ID 1293

Parliament of Western Australia Legislative Council election

Election of 26 February 2005

Show only vote and seat summary details

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Election for the Legislative Council
Western Australia
Date of election
26 February 2005
Type of Legislative Council election
Four yearly periodic elections for all seats
Related or previous Assembly election

Government support in Legislative Council at and after election

Government majority in Legislative Council at date of election
Government majority in new Legislative Council

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

Total number of seats in the Legislative Council
If the Legislative Council has staggered terms, the number of seats to be filled at this election
Not applicable
Casual vacancies (by-elections) and additional seats to be filled at this election (see notes)
Not applicable
Total seats to be filled at this election

Enrolment and voting

Total number of voters on the roll
Number of uncontested seats
If uncontested seats, number of voters on the roll in uncontested seats
Not applicable
Number of voters on the roll in contested seats
Total number of candidates
Total ballots cast (may differ from number of votes in multiple voting systems)
Turnout (rate of voting in contested seats)
Total valid votes
Rate of informal (invalid) voting
Informal (invalid) ballots in multiple voting system
Not applicable
Electoral system
Adult franchise at 18 years; 6 multimember districts; proportional representation by the single transferable vote method (STV), compulsory preferences; above the line voting permitted, compulsory voting (see notes)

Western Australia, Legislative Council votes and seats won, and seats held

Display Chart

Elections held in 26 February 2005
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 % Uncontested seats at this election n Seats held by party n Seats held by party %
Australian Labor Party  33  475,717  43.35  +5.42  16  47.06    16  47.06 
Liberal Party  29  407,306  37.12  +3.16  15  44.12    15  44.12 
Greens WA  13  82,507  7.52  -0.48  5.88    5.88 
Christian Democratic Party  12  25,011  2.28  +0.74         
National Party  23,985  2.19  -0.21  2.94    2.94 
Family First  10  22,037  2.01         
One Nation  13  17,435  1.59         
Independents  16  13,852  1.26  -0.37         
Australian Democrats  12  10,180  0.93  -2.80         
Public Hospital Support Group  10  6,657  0.61         
Liberals for Forests  12  5,564  0.51         
New Country Party  3,351  0.31         
Fremantle Hospital Support Group  3,103  0.28         
Citizens Electoral Councl  639  0.06         
Totals 179  1,097,344  100.00    34  100.00    34  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.


History of the Legislative Council: For information and references on the origins and early history of the Legislative Council, see the notes for the 1894 Legislative Council elections.

Franchise and qualifications for candidates: The Constitution Acts Amendment Act (No. 2) of 1963 abolished the property franchise and plural voting for the Legislative Council, making the franchise identical to that of the Legislative Assembly. 'In addition, the qualifications for membership of the Upper House were brought into line with those for the Assembly with the lowering of the minimum age from thirty to twenty-one [eighteen from 1973] and the reduction of the residential period within the state from two years to one year', David Black, Legislative Council, p. 6 (see 'Sources', below). For details of the previous franchise and candidate qualifications, see the notes to Legislative Council elections before 1965.

Electoral system: The Acts Amendment (Electoral Reform) Act of 1987 made major changes to the way members of the Legislative Council were elected. While the number of members remained at 34, and members retained fixed terms, the terms were reduced from six to four years. Staggered terms were abandoned, all members retiring on the same date.

The Electoral Act Amendment Act of 1964 had previously ensured that Legislative Council elections would usually be held on the same date as general elections for the Legislative Assembly; see David Black, Legislative Council, p. 6 (see 'Sources', below). This provision did not affect the fixed terms of Legislative Council members; successful candidates at an early Legislative Council election would have to wait until the following May to take up their seats.

From 1989, members of the Legislative Council were elected from six multimember electoral districts (2 seven member, and 4 five member regions) by a system of proportional representation by the single transferable vote method (PR-STV). The Electoral (Procedures) Amendment Act of 1987 enabled party names to be printed on ballot papers, and provided for above the line voting at Legislative Council elections.

For information on previous Legislative Council electoral systems, see the notes to Legislative Council elections before 1989.

Seats held by parties: The total number of members in the Legislative Council affiliated with each party after an election is shown in the seats held by party column of the 'Votes and seats' table, above. With the abolition of staggered terms from 1989 (see notes above), the seats held by party will be the same as seats won by party.

Family First: As its name suggests, the Family First party claimed to represent '... commonsense, mainstream values and ordinary Australian families', Family First website [accessed 22 February 2010].

One Nation and Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party: Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party endorsed candidates and won 8.82 percent of the vote and three seats at the previous (2001) Legislative Council election. After internal divisions and major organizational changes, the party changed its name to One Nation for this election (2005); note also the entry for 'New Country Party', below.

Liberals for Forests: The party grouping had previously campaigned at the 2001 Western Australian Legislative Assembly election (but not as a registered political party) and had won a seat in the Assembly. It aimed to appeal to Liberal Party voters who were unhappy with the environmental policies of the Liberals, but did not wish to vote for the left leaning Greens WA. For a detailed analysis of the party's origins, see Amanda Blackburn and Bruce Stone, 'The Environment and Minor-Party Insurgency in Australian Politics: The Case of Logging and the "Liberals for Forests"', Australian Journal of Political Science, 38 (3), November 2003: 493-509.

New Country Party: Two members of the Legislative Council elected in 2001 as candidates affiliated with Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party (Paddy Embry and Frank Hough) became members of the New Country Party as a consequence of divisions within Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party, and ran, unsuccessfully, at this election (2005) as candidates affiliated with the New Country Party; note also the entry for 'One Nation', above.

Citizens Electoral Council: The party had its origins in the League of Rights and was committed to nationalistic and protectionist policies.

References: The Australian Journal of Politics and History has provided short surveys of Western Australian politics since 1955 (including parliamentary politics) in the 'Political Chronicle' section of the journal in issues of each annual volume. This publication can be viewed online through Wiley-Blackwell Journals at subscribing libraries.


Antony Green, Western Australian State Election 2005, Western Australian Parliamentary Library, Election Paper Series 2/2005 (Perth, Western Australian Parliamentary Library, 2006, ISBN 1920886664); also online at:

See also, Western Australian Electoral Commission website, '2005 State Election Details', at:
and David Black, Legislative Council of Western Australia: Membership Register, Electoral Law and Statistics 1890-1989, (Perth: Western Australian Parliamentary History Project, 1989, revised 1991, ISBN 0730936414).