2017 WA state election: Maintaining confidence in our electoral process

State governments Elections Election campaigns Western Australia

The administration and management of Western Australian general elections receives little scrutiny. Western Australia (WA) largely relies on the Community Development and Justice Standing Committee to review the performance of the Western Australian Electoral Commission (WAEC) during elections. Yet with around 20 diverse portfolios to review and report on, inquiring into every state election risks inadequate oversight of other important areas.

This inquiry aimed to rectify the lack of external oversight by assessing the adequacy of the WAEC’s administration and management of the 2017 State General Election (2017 election). It was particularly important given the clear election result. A closer result would have increased scrutiny by the public and media; without this, the WAEC risked complacency when reviewing its election performance.

Outlined in the report are the key findings of the inquiry, noting that the election overall was run professionally but there are areas of improvement which, unless addressed, have the potential to undermine future confidence.

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