All 150 seats in the House of Representatives
76 seats were needed for a majority
40 (of the 76) seats in the Senate
The 2013 Australianfederal election to elect the members of the 44th Parliament of Australia took place on 7 September 2013. 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, defeated the incumbent centre-left Labor Party government of Prime Minister Kevin Rudd by an 18-seat 3.6 percentage point two-party swing resulting in a landslide win for the Coalition. Labor had been in government for 6 years since first being elected in the 2007 election. This election marked the end of the 6-year Rudd-Gillard-Rudd Labor government and the start of the current (as of 2021) Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison Liberal-National Coalition government. Abbott was sworn in by the Governor-General, Quentin Bryce, as Australia's new Prime Minister on 18 September 2013, along with the Abbott Ministry and the members of the House of Representatives. The 44th Parliament of Australia opened on 12 November 2013, which is taken to be the commencement of the term of members of the House of Representatives. The new senators were sworn in by the next Governor-General Peter Cosgrove on 7 July 2014, with their six-year terms commencing on 1 July.
The proclamation dissolving the House of Representatives and formally beginning the election period had been issued by Governor-General Bryce on 5 August 2013. The writs of election were subsequently issued by Bryce for the election of members of the House of Representatives and the state governors for the senators for each state.
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 special half-Senate election was conducted on 5 April 2014 in Western Australia as a result of 1,375 lost ballot papers.
|Party||Votes||%||Swing (pp)||Seats||Change (seats)|
|Australian Labor Party||4,311,365||33.38||−4.61||55||−17|
|Liberal Party of Australia||4,134,865||32.02||+1.56||58||+14|
|Liberal National Party (QLD)||1,152,217||8.92||−0.20||22||+1|
|National Party of Australia||554,268||4.29||+0.56||9||+2|
|Country Liberal Party (NT)||41,468||0.32||+0.01||1||0|
|Palmer United Party||709,035||5.49||+5.49||1||+1|
|Katter's Australian Party||134,226||1.04||+0.73||1||0|
|Australian Labor Party||6,006,217||46.51||−3.61||55||−17|
Independents: Andrew Wilkie, Cathy McGowan
|Party||Votes||%||Swing||Seats won||Continuing senators||Total seats||Change|
|Australian Labor Party||4,038,591||30.11||–5.02||12||13||25||–6|
|Palmer United Party||658,976||4.91||+4.91||2||–||2||+2|
|Liberal Democratic Party||523,831||3.91||+2.10||1||–||1||+1|
|Family First Party||149,306||1.11||–0.99||1||–||1||+1|
|Democratic Labour Party||112,549||0.84||–0.22||0||1||1||0|
|Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party||67,560||0.50||+0.50||1||–||1||+1|
|Australian Sports Party||2,977||0.02||+0.02||1||–||1||+1|
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. The terms of the six longest-serving state senators ended on 30 June 2014; the terms of the new state senators commenced on 1 July 2014, and were originally supposed to end on 30 June 2020—however, the entire Senate was dissolved at the double-dissolution 2016 election.
The Senate saw the Coalition government on 33 seats with the Labor opposition on 25 seats, the Greens on 10 seats and a crossbench of eight—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 announced he would vote in line with Palmer United.The initial election saw Wayne Dropulich of the Australian Sports Party win a seat in Western Australia, but the subsequent voiding of the result and ensuing special election saw the Palmer United Party gain a third seat. The Coalition government required the support of at least six non-coalition Senators to pass legislation.
A record number of candidates stood at the election.Group voting tickets came under scrutiny because multiple candidates were provisionally elected with the vast majority of their 14.3 per cent quotas coming from the preferences of other parties across the political spectrum. "Preference whisperer" Glenn Druery organised tight cross-preferencing between over 30 minor parties as part of his Minor Party Alliance. Sports' Wayne Dropulich won a Senate seat on a record-low primary vote of 0.2 per cent in Western Australia, his party placing 21st out of 28 groups on primary votes. Motoring's Ricky Muir won a senate seat on a record-low primary vote of 0.5 per cent in Victoria. Family First's Bob Day won a seat on a primary vote of 3.8 per cent in South Australia. All three were involved with the Minor Party Alliance. Previous examples of winning with low vote shares include Family First's Steve Fielding in 2004 on 1.9 per cent in Victoria, the Nuclear Disarmament Party's Robert Wood in 1987 on 1.5 per cent in New South Wales, and the DLP's John Madigan won his seat in 2010 on a primary vote of 2.3 per cent in Victoria. Xenophon and larger parties including the incoming government announced they would look at changes to the GVT system.
|Party||Votes||%||Swing||Seats won||Continuing senators||Total seats||Change|
|Australian Labor Party||3,965,284||29.63||–5.50||12||13||25||–6|
|Palmer United Party||751,121||5.61||+5.61||3||–||3||+3|
|Liberal Democratic Party||502,180||3.75||+1.94||1||–||1||+1|
|Family First Party||149,994||1.12||–0.98||1||–||1||+1|
|Democratic Labour Party||115,276||0.86||–0.20||0||1||1||0|
|Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party||66,807||0.50||+0.50||1||–||1||+1|
Most Senate votes cast in Western Australia were subject to a formal recount. 1,375 WA Senate ballot papers could not be located. 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. 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. 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.During the recount it was determined that
The AEC notes that the Court has advised in its written decision issued today that it finds that the only relief appropriate is for the 2013 Western Australian Senate election result to be declared void.......In accordance with the Australian Constitution and the requirements of the Western Australian Election of Senators Act 1903, an election of six senators for Western Australia would occur once a writ has been issued by His Excellency Mr Malcolm McCusker AC CVO QC, the Governor of Western Australia.— Australian Electoral Commission, 18 February 2014
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.
Members in italics did not re-contest their House of Representatives seats at this election.
|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 Nikolic||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|
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.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.
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 76 seats, the smallest possible margin in the 150-seat House.
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.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.
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 commenced their terms on 1 July 2014 and the senators of the territories began their terms immediately after their elections.
|SA||6||2||2||1||1 (Ind., Xenophon)|
|To be contested||40||18||18||3||1|
|Elected in 2010||36||13||16||6||1 (DLP)|
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.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.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;— Broadcasting Services Act 1992, Schedule 2, Section 1
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.— Broadcasting Services Act 1992, Schedule 2, Section 3(2)
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.
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 ended on 30 June 2014, unless they represented 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:
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.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.
The press overwhelmingly favoured the Coalition over Labor, with all of News Corp's publications endorsing Tony Abbott's opposition over Kevin Rudd's government, as well as Fairfax's publications such as The Age , The Sydney Morning Herald and The Canberra Times , backing the Coalition over Labor. Fairfax's newspapers, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Canberra Times both considered the need for political stability a primary reason for supporting the Coalition, as well as criticising Labor's continuing infighting and scandals. km flown and six years of an incompetent Labor government, now it's... your turn." The Sunday Telegraph , meanwhile, printed an front-page editorial with the headline "Australia needs Tony". Additionally, The Courier-Mail used a front page to depict Labor as clowns, and ran a headline of "Does This Guy Ever Shut Up" alongside a photo of Rudd during a debate. Similarly, in the weeks preceding the election, the Herald Sun ran the headline "Trust Me" alongside a photo Abbott and on the day of the election ran a front page consisting of the headline "It's Tony's Time" alongside another photo of Abbott.The Age backed Labor, praising Labor's stewardship of the economy during the global financial crisis and noting that, of the two parties, they were the one with a vision for Australia. The Sunday Age, however, supported the Coalition, rejecting their daily counterpart's editorial that Labor had vision and that the election amounted to choosing a lesser evil, noting that during the election campaign a "genuine contest of ideas [had] not materialised", that "the campaign [had] contained no vision or policy clarion call commanding our attention and demanding our vote" and subsequently that "in the absence of policies and detailed economic information, voter decisiveness will depend on one issue: trust." During this period, various News Corp's papers published numerous front-page articles supporting The Coalition and denigrating Labor. During the campaign, The Daily Telegraph ran front pages depicting Labor as Nazis, displaying a picture of Rudd above a headline telling readers to "Kick this mob out, and, on election day, ran the headline "After 33 days campaigning, 18 babies kissed, 104,275
|Newspaper||2013 endorsement||Link||2010 endorsement||Link|
|The Australian Financial Review||Coalition||Coalition|
|The Canberra Times||Coalition||Labor|
|The Daily Telegraph||Coalition||Coalition|
|The Guardian Australia||Labor||N/A|
|The Herald Sun||Coalition||Coalition|
|Northern Territory News||Coalition||Labor|
|The Sydney Morning Herald||Coalition||Labor|
|The West Australian||Coalition||Coalition|
|Newspaper||2013 endorsement||2010 endorsement||Link|
|The Sunday Age||Coalition||Labor|
|The Weekend Australian||Coalition||Coalition|
|The Sunday Mail||Coalition||Coalition|
|The Sunday Telegraph||Coalition||Labor|
|The Sunday Herald Sun||Coalition||Labor|
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.
With Nova Peris's victory in the Senate election in the Northern Territory, she became the first Aboriginal woman to be elected to parliament.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. Former Queensland Premier Peter Beattie, standing in the Liberal-held seat of Forde, also failed to enter parliament.
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.
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"serious administrative issue came to light" during the recount