Australia gets its political system from the Westminster system used in the United Kingdom. This means that there are two houses of government, the Lower or House of Representatives, and the Upper House or Senate.
Voting is compulsory in all levels of Australian government.
However, voting in the Senate has always been an arduous task even for the most passionate voter.
Candidates and parties are listed on a single sheet of paper. However, in the 2013 New South Wales elections there were 45 columns. That’s a very long sheet of paper!
Where each candidate or party sits on the ballot paper is literally drawn out of a hat. Tough luck if you are half way along or at the end.
To make things a bit easier for voters to find their preferred parties this year they will be allowing each one to use a logo.
As you can see from the logs presented here, some of them are simple and clear; others not so!
The main political parties have a logo which they use to brand all their literature. However, some of the smaller parties have been very creative, to say the least.
The Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party (AMEP) has one person in government, Ricky Muir. They chose a simple, cartoon-style of Muir’s well-known and easily recognisable face.
Family First have put just used their name. As a right-wing conservative party, they are probably not wanting to give too much away. They are anti-abortion and, as their name suggests, believe in the nuclear family situation – Dad, mom and the kids. Their logo may be deliberately vague so as not to put voters off.
The Marijuana party have left nothing to the imagination and neither have the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers group.
Some groups are still deciding which logo to use and others may end up in court!
The logos will be small, only 7 x 10 mm, however, it is hoped that they will provide voters with a quicker and easier way to find the candidate of their choice.
The next Federal election is in June, we’ll report back after that to see how the logos went.