ID 1117

Parliament of Tasmania Legislative Council annual periodic election and by-elections

Election of 23 February 1884


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Election for the Legislative Council
Tasmania
Date of election
1884
Type of Legislative Council election
By-elections (no periodic election), February to August 1884
Previous Assembly election

Government support in Legislative Council at and after election

Government majority in Legislative Council at date of periodic election
No
Government majority in new Legislative Council
No

Composition of the Legislative Council and seats to be filled at this election

Total number of seats in the Legislative Council
16
If the Legislative Council has staggered terms, the number of seats to be filled at this election
0
Casual vacancies (by-elections) and additional seats to be filled at this election (see notes)
3
Total seats to be filled at this election
3

Enrolment and voting

Total number of voters on the roll
664
Number of uncontested seats
2
If uncontested seats, number of voters on the roll in uncontested seats
416
Number of voters on the roll in contested seats
248
Total number of candidates
4
Total ballots cast (may differ from number of votes in multiple voting systems)
173
Turnout (rate of voting in contested seats)
69.76%
Total valid votes
168
Rate of informal (invalid) voting
2.89%
Informal (invalid) ballots in multiple voting system
Not applicable
Electoral system
Property and occupational franchise; plural voting permitted; 11 single member and 2 multimember electoral districts; plurality voting; staggered fixed six year terms (see notes)


Tasmania, Legislative Council votes and seats won, and seats held

Display Chart

Elections held in 1884
Criteria for the inclusion of parties in this table are set out in the Glossary under 'listed party'

* to view table drag left or right.
Party Name Candidates n First preference vote n First preference vote share % Change from previous election % Seats won by party n Seats won by party % Seats held by party n Seats held by party %
Independents (No disciplined party groupings)  168  100.00  100.00  16  100.00 
Totals 168  100.00    100.00  16  100.00 


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* Party did not contest previous election or did not meet criteria for listing, or contested previous election under a different party name.

Notes

History of the Legislative Council: For information and references on the early history of the Legislative Council, see the note for the 1856 Legislative Council election.

Enlargement of the Legislative Council: The Electoral Act No. 4, 1870 had created the new single member Legislative Council electoral district of Mersey and, together with the Constitution Amendment Act, 1871 increased the membership of the Legislative Council to 16.

Franchise: The property qualifications for the Legislative Council franchise was further reduced in 1884 by the Constitution Amendment Act of that year. Voters for the Legislative Council had to be over 21 years of age who were owners of freehold estate of £20 or more; see Bennett and Bennett, p.8 (see 'Sources', below). Plural voting was permitted for those who had the qualifications for the franchise in more than one electoral district; see Terry Newman, Sandstone and Statutes: A History of the Tasmanian Parliament, (in process).

Qualifications for candidates: Candidates for Legislative Council elections had to be male British subjects of at least 30 years of age.

Electoral system and members' terms: From 1871 to 1885, the Legislative Council was composed of 16 members to be elected from 11 single member districts, a two member district (Tamar), and a three member district (Hobart). Each member was elected for a fixed six year term from the date of election, even if the election was a by-election. Fixed terms and the high incidence of by-elections prompted by resignation or death had created an uneven pattern of elections at which by-elections were as common as periodic elections in the period From 1871 to 1885.

Voting: Voting was by striking out the names of candidates on a printed ballot paper until only one name remained. Votes were counted by the first past the post (plurality) method and cast using the secret ballot (see Newman in 'References', below).

Premier in upper house: Ayde Douglas accepted his commission as Premier in 1884 while a member of the Legislative Council. He was the seventh Tasmanian premier to hold the office while a member of the Legislative Council. His Attorney-General, John Stockell Dodds, remained in office from Giblin's ministry as leader for the Government in the House of Assembly; see the entry for Premier Douglas in the 'Governments' section of this website.

References: For a description of the style of elections and parliamentary government in this period, see W A Townsley, 'Electoral Systems and Constituencies', and John Reynolds, 'Premiers and Political Leaders', in F C Green (editor), Tasmania: A Century of Responsible Government 1856-1956, pp 59-65, and 115-192, (Hobart: L G Shea, Government Printer, [1956]), and W A Townsley, Tasmania From Colony to Statehood 1803-1945, (Hobart: St. David's Park Publishing, 1991, ISBN 0724625753). On Tasmania's early adoption of the secret ballot in 1856, see Terry Newman, 'Tasmania and the Secret Ballot', Australian Journal of Politics and History, 9 (1) 2003: 93-101, and note pp 99-100 which gives an idea of the context of voting in early Tasmanian elections.

Sources

Voting figures and election results calculated from information in Scott Bennett and Barbara Bennett, Tasmanian Electoral Handbook, 1851-1982, (Kensington, NSW: Reference Section of History Project Incorporated, University of New South Wales, 1983). The difficulties of determining the accuracy of early Tasmanian election results is discussed in Scott Bennett, 'The Statistics of Tasmania and the Study of Tasmanian Elections: A Cautionary Note', in Tasmanian Historical Research Association, Papers and Proceedings, 45(4), December 1998: 237-242.


Tasmania, Legislative Council votes and seats won by electoral district

Election for the district of Buckingham

Date of election
15 March 1884
Type of election
By-election (death of member)
Date of previous election
21 July 1879
Enrolment
248
Ballots cast
173
Turnout (rate of voting)
69.76%
Total valid votes
168
Rate of informal (invalid) voting
2.89%
Informal (invalid) ballots in multiple voting system

Candidate
Philip Oakley Fysh
Party affiliation
Independents
Sitting member
Sitting member from by-election
First Preference vote n
113
First preference vote share %
67.26
Elected
Yes
Candidate
J Solomon
Party affiliation
Independents
Sitting member
Sitting member from by-election
First Preference vote n
55
First preference vote share %
32.74
Elected

Election for the district of Jordan

Date of election
23 February 1884
Type of election
By-election (death of member)
Date of previous election
23 June 1880
Enrolment
224
Ballots cast
Uncontested
Turnout (rate of voting)
Not applicable
Total valid votes
Not applicable
Rate of informal (invalid) voting
Informal (invalid) ballots in multiple voting system

Candidate
J W Agnew
Party affiliation
Independents
Sitting member
Sitting member from by-election
First Preference vote n
Uncontested
First preference vote share %
Uncontested
Elected
Yes

Election for the district of South Esk

Date of election
27 August 1884
Type of election
By-election (resignation of member)
Date of previous election
28 June 1882
Enrolment
192
Ballots cast
Uncontested
Turnout (rate of voting)
Not applicable
Total valid votes
Not applicable
Rate of informal (invalid) voting
Informal (invalid) ballots in multiple voting system

Candidate
A Douglas
Party affiliation
Independents
Sitting member
Sitting member from by-election
First Preference vote n
Uncontested
First preference vote share %
Uncontested
Elected
Yes



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