2022 ACT Senate Election

  • Re-elected 1 – Katy Gallagher (Labor)
  • Elected 2 – David Pocock (Independent)
  • Defeated – Zed Seselja (Liberal)

Party Outcome: Liberal (-1), Independent (+1)

The final first preferences table and a summary of the preferences distributions are published inside the post.

David Pocock trailed on first preferences, but with the Liberal Party having polled only three-quarters of a quota, Pocock was easily able to overtake Zed Seselja and win on preferences. Overall Pocock received around 72.5% of preferences while Zed Seselja received only 18.9% with 8.6% exhausted. Seselja finished with 0.86 quotas while Pocock was elected with 1.09 quotas.

Commentary on Result

The ACT has only two Senate seats meaning the quota to elect a Senator is 33.3% of the vote. Since the ACT first elected Senators in 1975, every election has produced the same pairing, one Labor Senator and one Liberal Senator.

Labor’s Katy Gallagher has been easily re-elected to the first Senate vacancy. Labor’s total vote was slightly above the quota at 33.4%, but the votes for Gallagher were about 440 votes short of a quota. Several candidates low on party lists, including the second Labor candidate, were excluded before Gallagher achieved a quota.

Winning the second ACT seat is Rugby Union international David Pocock, winning as an Independent and breaking the four decades major party grip on ACT Senate seats. Pocock’s ticket polled 21.2% of the vote or 0.64 quotas. Preferences from the Greens with 0.31 of a quota and Kim Rubenstein with 0.13 of a quota were enough to allow Pocock to easily pass sitting Senator Zed Seselja and win the second ACT seat. Pocock’s election could be crucial in a finely balanced Senate where Labor plus the Greens will have 38 of the 76 seats and one more vote would be needed to pass legislation.

Liberal Senator Zed Seselja has been defeated. The Liberal vote is 24.8% or 0.74 quotas, not enough to overcome the strong flows of preferences to Pocock.

First Preference Result Table

Enrolment – 314,329
Total Votes / Turnout – 290,308, 92.4% of enrolment
Informal Votes – 5,091 (1.8%)
Provisional Quota – 95,073
Below-the-line Vote – 18.9%
Last Update – Saturday, 11 June 2022, 21:41

Party Name (Group) Votes Pct Change Quotas % BTL
Labor (A) 95,184 33.37 -5.98 1.0012 19.2
Ticket votes 76,909 26.97
GALLAGHER, Katy (Re-elected 1) 17,721 6.21
NORTHAM, Maddy 554 0.19
Liberal (D) 70,739 24.80 -7.57 0.7440 9.6
Ticket votes 63,962 22.43
SESELJA, Zed (Defeated) 5,600 1.96
LAM, Kacey 1,177 0.41
David Pocock (E) 60,406 21.18 +21.18 0.6354 25.9
Ticket votes 44,767 15.70
POCOCK, David (Elected 2) 15,546 5.45
DOUBE, Clare 93 0.03
The Greens (H) 29,360 10.29 -7.42 0.3088 19.0
Ticket votes 23,781 8.34
GORENG GORENG, Tjanara 5,089 1.78
CRUZ, James 490 0.17
Kim for Canberra (F) 12,622 4.43 +4.43 0.1328 35.3
Ticket votes 8,164 2.86
RUBENSTEIN, Kim 4,299 1.51
HUYNH, Kim 159 0.06
United Australia (C) 6,112 2.14 -0.13 0.0643 15.0
Ticket votes 5,193 1.82
SAVOULIDIS, James 790 0.28
PAGE, Tracey 129 0.05
Legalise Cannabis (I) 4,516 1.58 +1.58 0.0475 10.7
Ticket votes 4,035 1.41
KATELARIS, Andrew 405 0.14
STANVIC, Michelle 76 0.03
Animal Justice (J) 1,889 0.66 +0.66 0.0199 16.4
Ticket votes 1,579 0.55
del VALLE, Yana 273 0.10
FAHIZ, Jannah 37 0.01
Sustainable Australia (B) 1,638 0.57 -1.08 0.0172 23.0
Ticket votes 1,261 0.44
ANGEL, Joy 302 0.11
HAYDON, John 75 0.03
Informed Medical Options (K) 1,458 0.51 +0.51 0.0153 24.0
Ticket votes 1,108 0.39
SIMMS, Michael 272 0.10
LIDDICOAT, Mary-Jane 78 0.03
Australian Progressives (G) 726 0.25 +0.25 0.0076 37.3
Ticket votes 455 0.16
FAULKNER, Therese 223 0.08
LIN, Stephen 48 0.02
Ungrouped (UNG) 567 0.20 +0.20 0.0060 100.0
LI, Fuxin 567 0.20
…. (Others) 0 -6.65

With no candidate having a quota, the count proceeded by excluded the lowest polling candidates. Initially these were the second candidate on each ticket. Labor’s second candidate Maddy Northam was excluded at Count 11 but there were enough votes leaking out of the Labor ticket to leave Katy Gallagher short of a quota. Count 12 excluded the Ungrouped candidate, enough to put Gallagher over quota. Count 13 distributed the 164 vote Labor surplus, counts 14-15 excluded the Australian Progressives ticket, then counts 16-17 excluded the second Liberal candidate Kacey Lam.

With only one candidate remaining from each group after Count 17, the total votes, percentages and quotas stood as below. The ‘Transfers’ column shows the change in group vote totals since the first preference tally. Zed Seselja on the Liberal ticket had 0.74 of a quota to David Pocock 0.64.

ACT Senate Count – After Count 17
Candidate (Party) Transferse Votes Pct Quotas
GALLAGHER, Katy (ALP) -111 95,073 33.33 1.0000
SESELJA, Zed (LIB) -327 70,412 24.69 0.7406
POCOCK, David (IND) +730 61,136 21.43 0.6430
GORENG GORENG, Tjanara (GRN) +231 29,591 10.37 0.3112
RUBENSTEIN, Kim (KFC) +277 12,899 4.52 0.1357
SAVOULIDIS, James (UAP) +76 6,188 2.17 0.0651
KATELARIS, Andrew (LCA) +89 4,605 1.61 0.0484
del VALLE, Yana (AJP) +69 1,958 0.69 0.0206
ANGEL, Joy (SAP) +144 1,782 0.62 0.0187
SIMMS, Michael (IMO) +90 1,548 0.54 0.0163
FAULKNER, Therese (PROG) -726 0 0.00 0.0000
LI, Fuxin (IND) -567 0 0.00 0.0000
Exhausted +25 25 0.01 0.0003

Counts 18 through 27 excluded in order the final candidates from Informed Medical Options, Sustainable Australia, Animal Justice, Legalise Cannabis and the United Australia Party. Taken together, these preference exclusions slightly favoured Seselja.

ACT Senate Count – After Count 27
Candidate (Party) Transferse Votes Pct Quotas
GALLAGHER, Katy (ALP) 0 95,073 33.33 1.0000
SESELJA, Zed (LIB) +4,998 75,410 26.44 0.7932
POCOCK, David (IND) +4,664 65,800 23.07 0.6921
GORENG GORENG, Tjanara (GRN) +3,309 32,900 11.54 0.3460
RUBENSTEIN, Kim (KFC) +2,245 15,144 5.31 0.1593
SAVOULIDIS, James (UAP) -6,188 0 0.00 0.0000
KATELARIS, Andrew (LCA) -4,605 0 0.00 0.0000
del VALLE, Yana (AJP) -1,958 0 0.00 0.0000
ANGEL, Joy (SAP) -1,782 0 0.00 0.0000
SIMMS, Michael (IMO) -1,548 0 0.00 0.0000
Exhausted +865 890 0.31 0.0094

Counts 28-29 excluded Kim Rubenstein, dramatically closing the gap between Seselja and Pocock to just 1,235 votes. Of Rubenstein’s votes, 64.7% flowed to Pocock as preferences, 21.9% to the Greens, 9.4% to Seselja and 4.1% exhsusted.

ACT Senate Count – After Count 29
Candidate (Party) Transferse Votes Pct Quotas
GALLAGHER, Katy (ALP) 0 95,073 33.33 1.0000
SESELJA, Zed (LIB) +1,426 76,836 26.94 0.8082
POCOCK, David (IND) +9,801 75,601 26.51 0.7952
GORENG GORENG, Tjanara (GRN) +3,290 36,190 12.69 0.3807
RUBENSTEIN, Kim (KFC) -15,144 0 0.00 0.0000
Exhausted +627 1,517 0.53 0.0160

Count 30 now excluded the vast bulk of Green votes putting Pocock over quota and into the second Senate seat. Of the Green votes distributed, 77.8% flowed to Pocock and only 12.9% to Seselja.

ACT Senate Count – After Count 30
Candidate (Party) Transferse Votes Pct Quotas
GALLAGHER, Katy (ALP) 0 95,073 33.33 1.0000
SESELJA, Zed (LIB) +4,649 81,485 28.57 0.8571
POCOCK, David (IND) +28,017 103,618 36.33 1.0899
GORENG GORENG, Tjanara (GRN) -36,145 45 0.02 0.0005
Exhausted +3,479 4,996 1.75 0.0525

10 thoughts on “2022 ACT Senate Election”

  1. Is this the highest below-the-line % in the 2022 senate elections? How does this compare to past elections?

    COMMENT: Tasmania has the highest rate of below-the-line voting with 22.6% but be higher once data entry is complete. The ACT rate is down from 21.4% in 2019, I suspect because there were twice as many candidates and columns.

  2. Its interesting the BTL of the Liberals was the lowest. Their How To Vote card basically said 1 Liberals then didn’t direct any preferences in the ACT, unlike the other 7 states and territories. I’m wondering how many votes were saved by vote saving provisions and people just putting a 1 in a single box. This seems like a failed tactical move, either not wanting to associate with other parties to get preferences, or trying to give people the impression the only way is to vote #1 Liberals.

    COMMENT: It looked ike a ‘Just Vote 1’ strategy that you see in NSW under optional preferential voting. We will know its influence when the ballot paper data is eventually released.

  3. Does the AEC published data allow for the simulation of a 3PP with ALP v LNP v GRN? Not that I’m asking you to do it….

    COMMENT: The AEC will publish preference counts for every seat, and any seat that has the final three parties you mention will have such a count. The data itself isn’t published as that would require every ballot paper to be scanned/data entered.

  4. From my analysis of the numbers:

    • of those who voted below-the-line for a **Labor** candidate, **97.0%** voted for Katy Gallagher and **3.0%** voted for her running mate Maddy Northam
    • of those who voted below-the-line for a **Greens** candidate, **91.2%** voted for Tjanara Goreng Goreng and **8.8%** voted for her running mate James Cruz.
    • of those who voted below-the-line for a **Liberal** candidate, **82.6%** voted for Zed Seselja and **17.4%** voted for his running mate Kacey Lam.

    Therefore the Liberal voter ‘rebellion rate’—going against the party’s suggested candidate voter order—was a lot higher than the other two parties. Seems that a lot of traditional Liberal party voters wanted a candidate other than Zed in the senate spot.

    COMMENT: Those are percentages of small numbers. I’d also point out the rate of below-the-line voting for Liberal voters was only half that of Labor and the Greens. So it seems many more Liberal ATL voters were happy with the ticket order. I also suspect you will find a lot of Labor and Green voters for their party’s #1 candidate gave a second preference to Pocock. A better measure is how many #2 voters gave a second preference to the lead candidate, a figure that can be worked out once the preference data is available.

  5. Why did the Greens have 45 votes left after Count 30? It doesn’t make any difference to anything of course, but it seems odd that all of their votes were not distributed at this point…

    COMMENT: Each count corresponds to a transfer value, with the order votes are distributed being in reduced transfer value order. The Greens were to be distributed in two counts. The first count was all first preference votes for the lead candidate, plus all votes received at full value from excluded candidates. The next count would have been of votes sourced from Katy Gallagher’s surplus, which is all ballot papers that were part of Gallagher’s quota and reached the Greens, but at a very small transfer value that equates to 45 votes. Those votes correspond to many thousands, maybe tens of thousands, of ballot papers. The first count on excluding the Green elected Pocock so the count stopped at that point.

  6. I couldn’t find these progressive figures anywhere on the AEC site. Are they slow, incompetent or located in some obscure part of the AEC site? Thanks for providing figures, Antony. And a great result for ACT

    COMMENT: They are published on the relevant state page, eg ACT. They may not have been published earlier.

  7. From the comparative preference flows minors to Pocock v minors to ALP and that only 20% of Pocock primaries went to Lib, it appears that there could have been a circumstances where Pocock polled lower, was eliminated and that the preferences would have elected a 2nd ALP candidate before Zed. i.e. the ALP 2PP was close to 67%

    COMMENT: That would have required a substantially higher Labor vote as Labor’s vote was spot on one quota. With both Pocock and the Greens on the ballot paper, it is hard to see how Labor could have won two seats.

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