Quade Cooper fit to play Super Rugby opener

Just four days after being stretchered from Ballymore in a neck brace, a thankful Quade Cooper has declared himself ready to take on the Brumbies in Queensland’s Super Rugby opener in Canberra on Saturday night.
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There was justifiable concern for Cooper late in the trial against the Rebels, when he took a knock to the back and fell to the turf. He was swamped by medical staff, put into a brace and taken to hospital for scans.

The news, since then, has been all good, with Cooper being cleared of any serious spinal damage.

The injury was likened to a whiplash, which has left him sore and sorry but ready to compete by the weekend.

“I feel pretty good. I feel like a footballer. I’m sure there’s a lot of guys in the front row who are scrummaging every morning who are feeling a lot worse than I am. I’m grateful to be up and about and be able to join my teammates,” Cooper said on Tuesday morning.

“I’ve been given the all clear. It’s up to me. From a medical point of view, there’s no damage to say I shouldn’t be able to play.”

Cooper said he was in shock and scared as he was taken to St Andrews Hospital. But he thanked Reds medical staff and doctors for taking all of the right precautions to ensure there was nothing more sinister at play.

“It was one of the scariest moments of my footy career. The medical staff did a great job to make sure everything ran smoothly, and all the doctors and medical staff at St Andrews Hospital,” Cooper said.

“I was pretty scared and in a position you’d hate to see anybody in. I’m very grateful to be standing in front of you with no serious or severe damage.”

Reds coach Richard Graham was bullish after the game that Cooper could be available for selection but will be delighted with the medical reports he has received about his star playmaker.

The Reds will need his services against the Brumbies as they try to bounce back from a flat trial against the Rebels. It started off with a sluggish effort on the park and almost ended in disaster when Cooper went down.

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Online drinking game ‘neknomination’ linked to man’s death

Bradley Eames drank two pints of gin in two minutes before his death.A man who filmed himself downing 30 shots of pure gin has become another casualty of the worldwide craze “neknomination”, according to English media reports.England’s Bradley Eames, 20, posted a video of himself drinking two pints of gin within two minutes on February 6, finishing the stunt by telling his friends: “This is how you drink”.”Neknomination”, the new digital chain mail game that encourages a person to film themselves “necking” or skolling a drink, then nominating a friend at the end of the film to take up the same challenge, has swept across the globe, with increasingly disastrous consequences.In the video – which has since been taken down – Mr Eames tell the camera that he has been watching his friends “do the neknominate, but to me, I don’t think they’re good, so I bought myself some gin and this is how you drink”.According to the UK’s Daily Mail, initial autopsy results were inconclusive, and police will conduct an investigation into the cause of death.Mr Eames’ death follows that of 19-year-old Irish national Jonny Byrne, whose body was found in a river County Carlow, Ireland, earlier in February, after he reportedly jumped in after taking part in neknominate the night before.A day before Mr Byrne’s body was found, Ross Cummins, 22, a Dublin DJ, died after a night of heavy drinking. Irish media reported his death was also linked to the game.Men in particular are sharing their drinking escapades on social media, trying to out-do each other and come up with more outlandish ways to complete the challenge.On Monday, Radio 3AW obtained footage of a young boy, still wearing his school uniform, skolling from a beer bottle.The video, which was posted on YouTube, was filmed by the the boy’s father.National Policy Manager for the Australian Drug Foundation, Geoff Munro, said neknomination was “just the latest extension of our drinking culture”.”Our society teaches young people that getting drunk is the aim of drinking,” he said.”We are very concerned about people dying across the world from this, and we worry that if this continues, it is inevitable that we will see Australians die from the same behaviour”.Mr Munro said neknomination was a form of bullying “which was particularly threatening, because it involved people demanding their friends consume potentially lethal quantities of alcohol”.In January, police were sent a video by Crime Stoppers showing a 21-year-old Eltham man getting out of the boot of a car to “neck’ a full schooner of beer before getting back into the boot while the car zoomed off.
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New motorway will derail commuters

Improving public transport will relieve road congestion. Photo: Thinkstock.Most people will tell you it is just commonsense.
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Morning trains arriving in the city from the western suburbs are packed with passengers like tins of sardines. There’s no room for more commuters. We need more rail capacity. The roads are full too but a road lane only accommodates 2000 cars, or 2400 people, per hour, while the same amount of space given over to a rail line accommodates about 20,000 commuters. If we improve public transport services in western Sydney, we will relieve road congestion too, because people will have another commuting option.

This is why regular public opinion surveys tell us most people — about 60 per cent to 70 per cent — think money being spent on roads should be spent on public transport instead. NSW Government plans to spend $11 billion on the WestConnex tollway – a tollway that widens the M4 and M5 and builds a six-lane tunnel between the two — doesn’t jell with what most people want.

There’s good science to back up the commonsense view. It goes like this: public transport operates to a fixed speed, a timetable. Most people will take whichever transport option is fastest. They don’t care about the mode. If public transport is quicker they’ll catch a train or a bus, freeing up road space. If driving is quicker, they’ll jump in their car, adding to road congestion. In this way, public transport speeds determine road speeds. The upshot is that increasing public transport speeds is one of the best options available to governments and communities wanting to reduce road traffic congestion.

There is plenty of evidence to prove the point. When Sydney’s train service reliability disintegrated in 2004 and the unusual decision was made to slow the city’s rail network, embedding the slower speeds in the 2006 timetable, road speeds fell and congestion increased. Average road speeds were sitting on 34 km/hour before things went pear-shaped on the rail network. Afterwards, road speeds dropped to about 30 km/hour and have basically stayed there.

The new timetable has made rail travel quicker for many areas throughout Sydney but it is still too early to see if there have been improvements in parallel road speeds.

This relationship is one of the key mechanisms that make city systems tick. It is basic microeconomics, people shifting between two different options until there is no advantage in shifting and equilibrium is found. We can see this relationship in data sets that make comparisons between international cities. Cities with faster public transport speeds generally have faster road speeds.

With all this evidence behind us, it’s hard to understand why anyone would want to build the WestConnex tollway.

The $11 billion earmarked to expand existing motorways that filled up with traffic not long after they were first opened, could be far better spent on public transport. A project like a second Sydney Harbour rail crossing is one of the things we won’t see because of WestConnex. It would improve operations across the network by freeing up the bottleneck in the central business district that’s stopping Sydney Trains from putting on more services across a whole suite of lines. If you free that strategically significant choke point, existing spare capacity on outer network links could be used to increase capacity across the entire network by a staggering 50 per cent to 60 per cent.

That’s how you make big improvements and a genuine dent in the problem of road congestion and cut petrol bills for car commuters.

Dr Michelle Zeibots is a research principal at the University of Technology, Sydney’s Institute for Sustainable Futures, specialising in the analysis of sustainable urban passenger transport systems.

For more Brink stories go to http://newsroom.uts.edu.au/brink

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Climate change refugees a reality

A child surrounded by flood water in Bangladesh. Photo: DFID-Rafiqur Rahman Raqu.Australia needs to plan for an influx of climate change refugees from neighbouring countries that face ever increasing risks from cyclones, rising sea levels and more severe droughts, according to a researcher at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS).
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Fears about waves of mass migration from climate change are unfounded, says the university’s Elaine Kelly. But Dr Kelly, a UTS Chancellor’s Post Doctoral Research Fellow, says Australia should start planning migration streams that include people who have lost their homes to climate change, in addition to those we already accept for other humanitarian reasons.

“The reality is climate change will provoke more displacement, and displacement of those who are most poor,” says Dr Kelly. “How are we going to plan for that?”

The international community is now talking less about how to cut carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in the atmosphere and more about how to cope with the dramatic changes excessive amounts of CO2 will have on climate and temperatures, she says. One of the solutions is planned migration from those areas particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change to less vulnerable places.

It is a major shift in thinking that has yet to be adopted by Australian politicians.

“We need to think about local, regional and international ways of regulating migration if we want to do it well,” says Dr Kelly. “Australia needs to be involved in the [international] talks around climate change funding and how to initiate funds and implement these sorts of programs. But at the moment, we are withdrawing from those sorts of conversations,” she says.

Dr Kelly argues that because climate change is increasing the pressure for people living in south-east Asia to migrate to safer regions, it is more important than ever that the debate about migration, and particularly about refugees, should be based on ethics rather than politics or national security.

In November, one of the strongest cyclones to hit the Philippines, Typhoon Haiyang, killed thousands of people and left millions homeless. A month earlier, in India, more than half a million people were evacuated from their homes before another cyclone hit. In May, one million people were evacuated as a cyclone hit Bangladesh, a country particularly vulnerable to cyclones and flooding.

Most climate change adaption will be local, says Dr Kelly. For example, migration from low-lying rural areas in Bangladesh to the capital, Dhaka, is expected to increase the city’s population to 40 million by 2050 from 15 million today.

Dr Kelly has observed a sense of hospitality in the international refugee program for those suffering political persecution, a sense sorely lacking in Australia.

“Hospitality to affected countries from the industrial countries responsible for climate change must be seen as either a mode of adaptation or a form of compensation for profound losses and damages caused by climate change,” she says.

“I would love to see a reasoned discussion of [the ethics of climate change] in Australia, one that isn’t polemic and isn’t driven by fear. I’d love to see a discussion that looks at the human issues and at the pragmatic approaches that government can take.”

She also wants to see research conducted in communities that have welcomed migrants and regional communities that want more people.

“How can we develop and implement welcoming policies at that level? I’d love to see conversations happening at local levels and then putting pressure on members of parliament, and the state and federal governments to engage in the conversation.”

For more Brink stories go to http://newsroom.uts.edu.au/brink

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Arthur Sinodinos knows how it works, you can bank on it

Assistant Treasurer, Senator Arthur Sinodinos, during Question Time in the Senate. Photo: Dominic Lorrimer”The role he (Arthur Sinodinos) is leaving at the National Australia Bank makes him an invaluable link to the top end of town when business has its doubts over the Coalition’s policy integrity,” Christian Kerr wrote in The Australian with considerable prescience back in September, 2011.
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It now seems that the Assistant Treasurer has also been an invaluable link for the top end of town, as well as to it.

Let’s be very clear about this: the most contentious reform of the still-young Future of Financial Advice (FoFA) legislation – bringing commissions back from the dead – is purely the work of the big banks and Senator Sinodinos.

It wasn’t part of the deal Senator Mathias Cormann worked out when he had carriage of the issue before the election. And, most tellingly, it’s not what the Financial Planning Association of Australia wants.

The FPA introduced a ban on its members accepting commissions back in 2009. The association’s focus is on financial planners becoming professionals, rather than product salespeople. It continues to be FPA policy that commissions are out, whatever changes Senator Sinodinos gets through parliament.

It has been the banks – the product manufacturers who, one way or the other, control the lion’s share of the financial planning industry – who wanted to get commissions back on the books. Given bankers’ demonstrated inability to control commission-driven sales forces, it’s an amazing demonstration of executives’ interest in their own performance bonuses winning out over their much-professed interest in putting the customer first.

Whether it was the extraordinary business being generated by individual bank managers making loans to Storm Financial victims, or the way the CBA’s own “financial planners” were making so many sales, the banks’ top management and, presumably, their chairmen and boards didn’t want to know.

But their success in pushing Sinodinos to re-open the door for conflicted remuneration indicates they all know perfectly well how it’s done.

And Senator Sinodinos himself does as well. His title at the NAB before taking up a Senate vacancy in November, 2011, was “Managing Director for Government, Education and Carbon Solutions, Institutional Banking, Business Banking Australia”.

Yes, he knows very well how to move product and maximise the bank’s profit and executive bonuses.

That’s why Peter Martin’s likening of Senator Sinodinos’ position to that of his fellow assistant minister, Senator Fiona Nash, is so apposite.

The coalition’s pre-Sinodinos FoFA changes had their critics, but they were not unreasonable as the pendulum swings.

FoFA, like any changes when there are billions of dollars at stake, has been a battle ground for various self-interests, as well as people genuinely wanting a better system to serve Australians who are under-advised.

The Cormann compromises calmed some parties’ concerns without changing the fundamental thrust.

But then along came the former NAB executive with the invaluable links with the top end of town.

Senator, you’ve blundered. Your reforms to the reform will have to be reformed. The bankers’ over-riding interest in flogging product will have to take a back seat as they simply can’t handle commissions.

Michael Pascoe is a BusinessDay contributing editor.

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Wickedness in the eyes of the law

Dr Penny Crofts … criminal law constructs notions of wickedness. Photo: Anna ZhuIn July 2012, Sydney teenager Thomas Kelly was killed by a single punch to the head as he began a night out in Sydney’s Kings Cross. Last November, the young man who delivered the blow, 19-year-old Kieran Loveridge, was sentenced in the NSW Supreme Court to a minimum of four years’ jail.
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According to evidence tendered in court, Loveridge had attacked four other young men on the night he killed Thomas, splitting the eyebrow of one with an elbow to the head.

After so many other deadly one-punch attacks in the past two years – including that on Daniel Christie on New Year’s Eve – the debate has been re-ignited about seemingly callous assaults on strangers, attacks that are nearly always fuelled by alcohol.

State MP for Baulkham Hills David Elliott (Thomas attended school in that area) said Loveridge’s actions were the “very definition of evil”.

“Evil is flourishing and it is time the judiciary of our state began honouring their commitment to justice and human rights for all – not just those who come before the bench,” Elliott told Parliament after the sentencing.

The words “wickedness” and “evil” have gained popularity in recent years, especially since the terrorist attacks in New York on September 11, 2001. But the meaning of the words is not clear, says Senior Law Lecturer at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Dr Penny Crofts.

“The media, community and political response to the very sad death of Thomas Kelly can be regarded as a social debate about what it means to be wicked, and the role of the criminal law in constructing notions of right and wrong,” says Dr Crofts.

“Criminal law organises wickedness whether it wants to or not and we should critically evaluate the models of wickedness that are expressed in the law.”

Despite the importance of wickedness in criminal law, the question of what it means to be wicked is either avoided or ignored.

In her new book Wickedness and Crime: Laws of Homicide and Malice, Dr Crofts seeks to expose the ways in which criminal law communicates and sanctions different types of wickedness in contemporary society.

In criminal law, the dominant account of wickedness is that of subjective blameworthiness, she says. A person cannot be guilty unless they did the wrong thing intentionally or knowingly.

“This is a very thin account of wickedness,” says Dr Crofts. “It doesn’t account for all the different ways of being wicked or what the criminal justice system actually does.”

If a person intentionally kills someone they may not be guilty of murder if they didn’t want to kill them – if they were forced by a threat to murder. “This is an emotional account of wickedness that moves beyond a focus on intention,” says Dr Crofts.

Dr Crofts has found that in older philosophical and legal models, wickedness is related to an absence of goodness and a failure to care.

“We need an account of wickedness that includes an evaluation of individual emotions and thoughts as well as external or objective evaluation of what their actions were threatening,” says Dr Crofts.

Just because a person did not want to kill someone does not mean they should not be held responsible.

“If a person failed to exercise care for a value [life] that we as a society enshrine as important, they could be regarded as wicked,” says Dr Crofts.

For more Brink stories go to http://newsroom.uts.edu.au/brink

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Buddy to miss Canberra game

Sydney Swans marquee recruit Lance Franklin has been rested from Thursday night’s NAB Challenge match against the GWS Giants in Canberra.
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The former Hawthorn spearhead will be kept in cotton wool for Sydney’s second official pre-season game in Blacktown next week.

Swans teammates Adam Goodes, Kurt Tippett, Mike Pyke and Lewis Roberts-Thomson will also miss the trip to Manuka Oval.

Franklin, Pyke and Roberts-Thomson all featured in Sydney’s intra-club trial game last week.

Swans coach John Longmire said the club was monitoring the workload of the trio so they would hit the ground running in round one.

“They will get some good time into them next week, which was always our plan and that’s what we’re looking forward to doing,” Longmire said.

“They did 60 minutes last week and they’ve pulled up really well.

“We’ll still field a pretty strong team without them.”

It would have been the first time Franklin had faced the Giants since turning down overtures to join the expansion club.

Franklin instead signed with the Swans on a massive $10 million, nine-year deal, which has turned the spotlight on the salary cap allowance afforded to the Swans and the Giants.

Goodes is recovering from a knee injury sustained at the end of last season and won’t be available until round three at the earliest.

Tippett is also in doubt for the start of the season after seeing a specialist to deal with tendonitis in his knee.

“Tippett will be unlikely for round one and has come back with a really solid plan,” Longmire said.

”He has put a lot of work into strengthing his leg.

”He’s dealt with it before.

”He’s confident if he puts the right things in place then he’ll be fine.”

Meanwhile, the Giants have included former number one draft pick Jonathan Patton in his first game at Manuka Oval since suffering a serious knee injury.

Patton tore his anterior cruciate ligament in the round-three loss to St Kilda last year.

The Giants will also field all five of their new recruits, pitting premiership-winning ruckman Shane Mumford and Jed Lamb against their old side.

Heath Shaw (Collingwood), Josh Hunt (Geelong) and Dylan Addison (Bulldogs) will also make their debuts for the Giants after joining the club in the off-season.

GREATER WESTERN SYDNEY1. Phil Davis, 2. Curtly Hampton, 3. Stephen Coniglio, 4, Toby Greene, 5. Dylan Shiel, 6. Lachie Whitfield, 7. Rhys Palmer, 8. Callan Ward, 9. Tom Scully, 10. Devon Smith, 11. Jed Lamb, 12. Jon Patton, 14. Tom Bugg, 17. Adam Treloar, 18. Jeremy Cameron, 19. Nick Haynes, 20. Adam Tomlinson, 21. Matt Buntine, 23. Heath Shaw, 26. Jon Giles, 30. Lachie Plowman, 31. Jacob Townsend, 32. Josh Hunt, 33. Will Hoskin-Elliott, 40. Adam Kennedy, 41.    Shane Mumford, 44. Tom Downie, 46. Dylan Addison, 48. Sam FrostSYDNEY SWANS2. Ryce Shaw, 3. Jarrad McVeigh, 4. Daniel Hannebery, 5. Ryan O’Keefe, 6. Tom Mitchell, 7. Harry Cunningham, 9. Nick Malceski, 11. Jeremy Laidler, 12. Josh Kennedy, 13. Toby Nankervis, 14. Craig Bird, 15. Kieren Jack, 16. Gary Rohan, 18. Jordan Lockyer, 19. Tom Derickx, 20. Ben Reid, 21. Ben McGlynn, 22. Dean Towers, 24. Dane Rampe, 25. Ted Richards, 26. Luke Parker, 27. Daniel Robinson, 31. Harrison Marsh, 33. Brandon Jack, 35. Sam Naismith, 36. Aliir Aliir, 39. Heath Grundy, 40. Nick Smith, 44. Jake Lloyd.

THURSDAY: NAB Challenge: GWS Giants v Sydney Swans at Manuka Oval, 7.10pm.

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Nine’s Love Child delivers ratings as final tally on Schapelle Corby telemovie surprises

Ratings success … Jessia Marais and Mandy McElhinney star in Nine’s Love Child. Bring out the ocker in jus … Carly and Tresne on Seven’s MKR.
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Actress Krew Boylan as Schapelle Corby in Nine’s telemovie.

MKR recap: Gatecrashers bring out ocker in jus

It was another huge night for Australian television.

Every show in last night’s top 10 was local, with Channel Nine scoring five programs with a million-plus audience each in the major capital cities. Seven netted three.

But the Seven network won the night by a whisker, claiming an overall audience share of 30.5 per cent to Nine’s 30.4 per cent. Ten took third place with 18.2 per cent, followed by ABC’s 17.6 per cent and SBS’s 3.4 per cent.

Again, Seven’s reality juggernaut My Kitchen Rules was the top-rating program, scoring a massive 1.93 million viewers in the metropolitan areas – rising to 2.82 million including the regional areas.

Nine’s new drama Love Child, which explores the sexual politics of the 1960s, made an impressive debut with 1.36 million (1.93 million including regional).

The network also unveiled the consolidated ratings for the two screenings of its Schapelle telemovie last week. All up, more than 1.96 million Australians in the regional and metropolitan areas watched either the live broadcasts or a recording within seven days. This should put to rest any notion the movie was a “flop”, as one outlet reported.

Yes, Schapelle got thumped by Seven’s INXS telemovie – but an overall audience of almost two million spells success by any measure.

Nine’s decision to overhaul its 6pm to 7.3pm slot – extending its news to one hour and shifting A Current Affair to 7pm – also appears to be paying dividends. Though Seven has since launched a one-hour bulletin in the eastern states, Nine’s won the night with 1.16 million at 6pm and 1.13 million at 6.30pm compared to Seven’s 1.12 million at 6pm, and just a little under that figure at 6.30pm.

The state-by-state ratings, however, followed their usual patterns: victory for Nine in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane while Seven dominated in Perth and Adelaide.

Nine’s A Current Affair attracted 1.13 million, beating Seven’s stalwart Home and Away, which drew 939,000.

Ten’s top-rating program was its Eyewitness News at No. 17 with 619,000 viewers.

Nine won the battle of the game shows with Hot Seat pulling 632,000 compared to Seven’s Million Dollar Minute, which had 420,000.

But Seven’s Sunrise was the top-rating breakfast show with 341,000 metropolitan viewers, while Nine’s Today had 299,000. Though both programs cracked the top 30, Ten’s rival Wake-Up was ranked in the 230th position with an audience of just 45,000.

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AFL would be ‘very silly’ to ignore Alastair Clarkson, says Jeff Kennett

Former Hawthorn president Jeff Kennett, who worked with Clarkson for six years including the club’s 2008 premiership, said the Hawks coach’s blueprint made a lot of sense and implored the AFL to listen to him.
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He also rejected the assertion that Clarkson’s comments about Essendon’s supplements saga were an unnecessary shot at suspended coach Hird.

“I don’t see this as an attack on James Hird at all. I see it as a constructive contribution by Clarkson to the administration of the game,” said Kennett, who has also had his differences with Clarkson, calling for his job to be “reviewed” after the Hawks lost to Geelong in round one last year.

“So I think the AFL would be very silly not to listen to the suggestions of Alastair Clarkson.”

However, Kennett disagreed with Clarkson in relation to Andrew Demetriou’s handling of the situation and that of the AFL.

Clarkson had expressed strong sympathy for Demetriou and likened his efforts to handle the saga throughout the 2013 season to “treading a pathway through a minefield”.

However Kennett believed the AFL’s management of the saga had been “appalling”.

“I think Andrew [Demetriou] handled it [the supplements saga] very badly and I think he actually – through some of the things he said and did – added to the difficulties of the time through a lack of clarity and lack of consistency in the way he administered the code. And I think most would agree with that.”

Kennett was quick to back Clarkson’s comments on an accreditation system.

“I see this as an attempt by Alastair Clarkson to improve the quality of those people who are charged with the responsibility of coaching, particularly when he makes the point that you have be accredited to coach an under-age team, but you don’t have to be accredited to coach an AFL team.

“He has been travelling the world now for about nine years to various sporting bodies on all sides of the globe.

“So he has drawn that position from his experiences he has observed overseas. He is making comment on what he has seen overseas which he thinks will improve the quality of the administration of the game here in Australia and giving the AFL Commission the benefit of his travels.”

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WA one step closer to returning to polls for fresh Senate election

Greens Senator Scott Ludlam may face the electors again soon.Federal politics: full coverageRead the High Court judgment here
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West Australian voters are likely to return to the polls after the High Court ruled two candidates were not duly elected during last year’s federal election.

The High Court, sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns, found on Tuesday that the Sports Party’s Wayne Dropulich and the Greens’ Scott Ludlam were not duly elected but could not say who was elected in their place after more than 1300 voters were lost.

Justice Kenneth Hayne declared that because 1370 ballots disappeared between the vote and recount those voters were effectively “prevented from voting”.

He said the number of missing votes had substantially exceeded the margin between the candidates at a key point early in the count that resulted in Mr Ludlum and Mr Dropulich being elected ahead of Labor candidate Louise Pratt and Palmer United Party’s Zhenya ‘‘Dio’’ Wang.

The court will sit again on Thursday where it will consider further arguments and issues such as costs of a fresh election.

Justice Hayne rejected a submission from Mr Wang that the original count should stand or that the result could be determined by comparing results from the count and recount.

“It is neither relevant not necessary to undertake that consideration because the court must find that Mr Dropulich and Senator Ludham were not duly elected, but cannot declare who was elected,” Justice Hayne said.

“The only relief appropriate is for the election to be declared void,” he said in his judgment.

Constitutional law expert, George Williams made it clear that the court had not ordered a fresh election at this stage, as had been reported by some media outlets.

But he said the findings on Tuesday made another election very likely.

“I think you could say the writing is on the wall,” Professor Williams said.

In a statement on Tuesday, the Australian Electoral Commission noted that a fresh election could only occur once a writ has been issued by the Governor of Western Australia, Malcolm McCusker. The writ would outline key dates including for the close of the electoral roll, candidate nominations, and for election day.

Senator Ludlam told reporters outside the court in Melbourne that he thought Justice Hayne had made the “right call” on Tuesday.

“It’s inappropriate to disenfranchise 1300 people who voted in a free and fair election, he said.

The Greens senator who was not elected in the first WA senate count but elected in the recount, said that he believed that “the most likely outcome” would be that WA went back to the polls for a fresh election.

He also welcomed the opportunity for federal politics to be seen through the “lens” of Western Australia, rather than western Sydney.

ABC election analyst Antony Greens said that the WA governor would issue the writ for any new WA senate election, “presumably on the advice of the Prime Minister through the Governor-General”.

Palmer United Party leader Clive Palmer called on electoral commissioner Ed Killesteyn to resign “over the fiasco” of the WA vote.

Mr Palmer said that “millions of taxpayer dollars” would be wasted “due to the incompetence of the Australian Electoral Commission,” he said.

“Someone should be accountable for this mess.”

The loss of the 1370 votes has been deeply embarrassing for the electoral commission, with an independent inquiry led by Mick Keelty blaming ‘‘lax’’ and ‘‘complacent’’ practices.

Mr Keelty said that while he could not rule out that the votes had been deliberately tampered with, it was more likely they had been simply misplaced.

With Dan Harrison

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