Voters in Canning may be dudded by corrupt Electoral Roll

· Abnormally-large increase in new voters outstrips national average

· ‘Phantom’ enrolments could exceed 8,200, enough to swing the election

· AFHE calls on AEC to urgently investigate Electoral Roll

With the announcement today of the candidates for the coming by-election in Canning in WA, serious questions are being asked about whether the AEC is capable of operating a reliable Electoral Roll and whether it is being manipulated for base political purposes.

Lex Stewart, President of the Australians For Honest Elections organisation asks:

”Has the Canning Electoral Roll been ‘padded’ with an extra 8,200 false enrolments?

The Roll for the Canning byelection contains 112,809 names

The Roll for the 7 September 2013 election contained 101,804 names in Canning

An extra 11,005 is a larger-than-usual increase in the Canning electorate Electoral Roll, a growth rate of 10.8% in merely two years,” said Mr Stewart.

Australia-wide the Electoral Roll was 14.712 million for the 2013 election, up from 13.021 million for the 9 October 2014 election, showing a growth rate of 1.37% for this nine-year period.

If the Canning Electoral Roll had instead grown by the Australia-wide long-term average of 1.37% per annum then it would have risen by only 2,801,” said Mr Stewart.

“Electoral Rolls can grow due to normal demographic factors, but can also grow due to internet transfers of people pretending to move from other areas, and such false enrolments could lodge absentee or postal votes without even entering Canning. Alternatively, persons living in Canning could, in the absence of the need to produce ID when voting, vote on behalf of other people.”

“This is what seems to have happened in the April 2014 WA Senate election re-run where the anomalously huge increase in the Electoral Roll was again about 8-10,000 and exactly matched the anomalously large increase in absentee and postal votes for the Greens and ALP.”

Based on the voting pattern in Canning in the 2013 election, the ALP needs a swing of only 10,454 votes to win this seat. 8204 is almost 10454. (half of 54,700 – 33,973 = 10,454)

The Australian National Audit Office in its reports of 2002, 2004 and 2010 criticised the AEC for deficiencies in their running of the Electoral Roll, as described by AFHE media releases of 18th, 20th and 27th July 2014. We believe the AEC has done little to address these concerns.”

“Has the AEC checked whether this anomalously high number of extra enrolments in Canning are genuine, or are they bogus padding?” said Mr Stewart.

This is an urgent matter because due to the stupidity of Section 361(1) of the Commonwealth Electoral Act, even if it becomes manifest after the election that false enrolments have been made, then the Court of Disputed Returns, is almost unbelievably forbidden by this section of legislation from enquiring into the bodgied Electoral Rolls and phantom false enrolments. Who else is going to enquire into it if the highest court in the land cant do it? (and the AEC never does it!)

Lex Stewart, President of Australians for Honest Elections Inc