 75–74 to 76–73.[40][41] In January 2012, Andrew Wilkie withdrew his guarantee of confidence to the incumbent government, changing numbers to 75–73 in the event of his abstention, or 75–74 in the event of his support for a vote of no confidence in the government. In April 2012, Labor's Craig Thomson moved to the crossbenches as an independent MP, and in May, WA National Tony Crook moved from the crossbenches to the Nationals, but did not join the Coalition. Changes brought the government to 71 seats, the Coalition 72 seats, and seven crossbenchers. On 9 October 2012, after an unsuccessful vote of no confidence in the speakership, Slipper resigned as Speaker and was replaced by Labor Deputy Speaker Anna Burke. Slipper remained an independent MP.



Senate seat numbers prior to the 2013 election

Government (31)
     Labor (31)

Coalition (34)

     Liberal (24)
     LNP (6)
     Nationals (3)
     CLP (1)

Crossbench (11)
     Greens (9)
     DLP (1)
     Ind. (1)

Before the election, the 76-seat Senate was made up of senators from the Coalition (34), Australian Labor Party (31), Australian Greens (9), Democratic Labour Party (1), and one independent senator, Nick Xenophon. The Greens held the sole balance of power. Previously the Greens had held a shared balance of power with the Family First Party and Xenophon.

Of the 76 Senate seats, 40 are contested. This corresponds to half of each state's allocation as well as both senators from the two major territories. Newly elected state senators will commence their terms on 1 July 2014 and the senators of the territories will begin their terms immediately after their elections.[42]

State/Territory Seats ALP Coalition Greens Other
NSW 6 3 3
VIC 6 3 3
QLD 6 3 3
WA 6 2 3 1
SA 6 2 2 1 1 (Ind., Xenophon)
TAS 6 3 2 1
ACT 2 1 1
NT 2 1 1
To be contested 40 18 18 3 1
Elected in 2010 36 13 16 6 1 (DLP)
Total 76 31 34 9 2

Election period

On 30 January 2013, at a speech at the National Press Club, Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced the election would be held on Saturday 14 September 2013, although the Governor-General was not formally advised and no writ of election was issued.[43] Kevin Rudd succeeded Julia Gillard as Prime Minister on 27 June 2013.

The Broadcasting Services Act 1992 was checked by various commercial broadcasting media outlets and media councils as a result of Gillard's announcement.[44] The Act says, in part,

"Election period" means:
(a) in relation to any other election to a Parliament – the period that starts on:
– (i) the day on which the proposed polling day for the election is publicly announced; or
- (ii) the day on which the writs for the election are issued;
whichever happens first, and ends at the close of the poll on the polling day for the election;


b. (i) If, during an election period, a broadcaster broadcasts election matter, the broadcaster must give reasonable opportunities for the broadcasting of election matter to all political parties contesting the election, being parties which were represented in either House of the Parliament for which the election is to be held at the time of its last meeting before the election period.

This is interpreted as "equal time, over time" rather than equal time in the same broadcast, and that this requirement began with the announcement on 30 January 2013.[44]

Retiring MPs and senators

The terms of Members of the House of Representatives who did not renominate ended at the dissolution of the parliament (5 August 2013).

The terms of Senators who did not renominate will end on 30 June 2014, unless they represent the Australian Capital Territory or the Northern Territory, in which case their term ended on the day before polling day (6 September 2013). That date also applies to territory senators who contest the election but are defeated.

Members and senators who chose not to renominate are as follows:





  • Paul Neville MP (Hinkler, Qld) − announced retirement 10 October 2012[70]
  • Alex Somlyay MP (Fairfax, Qld) – announced retirement 25 September 2010[71]
  • Senator Ron Boswell (Qld) – announced retirement 21 September 2012[72]
  • Senator Sue Boyce (Qld) – announced retirement 8 October 2012[73]


WA Nationals

Electoral events timeline

  • 30 January – Prime Minister Julia Gillard announces planned election date of 14 September 2013.[43]
  • 2 February – Attorney-General Nicola Roxon announces she will be retiring at the election. Higher Education Minister Senator Chris Evans, whose term was not due to finish until 2017, announces he will be resigning in the near future.[76]
  • 19 February – Greens leader Christine Milne announces that the alliance agreement with the ALP is over, but her party will not vote against confidence or supply.[77]
  • 26 February – Gillard announces she will "campaign" in western Sydney for the following week, from Sunday night until Friday.[78]
  • 19 March – Richard Torbay is forced to resign from The Nationals, forfeiting his candidature for the Division of New England.[79] Barnaby Joyce puts his name forward as a possible replacement candidate, hoping to move from the Senate to the House of Representatives.[80]
  • 21 March – Former Labor leader, Minister Simon Crean asks Gillard for a party leadership vote, and publicly declares his support for Kevin Rudd. In parliament, the Opposition attempts to suspend standing orders for a no confidence vote and although gaining 73 votes to the government's 71 votes, fails to gain the absolute majority of 76 votes required. Crean is sacked from the ministry. At the leadership ballot no alternative candidate nominates, and Gillard is re-elected as ALP leader unopposed.[81] Rudd supporters Joel Fitzgibbon, Ed Husic, Janelle Saffin, and Richard Marles quit their positions in the executive government.[82]
  • 22 March – Rudd issues a statement that he will never again return to the ALP leadership.[83] Kim Carr, Martin Ferguson, and Chris Bowen quit their ministries.[84][85][86]
  • 23 March – Key independent MP Andrew Wilkie warns that ongoing instability within the ALP means the government will have difficulty surviving a vote of confidence when parliament resumes in May.[87]
  • 2 May – The opposition indicates it will support the Government's National Disability Insurance Scheme policy, including an increase in the Medicare levy from 1.5% to 2%.[88][89]
  • 26 June – Independents Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor both announce they won't recontest their seats at the election. Kevin Rudd defeats Julia Gillard in another Labor leadership spill by a 57–45 margin. After the spill, Gillard along with ministers Craig Emerson and Peter Garrett announce their retirement at the coming election.
  • 27 June – Rudd is sworn in as Prime Minister by Governor-General Quentin Bryce, with Anthony Albanese and Chris Bowen sworn in as Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer respectively. Defence Minister Stephen Smith MP announces his retirement at the coming election.
  • 29 June – Greg Combet MP announces his retirement at the coming election.
  • 1 July – The Second Rudd Ministry is sworn in. Simon Crean MP announces his retirement at the coming election.[90]
  • 1 July – Wikileaks party receives formal registration as a political party.[91]
  • 22 July – The ALP caucus approves changes to the way the federal parliamentary leader is chosen. The new rules make it more difficult to change leaders and require a ballot of the party membership on contested leadership spills.[92][93]
  • 4 August – Kevin Rudd announces the election date as 7 September 2013.[94]
  • 5 August – Quentin Bryce, the Governor-General, issues the election writ.
  • 11 August – The first of three televised leaders debates between Rudd and Abbott is held in Canberra.[95][96]
  • 21 August – The second televised leaders debate between Rudd and Abbott is held in Brisbane.[97][98]
  • 25 August – The Coalition's formal campaign launch is held in Brisbane.[99]
  • 27 August – Treasurer Chris Bowen and shadow treasurer Joe Hockey debate at the National Press Club. Later that evening, the third and final televised leaders debate between Rudd and Abbott is held at the Rooty Hill RSL in Sydney.[100]
  • 28 August – The Coalition releases a document outlining $31.6 billion of proposed budget savings.[101]
  • 29 August – The Rudd Government releases several costings estimates which it claims show a $10 billion shortfall in the Coalition's claimed savings released the previous day.[102] In a strongly-worded statement, the secretaries of the Department of Treasury and Department of Finance criticise the use of these confidential costings prepared for the government, re-iterating that the assumptions used differ from the costings prepared for the Coalition.[103]
  • 1 September – Labor's formal campaign launch is held in Brisbane.[104]
  • 5 September – The Coalition releases its remaining policy costings, claiming a further $9 billion worth of savings, including a $4.5 billion reduction in Australia's foreign aid budget.[105] Later in the day, the Coalition releases a policy document announcing the implementation of an opt-out Internet filter. That evening, Shadow Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull states that the document was "poorly worded" and released by mistake, and that the Coalition had no such policy.[106]
  • 7 September (Election Day) – The Liberal-National coalition defeats the Australian Labor Party with the Coalition expected to win about 90 seats in the House of Representatives. Kevin Rudd conceded defeat and announced that he would not renominate for the ALP's leadership.
  • 18 September - The Abbott Ministry is sworn in by Governor-General Quentin Bryce.
  • 17 October – A recount of all "above-the-line" Senate votes made in Western Australia is initiated after an appeal by the WA Greens and the Australian Sports Party is upheld.[107]
  • 31 October – The AEC announces that it is unable to find 1,375 ballot papers during the WA Senate recount.[108]
  • 31 October – The AEC declares Clive Palmer the winner of the seat of Fairfax, after two recounts, by a margin of 53 votes. Palmer claims the result vindicates his decision to challenge more than half the ballot papers cast.[109]
  • 4 November – The AEC declares the result of the WA Senate recount, awarding the last two seats to the Greens and Australian Sports Party, instead of the ALP and Palmer United Party.[110]
  • 15 November – The AEC disputes its own declaration of the WA Senate result, by lodging a petition with the Court of Disputed Returns, asking that the WA Senate result be declared null and void.[111]
  • January 2014 – Justice Kenneth Hayne, in the Court of Disputed Returns, hears submissions from the AEC and political parties.[112] On 30 January 2014, Hayne reserved his decision.[113]
  • 20 February 2014 – The Court of Disputed Returns voids the results of the WA Senate election.[114]
  • 21 February 2014 – Electoral Commissioner Ed Killesteyn announces his resignation, which will take effect on 4 July 2014.[115]


The incumbent Labor-led government argued for a need for a "safe pair of hands" to manage an economic shift from mining-oriented growth to something else; while the opposition said that it would prevent a recession that could be caused by a budget deficit. The Sydney Morning Herald suggested both arguments hedged on the mining boom going bust.[116] Rudd officially began the campaign season on 1 September in his hometown of Brisbane. At the rally, he promised tax breaks for small businesses and more work for local contractors on infrastructure projects. He said: "In this election, we are now engaged in the fight of our lives. It is a fight about the values that underpin Australia's future, a fight about our vision for Australia's future. It's a fight about how we go about building Australia's future, a future for the many, not just for the few." He also dismissed the opinion polls that showed him trailing to Abbott in gaining a parliamentary plurality.[117]

Opinion polls

Newspaper endorsements

Dailies   Sundays
Newspaper Endorsement Publisher Newspaper Endorsement Publisher
The Advertiser   Coalition * News Corp
The Age Labor[118] Fairfax Media The Sunday Age   Coalition[119] Fairfax Media
The Australian   Coalition[120] News Corp The Weekend Australian   Coalition[120] News Corp
The Australian Financial Review   Coalition[121] Fairfax Media
The Canberra Times   Coalition[122] * Fairfax Media
The Courier-Mail   Coalition[123] News Corp The Sunday Mail   Coalition[123] News Corp
The Daily Telegraph   Coalition[124] News Corp The Sunday Telegraph   Coalition[123] * News Corp
The Guardian Australia Labor[125] Guardian News and Media
The Herald Sun   Coalition[126] News Corp Sunday Herald Sun   Coalition[123] * News Corp
The Mercury   Coalition * News Corp
Northern Territory News   Coalition * News Corp
The Sydney Morning Herald   Coalition[127] * Fairfax Media The Sun-Herald   Coalition[128] * Fairfax Media
The West Australian   Coalition Seven West Media
International press
Newspaper Endorsement
The Economist Labor[129]

(*) an asterisk denotes a change from the 2010 endorsements

Result commentary

The Labor Party recorded its lowest two-party preferred vote since 1996 and lowest primary vote since 1931. Kevin Rudd announced his resignation as party leader and confirmed he would not run again in the subsequent leadership election.[130]

With Nova Peris's victory in the Senate election in the Northern Territory, she became the first Aboriginal woman to be elected to parliament.[131] WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange failed to be elected to the Senate after running in Victoria, with his Wikileaks Party garnering 0.62% of the popular vote.[132] Former Queensland premier Peter Beattie, standing in the Liberal-held seat of Forde, also failed to enter parliament.[133]

In an unprecedented outcome in Australian electoral history, the Senate result in Western Australia was declared void after the loss of over 1,300 ballot papers, necessitating a fresh election for the Senate in that state.[114][134]


The Coalition had campaigned on a tough stance on asylum seekers who came to Australia by boat (as had the Labor Party in the final weeks leading up to the election). Immediately after the election, Abbott reiterated his party's promise and announced that his new government would begin Operation Sovereign Borders — which would turn back any vessels carrying asylum seekers — as soon as possible. He also confirmed he would abolish the carbon price that was introduced by the Gillard Government,[135] as well as lower foreign aid by A$4.5 billion.[136]

Abbott was congratulated by various world leaders, including American President Barack Obama,[137] British Prime Minister David Cameron,[130] New Zealand Prime Minister John Key[138] and South African President Jacob Zuma.[139]


  1. ^ WA Senate election to be held on 5 April: 28 February 2014
  2. ^ "First house preference by party". Virtual Tally Room: 2013 election.  
  3. ^ "First Preferences by Group". Virtual Tally Room: 2013 election. AEC. 1 November 2013. Retrieved 13 November 2013. 
  4. ^ "Senate Results: Summary".  
  5. ^ Commonwealth of Australia Constitution Act, Section 13. Retrieved 6 September 2010.
  6. ^ Senate (Representation of Territories) Act 1973, Section 6. Retrieved August 2010.
  7. ^ AEC Twitter feed
  8. ^ "Senate results: Distribution of Preferences". Virtual Tally Room: Election 2013. AEC. 1 November 2013. Retrieved 13 November 2013. 
  9. ^ "Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party Consolidates Support" (Press release).  
  10. ^ Most recently updated divisions, Senate: 2013 election, AEC
  11. ^ Harrison, Dan; Hurst, Daniel; Ireland, Judith (31 October 2013). "WA Senate recount in turmoil as 1375 votes go missing".  
  12. ^ "Australian Electoral Commission statement: WA Senate recount" (Press release). =AEC. 31 October 2013. Retrieved 13 November 2013. 
  13. ^  
  14. ^  
  15. ^ Murphy, Katherine (15 November 2013). "Senate recount: electoral commission asks high court to nullify six WA seats".  
  16. ^ Ireland, Judith (15 November 2013). "Missing votes: AEC asks High Court to void WA Senate election".  
  17. ^ "Electoral Commission challenges WA Senate result to bring about fresh election".  
  18. ^
  19. ^  
  20. ^ Bitter dispute erupts over Senate preferences in Queensland: ABC 5 September 2013
  21. ^ Glen Druery – the 'preference whisperer': ABC 21 August 2013
  22. ^ 'Preference whisperer' defends role in minor parties' Senate success: The Guardian 13 September 2013
  23. ^ Western Australia 2013 Senate results and preference flows: ABC
  24. ^  
  25. ^ Australian Sports Party 'pleasantly surprised' by potential Senate seat: ABC 9 September 2013
  26. ^ Victorian 2013 Senate results and preference flows: ABC
  27. ^ a b Motoring Enthusiasts Party member Ricky Muir wins Senate seat: ABC 1 October 2013
  28. ^ South Australia 2013 Senate results and preference flows: ABC
  29. ^ Micro-manager behind independents: SMH 10 September 2013
  30. ^ A ballot crammed with choice: SMH Tim Colebatch 5 August 2013
  31. ^ Single-issue groups set to take balance of power: Canberra Times 9 September 2013
  32. ^ Coalition shy of Senate majority: Business Spectator 9 September 2013
  33. ^ Tony Abbott fires a warning shot at micro parties in the Senate: WA Today 9 September 2013
  34. ^ Xenophon wants voting reform: NineMSN 9 September 2013
  35. ^ Changing seats, 2013 election: ABC
  36. ^ Proclamation – Prorogue of the Parliament and dissolution of the House of Representatives; Gazette C2013G01196 at ComLaw, Australian Government, 5 August 2013
  37. ^ Issue of Writs for Election of Members of the House of Representatives and of Senators to Represent the Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory; Gazette C2013G01199 at ComLaw, Australian Government, 6 August 2013
  38. ^ Local council referendum put on ice Channel 9 News, 4 August 2013
  39. ^ By online political correspondent Emma Rodgers (7 September 2010). "Labor clings to power". ABC News. Retrieved 8 September 2010. 
  40. ^ "Slipper long plotted against us: LNP". The Sydney Morning Herald. 24 November 2011. Retrieved 17 March 2012. 
  41. ^ Renee, By (27 November 2011). "How Labor lured Peter Slipper to Speaker's chair in Federal Parliament". Retrieved 17 March 2012. 
  42. ^ The election of territory senators coincides with general elections for the House of Representatives, and their term expires and the new term begins on the day of the election (Commonwealth Electoral Act, s. 42). Odgers' Australian Senate Practice 12th edn (2008), p. 17, at
  43. ^ a b Malcolm Farr and Simon Benson (30 January 2013). "Julia Gillard announces federal election date". Retrieved 3 February 2013. 
  44. ^ a b David Crowe (2 February 2013). "'"Equal political broadcast time 'starts now.  
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External links

  • Antony Green's 2013 Federal election calendar
  • Antony Green's 2013 Federal election calculator
  • Political parties registered for the 2013 federal election at the Australian Electoral Commission
  • Election downloads, including Senate group voting tickets, electorates, parties, etc. at the Australian Electoral Commission
  • Australia's Rudd concedes election defeat to conservative leader Abbott – article describing the situation after 80% counted (yahoo)
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