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Oz legislation

the strike and the cross

1856 Tasmanian Electoral Act

Talented Mr Boothby

Wakefield and ballot


The Australian Ballot

Secret ballot - not an Australian first
360kb PDF
250kb html

AEC links



Australian Dictionary
of Biography











Enrolling The People

The Australian Ballot in America

From Los Angeles Times August 21 1892, pg 9

A "reader's question" is answered at left, with diagrams of compartments, where officials are situated etc. Before this reform, most American states used a form of secret ballot that wasn't very secret and also susceptible to fraud. The Australian system involved government printed ballot slips.

The system described here has a few variations on the original, including party lists. Note the mention of the 'Tasmanian Dodge' (aka the 'Simpson system'), which got many mentions in Australia, New Zealand and the Uk as well, as a possible way to "beat" the Australian ballot, but is probably an urban myth.

If the poor quality of print makes reading difficult, open this pdf in new page and zoom in.