Dr Joseph Toscano, an Anarchist Senate candidate, today claimed an examination of the informal vote has
shown that the number of Australians who have voted informal has
increased by nearly thirty percent, and the informal vote in the
Victorian Senate election has increased by nearly 100%.
This is the text of a press release from Toscano:
In the euphoria about the Prime Minister's electoral hat trick, a much
more interesting and worrying phenomena for those who support the
parliamentary system, has occurred. An examination of the informal vote
has shown that the number of Australians who have voted informal has
increased by nearly thirty percent.
The informal vote in the Victorian Senate election has increased by
At the close of counting on Saturday night, 7.08% - 182,
662 ballots cast were informal. This figure is 70% greater than the
figure in any other State.
The difference between the Victorian
Senate Election and the Senate Election in other States, is that two
Anarchists, Dr. Joseph Toscano and Mr Stephen Reghenzani, stood as
Senate candidates and conducted a vigorous election campaign using the
slogan - 'Parliamentary Democracy, Two Minutes of Illusory Power'. In
their campaign they encouraged electors to vote informal or consider not
voting at all.
- NSW - 4.41%
- Qld - 3.81%
- WA - 4.29%
- SA - 3.9%
- TAS - 4.43%
- ACT - 2.7%
- NT - 3.64%
Their campaign, a campaign which bypassed the mainstream media, was
conducted using the Internet and alternative media sources. It will be
interesting to see whether the abstention rate in Victoria is higher
than in other States and whether the national abstention rate has
increased during this election. Currently, 20% of votes still remain to
be counted, this includes pre-poll, postal, absent and provisional votes
as well as those who abstained. The A.E.C will have the final figures
within the next ten days.
Compulsory voting or no compulsory voting, an increasing number of
Australians are not participating in parliamentary elections. They do
not want to be forced to participate in a system of government they have
no belief in. I'm 49 and have never voted at a local, State or Federal
election, am not on the electoral roll, but was able to stand as a
Victorian Senate candidate. There are an increasing number of people
like myself who are no longer willing to give blank cheques to
parliamentarians to make decisions for us. The struggle for direct
democracy, a struggle to create a system of government, where the people
involved in a decision, make that decision, is one which crosses old
political divisions and which encompasses the apolitical as well as the
Our candidature have given people who have voted informal, or have not
voted at all, a philosophical basis and a respectability that they have
not enjoyed in the past. We can no longer be dismissed as apathetic, we
have made a significant political statement that challenges the myths
and assumptions that the parliamentary system is based on.
Dr. Joseph Toscano/Spokesperson
Anarchist Media Institute.