Share on facebook
Share on twitter

Federal electoral reform bills criticised by small parties, green groups and charities

The leader of the New Liberals believes the bills are ‘directly aimed at us’, while environment group fears ‘it would have the effect of silencing community voices’

New political parties in Australia would require 1,500 members to be registered and would be blocked from using names similar to existing parties, under changes proposed by the coalition government.

The assistant minister for electoral matters, Ben Morton, on Thursday introduced four electoral bills into federal parliament to crack down on multiple voting and violence at polls, lower disclosure thresholds for political campaigners and raise the bar for party registration.

Related: Federal parliament sittings in limbo after Canberra plunged into lockdown

The proposed increase from 500 to 1,500 to register a political party will require all non-parliamentary parties to re-register under the new rules, including the new name rules. That might cause a problem for the Liberal Democrats. #auspol

Raise the penalty for interference with political liberty to three years in prison

Reduce the period of pre-poll to a maximum of 12 days

Lower the expenditure threshold to register as a political campaigner from $500,000 to $100,000; and

Allow the electoral commissioner to classify someone a “designated elector” who must use a declaration vote to prevent them casting multiple votes

Sign up to receive an email with the top stories from Guardian Australia every morning

Continue reading…