Following on from the article in Crikey
this week regarding redistribution in the ACT, I thought I might draw
your attention to a gerrymander that has been happening in Australian
politics for a long time.

Before the last election the Howard government passed legislation to save Dave Tollner’s NT seat of Solomon as it was
going to be abolished at the last Federal election. However, the same
thing would not be done for the ACT to increase the two seats to three
as those seats are likely to go to the Labor Party.

After the ACT redistribution, the seat
of Canberra will have approximately 119,422 constituents – more than double
Solomon’s most recent roll figures of 54,725. The government refuses
to act because the ACT is safe Labor territory.

ACT Liberal Senator Gary Humphries
knows that the ACT is under-represented. If he truly wants to stand up
for the citizens he represents, he should support electoral reforms
like the current proposal before the Joint Standing Committee on
Electoral Matters (submission 55) to cap Territory electorate sizes at
110% of the national average. The paper can be read
here.

Peter Fray

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