Wed, 24 Feb 2010 - 23:00
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Fletcher to support legislation triggered by Bradfield by-election

Federal Member for Bradfield, Paul Fletcher MP is championing new provisions in the Electoral Act which will outlaw any repeat of the ‘nine candidates from one party’ tactic used by the Christian Democrats in last year’s Bradfield by-election.

“The tactic employed by the Christian Democrats was confusing and annoying to many people in Bradfield.
They ran nine separate Christian Democrat candidates.” Mr Fletcher said.

Mr Fletcher said that this produced a very long and complicated ballot paper, with 22 candidates in total.  Many people made an error in filling out the ballot paper – resulting in a high informal vote. Even supporters of the Christian Democrats expressed frustration.

Mr Fletcher expressed his strong support for the new provision which will outlaw such a tactic in the future.

In his remarks in the House, Mr Fletcher condemned the survey issued by the Christian Democrats during the by-election, which contained offensive questions about whether, for example, there should be no more Muslim schools in Australia.

Mr Fletcher also reminded the House that the Labor Party had failed to run a candidate in the Bradfield by-election, thus disenfranchising its own supporters.

The legislation is expected to be voted on in the House of Representatives shortly.

Media contact: Darren Bark 02 6277 4240