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Jennifer Rayner: ‘Why voter IDs are unnecessary’

Jennifer Rayner is currently based at the ANU’s Centre for the Study of Australian Politics, where she is writing her doctoral thesis on election campaigning in Australia.  She writes that since 1983, when most of the current electoral rules and processes were introduced, there has never been an instance where alleged or proven voter fraud led to the overturning of a declared seat result. That is to say, in the past thirty years, neither the AEC nor any party or candidate has ever identified enough voting discrepancies to successfully pursue a case through the Court of Disputed Returns. Our system may not entirely prevent improper voting, but it is well set up to detect it and ensure that it does not affect the actual outcome – surely the true metric by which electoral integrity should be judged.

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