By Kevin Glancy
When Liberal frontbencher Christopher Pyne said that voters should be required to show identification for enrolment purposes, Labor Treasurer, Wayne Swan was quick to howl him down.
Dismissing Pyne’s call for some integrity in the election system Swan said. “’He’s just interested in trying to sort of exclude people from the electoral roll and you’d have to ask him why that’s his objective.’
It’s the kind of childish response that confirms what I have always known, apart from the fact that Wayne Swan cannot be trusted; Labor is not the slightest bit interested in an honest election system and never has been.
Every Australian citizen including all politicians should not just want a secure election system but demand that it be so and that includes Wayne Swan.
It’s fair to assume that anyone like Wayne Swan who questions someone’s motives for seeking that outcome obviously prefers to retain the ability to commit electoral fraud; to ensure by any means, that the opportunity to cheat Australia’s abuser-friendly, third rate voting system remains available.
The very reason that it is abuser-friendly is because Labor has blocked every effort made in parliament to introduce I.D. measures to ensure that people only vote once.
They (along with The Democrats) constantly blocked the former Howard Government’s efforts to have the enrolment process secured by proof of identity. Of course following enrolment, the second stage has to be presentation of I.D. when you actually vote. That bit of appropriate due diligence is still waving in the wind.
As for Wayne Swan and his obvious distaste for integrity; we all carry bits of plastic and most, if not all at voting age, have a driver’s license or a Medicare card yet, Labor still suggests that it’s an unreasonable request to place on someone, for the privilege of voting; to carry a piece of plastic when we go to the voting booth or enrol to vote.
Let’s not forget that this is the Left. These are the people who talk about human rights, democracy, tolerance and equality as if they know what the words mean. Who instead act like a crazy foreign dictatorship and prefer to deprive us of a basic human right to have honest and fair elections.
This is Labor, the people who are intent on limiting freedom of speech and expression with media regulation. A government that proposes new anti-discrimination laws designed to erode our human rights as individuals, demanding that we keep our opinions to ourselves and our mouths firmly shut like little children at kindergarten. Yes, this is Labor who care so much for our human rights and with typical double standard, cares nothing about the integrity of our election system.
We have already seen that ‘Labor win at all costs’ approach to elections proven by our current Prime Minister who betrayed voters and broke her ‘no carbon tax’ promise at the drop of a hat simply in her mad scramble to get the keys to the PM’s Office.
If you think that’s bad, then given the current political mess that Australia is in right now contemplate on this little doozy.
The power of multiple votes to win elections – was 2010 result legitimate?
In Australia, federal elections are decided by seats and when elections are close, it might take only a handful of votes to win a seat. Gaining that handful of votes to secure a seat is not too difficult because our voting system is completely devoid of integrity and multiple voting can be a regular and abuser-friendly feature.
The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) would argue that such a practice is not common yet in the last ‘hung’ 2010 Federal Election, the AEC agreed that over 16,000 people may have voted more than once. 55 of those are believed to have voted three or more times.
Given such a close election result, it’s not unfair to assume that the outcome in some seats may have been influenced by fraudulent multiple votes and look at the mess we have now masquerading as a government.
Let’s be clear on this. A small number of fraudulent votes can influence an election outcome in any seat and in particular a marginal seat.
In the 1995 NSW State Election, critical to Labor’s narrow victory were two marginal seats. One had an electoral office in Badgerys Creek and the other in Gladesville. Labor just scraped home in both seats by 260 and 107 votes respectively.
Consider that kind of scenario in the context of the 2010 Federal Election when there were 16,000 people who voted more than once and whose votes were at play across a number of marginal seats.
You can understand why back in 1995, the Liberals were suspicious of the result and very concerned about the validity of some of the ballot papers so they asked for a recount.
Was Labor about to get busted?
Ballot papers destroyed by firebombs
We will never know because just prior to the recount, the two electoral offices where the disputed returns were kept, Badgerys Creek and Gladesville were firebombed and the ballot papers destroyed. Of course, just a coincidence nothing to do with Labor’s ‘win at all costs’ election strategy.
What is also hard to comprehend is that you might have expected it to feature on the front pages of newspapers and on the television news but not a sound was heard.
According to Dr Amy McGrath, who has written some exceptional books about electoral fraud, “The extraordinary thing at the time was the inexplicable silence of the media. In the end, to find any reports of the firebombing, I had to resort to the Police Media Unit which gave me a miniscule file of a few column inches in the local paper.”
Regardless of who was responsible for that firebombing, it illustrates the lengths people will go to in order to secure power. It highlights why our voting system is in desperate need of an overhaul to ensure its integrity because while there is an opportunity to cheat it will be so.
Governments in Australia can be elected fraudulently and while I don’t suggest this was the case in this following instance it shows how close it can get and the temptation to cheat is self- evident.
The 1993 Federal Election was won by Paul Keating and Labor by just 1200 votes.
What about the marginal seats in that election? Dawson was won by 160 votes, Paterson 21, Richmond 360 and Low 460 and the list goes on.
Was the result of that ’93 election an honest outcome? I simply don’t know, no one knows and that is the crux of the matter. There should be no room for suspicion whatsoever. This applies to the act of enrolment and the behaviour at the ballot box.
The ‘hung’ 2010 Federal Election result was a draw with 72 seats each to both Labor and Liberal. Was that an honest outcome with so many multiple votes at play? Did we really have to put up with Oakeshott and Windsor and their own self- importance while they indulged in grandstanding for 17 days after the election?
How independent is the Australian Electoral Commission?
Now you might think that the AEC’s priority would be to manage the existing electoral roll and to for the sake of security ensure that there is the normal steady flow of new enrolments so that it can be managed.
You might also think given the 16,000 multiple votes at the last election that the AEC’s urgent priority would be to suggest ways to ensure that the enrolment process is secure and to make it just slightly difficult to vote twice, but what’s the AEC’s priority?
So independent is this erstwhile body is that it’s about to do Labor’s dirty work – to ensure that Labor has every chance of stumbling across the line at the next election.
The AEC is to allow the automatic enrolment of another 1.5 million people. It’s a case of let’s not worry about the mess we already have and can’t manage, let’s make a bigger mess. Besides, there’s every chance that all the young people in that lot will probably vote Labor. And unlike the usual process where people take the time to enrol for the privilege of voting – these folk won’t have to do a thing – we’ll do it for them.
Why is the AEC doing this for these people? It’s hard to give the AEC any credit for neutrality with this move. Most of the automatic enrolments will be conducted on behalf of young people who have recently left school and who are still influenced by the indoctrination of Left-wing politics including the global warming scam. I’ve seen it first hand, teachers giving young children Labor campaign material as they climbed aboard the school bus.
If the AEC and Labor think this is such a good idea why not do that favour for everyone? Let’s remove all checks and balances so that no one has to be accountable; that no one has to make any effort to vote. Do we think people will care more about elections without having to make the slightest effort to participate?
Christopher Pyne has every right to be concerned even if he’s only concerned about the Liberal perspective.
“New electoral laws that automatically enrol up to 1.5 million voters are another example of federal Labor ‘rorting the roll’,” Pyne said.
According to The Australia newspaper, an analysis of Newspoll surveys indicates the coalition’s primary vote would slip by 1.5 percentage points if those eligible to vote but not enrolled – mainly young people – were enrolled.
As many as a dozen Liberal and Nationals seats may be threatened if Labor and the Australian Greens mobilised the ‘youth vote’, the paper said.
Mr Pyne went further saying, “This is the latest iteration’ of Labor trying to get an advantage over the coalition. Rorting the roll is routine for the Labor Party,” he told Sky News.
That recent announcement by the AEC, on the eve of an election year; to allow automatic enrolment for around 1.5 million new voters shows that it is not the slightest bit interested in ensuring an honest 2013 election and you can bet that multiple voting will occur again as it always does at every election despite what the AEC might say.
Made worse because the AEC does not have a mandate to investigate fraudulent voting activities and any investigation is not automatic. AEC Electoral Commissioner Ed Killesteyn recently admitted to a Senate Committee that there was little that could be done about it.
“The difficulty in all of these cases is around whether there is appropriate evidence that there was an intent and, indeed, a practice of multiple voting,” he said.
The bitter irony is that when the AEC advises on election process in our smaller neighbouring countries they ensure that no one votes twice by applying a smudge of indelible blue ink on the hands of the voter.
Meanwhile back here in Wayne’s World, the likes of Wayne Swan are making damn sure that multiple voting remains a key option for Labor at the ballot box and the AEC has demonstrated that it simply doesn’t care.
Swan’s comrades guilty of electorate fraud
Why so harsh? You see, you can’t give Swan or Labor the benefit of the doubt when it comes to their enthusiasm for electoral fraud. The only people ever found guilty of electoral fraud in Australia were three Labor party members.
Their names were Andrew Kehoe, Karen Ehrmann and Shane Foster and like Wayne Swan they all belonged to Bill Ludwig’s AWU faction.
Would be if he could be, ‘Prime Minister’ Bill Shorten is also a comrade and under the mentorship of 77 year old Ludwig they all played a part in the demise of Kevin Rudd in 2010 and the appointment of Julia Gillard who is embroiled in her own AWU scandal.
So whenever you hear the likes of AWU comrades such as Swan or Bill Shorten, scoff at any proposal to clean up the electoral rolls be very suspicious.
History is not on their side. You can be fairly sure that any union or former union member is more than likely skilled in the art of electoral fraud – it’s an art of passage.
In the past I have reported on a number of instances that have put Labor under the electoral fraud spotlight in state and federal elections but more about that later.
Back in 1999 when Labor candidate Karen Ehrmann was jailed for electoral fraud, during Queensland’s Criminal Justice Commission inquiry into electoral fraud, she claimed that the culture of vote rigging ran throughout senior levels of the state Labor Party in Swan’s home state of Queensland.
In reference to vote rigging Erhmann said at the time.
“It was like school and I was being told how things were done in other electorates and AWU member Warwick Powell had indicated that they had someone on the inside of the AEC.
Members were asked to hand over ballots which were then filled in a room by other people. They would have runners to collect the ballot papers of all of the people aligned with their faction. They would then take those ballots into a room. In fact I’ve actually been into one of those rooms when they were filling them out and there was quite a lot of people sitting around filling out ballot papers. The papers would decide on who were appointed to different committees or positions.”
She went on to confirm that vote rigging was encouraged and condoned by people at the highest level in the Queensland Parliament and the Labor Party. She emphasised that this wasn’t a small core, side group.
In 2001, Queensland’s Criminal Justice Commission heard evidence that organisers for the AWU had employed inducements and threats to persuade Young Labor activists to commit criminal offences, which involved getting fictitious names onto the electoral roll and stacking branches with members who had no right to vote. Party workers who refused to comply were told their careers were finished.
The Australian Electoral Commission established by Labor with union help
The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) is a Labor invention. Former Labor PM Bob Hawke created it in 1984 saying at the time that ‘it should be without fear or favour’ and promptly appointed 6 union members to the 12 member National Consultative Council within the formal structure of the AEC. Bob Hawke wanted to centralise the voting system or as a cynic might say; to make the opportunity to rig elections easier. Bob Hawke was of course a union man.
For many years anyone who has challenged the notion that our voting system is user friendly in terms of electoral fraud has been dismissed as an idiot by the AEC.
In 1989 Dr Colin Hughes who was Electoral Commissioner at the time in an interview with Laurie Oakes and in reference to those like myself who believe the system is open to abuse objected stating; that ‘self-appointed watchdogs’ inspired by fundamentalist organisations in the United States and extreme right wing groups in Australia were responsible for undermining the confidence of Australia’s voting system.
How can suspicion be simply cast aside as some conspiracy when in Australia and to use a tired cliché – it is easier to enrol to vote than it is to hire a DVD. That just in the week or so prior to an election the AEC will receive on average around half a million new enrolments and have absolutely no idea of the legitimacy of those new voters.
The remarks made by Dr. Hughes in fact contradict what was said by two former Electoral Commissioners in a report they presented to the NSW Government around the same time. Mr R. Cundy and Mr L. Dickson informed the government that the electoral system was “wide open to manipulation and fraud.”
There are some Divisional Returning Officers who do try to ensure that the rolls are accurate and in the off-season so to speak, through their diligence the AEC does try to check the validity of enrolments in various electorates but it is far from comprehensive.
The rush of new enrolments prior to an election cannot be logistically checked before polling day and that in itself is a huge concern.
Here are a few examples in brief from the past and they show why we all should be very concerned. Bear in mind nothing has changed and the system is still wide open to abuse.
Furthermore, Labor’s willingness to obstruct any moves to secure the integrity of our voting system, as exemplified by Wayne Swan’s inappropriate comments, proves their guilt apart from any suggestion of guilt implied by the following examples.
Computer hacker and election night miracles
On the night of the 1993 federal Election Labor‘s chances of winning looked grim due to a poor showing in marginal seats in Sydney’s west. During counting the AEC computer system mysteriously broke down on six separate and critical occasions.
ABC’s election analyst Anthony Green noted that following each break down when the computer resumed transmission the numbers in favour of Labor ‘jumped dramatically’ and the count miraculously reversed in Paul Keating and Labor’s favour.
Remember this is the election that Keating won by a mere 1200 votes and a number of marginal seats were won by Labor by just a handful of votes.
Almost 4 years later, Timothy Cooper a computer hacker was jailed for 3 years for breaking into the AEC computer. He pleaded guilty so no evidence was provided to reveal the identity of those who had recruited him. Safe to say, it was not in the Liberal’s interest to turn an election in Labor’s favour.
Incidentally, when the AFP arrested Timothy Cooper on January 23rd 1993 he was in possession of two secret passwords belonging to two AEC employees. It is believed that the legacy of his hacking work remained in place on the night of that ’93 election.
Knowledge of Cooper’s break-in prior to that election was kept under wraps by the AEC. It’s believed that Labor Minister Frank Walker was told along with a few senior Labor politicians. What is of concern is that no other political party heading towards that ’93 election was informed of the security breach that was to impact on their chances of victory.
The AEC weren’t very concerned about the break-in, on the one hand conceding in court that the offence was great enough to compromise the entire ’93 election while claiming at the same time that the election was not in any way affected by this security breach.
In that same 1993 election 53,000 more votes were placed for the Senate than the House of Representatives. That’s a huge imbalance and contrary to normal expectations.
Mr Alisdair Webster successfully petitioned the High Court in regard to that imbalance but the Keating Labor Government quickly blocked the process by introducing legislation to prevent, from that day forward, any individual from challenging the result of a whole election.
Electoral Roll accuracy is an oxymoron. The legitimacy of 1.5 million new entries cannot be guaranteed.
In an audit of multiple different surnames enrolled at a single street address in the seat of Dickson prior to a by-election, an Enterprise Council found; 813 addresses had 5 different names listed; 49 addresses were on vacant caravan lots. Many names on the Roll were no longer in residence and the Council reported ‘glaring inaccuracies and discrepancies’ on that same Electoral Roll.
They challenged 1,532 names out of a list of over 5000 names that were verified as ‘return to sender’ mail. Labor’s Michael Lavarch had already won that election by only 370 votes.
In the NSW seat of Robertson prior to the 1998 Federal Election, Liberal incumbent Jim Lloyd did a mail out and identified 4000 suspect names on the Electoral Roll. Initially the AEC was unwilling to act but following some pressure from the Member the AEC checked and eventually removed 4000 names that should not have been on the Roll.
Had it not been for Mr Lloyd and his vigilant staff the ’98 election may have produced a Labor win in that seat.
In 1998 – 100 votes miraculously appear in Dickson
The seat of Dickson is notorious. Not least due to the infamous ‘dummy spit’ by Labor candidate Cheryl Kernot.
She had defected from the Democrats and was placed as a Labor candidate in that seat. Despite 20 ballot papers included in Kernot’s pile that actually belonged to another candidate, due to a ‘mistake’ believed to have been made by an official working on behalf of the AEC, at the end of the day’s counting the Liberal candidate had an unassailable lead.
Postal and absentee votes were still to be counted but traditionally they favoured the conservative candidate.
On the night of the election Kernot appeared in tears on television. Most of the votes had been counted and defeat was assured. She bemoaned the fact that Labor had put her in an ‘unwinnable seat’.
I do have a copy of a submission made by scrutineer Graeme J. Lee but in essence Mr Lee stated that there were 3730 ballot papers issued at the Albany Creek booth and at the end of counting only seven were unaccounted for.
Mr Lee went on holidays and read in the press that an extra 100 votes had suddenly been found at the Albany Creek booth and Labor’s Cheryl Kernot had now won the seat. Following her surprise turn-a-round victory Ms Kernot went missing shortly after having suffered ‘a nervous breakdown’.
To this day, Mr Lee believes that those votes did not and could not have existed at the Albany Creek booth and that an act electoral fraud had been committed.
Compulsory voting favours Labor.
There is little doubt that if it weren’t for compulsory voting Labor would find it very difficult to win elections. I had expected that Gillard and the Greens would move to lower the voting age and I believe that the Greens have already stated that intent.
This would be of great benefit to those political forces due to the Left-leaning influence exercised in general by teachers throughout our education system and in our Universities. The AEC move to automatically enrol 1.5 million people for the next election is therefore of great assistance to Labor and the Greens – those mainly young people will be obliged to vote.
In October 2000 I wrote an extensive article detailing the weakness of the two party preferred electoral system as applied in Australia and highlighting examples of fraud. It was in the days when The Issue was a hard copy magazine and I was assisted greatly by Dr Amy McGrath who made this point at the time.
“We are the only English speaking democracy in the world that has compulsory voting. Australia also has the dubious distinction of having a unique electoral system because of its incongruous combination of compulsion and voluntary honesty.
The concern is that the AEC has no policy for the investigation of manipulation or fraud. In fact the Electoral Act does not even require the AEC investigate irregularities. For that reason alone the political parties should set up an office of Electoral Ombudsman to ensure accountability in the electoral process.”
It is an extremely valid point. We have an Ombudsman acting on behalf of a variety of less important issues in Australia, why on earth don’t we have one to protect our basic human right to expect fair and honest elections?
But I guess that just might upset the activities preferred by Labor in Wayne’s World.