The Election Results In Australia May Take Days Until Made Official
According to Prime Minister Julia Gillard, “The people have spoken but it’s going to take a little while to determine exactly what they said.” This statement has been made after voters expressed their wishes in what is believed to be the tightest national election in almost five decades. The votes have been almost split between Gillard’s Labor Party and Tony Abbot’s Liberal-National coalition.
In order to form a government in the 150-member House of Representatives 76 seats are needed. With more than 75% of the votes counted, Labor had 60 seats and the coalition 59 seats. Due to the closeness of the race a positive outcome seems out of the question. In Australia, a government election that didn’t result in winning a majority of votes hasn’t been seen in over 70 years. As Gillard herself stated, “this is too close to call and there are a number of seats where the result is undecided and it will take a number of days of counting to determine the result.”
A parliament that isn’t formed out of a majority of seats would hinder legislation. This is a so called “hung parliament”.
This split outcome is suspected to be result of Gillard helping in the dismissal of former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in June. The former lawyer and student activist didn’t manage to shake off the negative impact, the manner in which the former Prime Minister was dispatched, had on her.
If the outcome of this elections will result in Labor losing its power after just three years, it will be the first time since 1931 that a government has been ousted after just a single-term.
Maxine McKew, Labor’s representative, criticized its party’s campaign and suggested the removal of former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd had “significant ramifications” for this split result. Maxine McKew, lost her Sydney seat of Bennelong just three years after taking it from then Prime Minister John Howard.
A number of about 40 seats, mainly in New South Wales and Queensland is believed to alter the outcome of this election.
“We are looking at a hung parliament and that means voters have rejected the major parties who offered few policies,” independent lawmaker Tony Windsor told the ABC. “The independents will get together to come up with a solution on which side we support.”
Another reason for this split result may be the disputes that have been recently going on. One of those disputes revolves around the mining taxes. Australia, the world’s biggest exporter of iron core and core, was presented by Gillard with a promise of 30% tax on iron ore and coal profits.
The other dispute revolves around climate control. Adam Bandt, representative of the Australian Greens told supporters “the government has been punished for its denial on climate change.” His party won their first lower house seat, claiming the district of Melbourne, previously held by retiring Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner. Bandt, took the district from Labor after Gillard’s delay in setting up a mechanism that ought to put a price on carbon monoxide. Bandt also stated, “We have seen the need to respond to the climate emergency being pushed into the too hard basket.”
In their attempt to cut loses due to these climate-friendly politics, Labor also vowed to cut carbon monoxide emissions by 5% by 2020 (from 2000 levels to 1900) and to generate by the same year over 20% of the nation’s energy need from renewable, non-fossil sources.
The coalition believes both them and Gillard’s party are better equipped to handle Australia’s A$1,2 trillion economy ($1,08 trillion). Plus, Abbott wants to set up a fund consisting of A$1 billion meant to encourage companies to reduce carbon monoxide emissions.
The Liberal-National coalition leader, Tony Abbott is a former amateur boxer and Rhodes scholar who studied for priesthood in the 1980s. He is married and is the father of three girls. He used his family image during his national campaign in order to highlight the differenes between himself and Gillard who is unmarried and has no children. He also promised nearly twice the amount the government forecasted in budget surplus in 2012-2013. He promised A$6.2 billion, while the government promised only A$3.5 billion. He also pledged to cut business taxes to 28.5 percent from the current 30 percent, deeper than the government’s goal of 29 percent.
Until the vote count is over, we can only sit and wait. So, who do you think will win this tight race?11