03 February 2009 | During the Howard government's time in office five bills attracted a conscience vote. This paper looks at the voting patterns of party leaders, the party vote, the vote of women, the media and conscience votes and the dilemmas facing members of parliament in these votes.
15 February 2008 | This background note provides a brief overview of the rules for determining the next Commonwealth, state and territory elections. It lists the date of the next election where this is fixed, or, where appropriate, the earliest and latest possible dates on which it may occur.
23 August 2007 | This research report surveys the operation of three types of voting system – first past the post, preferential and
proportional representation (single transferable vote) – in Australia. Despite parliamentary enquiries after each federal election, there is generally little call for major changes to be made to Australian electoral systems. On balance it seems that Australia has found arrangements that suit the needs of its people, its parties and its parliamentarians.
23 January 2007 | While the calling of an election is partly a matter of political judgement and timing, a constitutional and legislative framework governs the electoral timetables and processes. The Constitution requires periodic elections for both Houses of Parliament, with separate provisions reflecting the different constitutional role of each House.
11 October 2005 | Now that the Howard Government has control of the Senate, the balance of power in this chamber has, in effect, shifted to individual members of the Coalition. This has led to speculation that members of the Coalition might cross the floor over issues including industrial relations and voluntary student unionism. Deirdre McKeown and Rob Lundie present the preliminary results of a study of instances of crossing the floor in federal parliament.
01 September 2005 | While the calling of an election is partly a matter of political judgement and timing, a constitutional and legislative framework governs the electoral timetables and processes. Rob Lundie outlines the factors governing the dates of the next elections in each state and federally.