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Wednesday, 2 November 1921

Senator E D MILLEN (NEW SOUTH WALES) - Honorable senators will remember that Senator Thomas brought this matter under notice some 'time ago. I have now obtained from the Chief Electoral Officer the following statement in reference thereto : -

The accompanying statement -relating to the rejection of ballot-papers at the scrutiny in the West Sydney bye-election, held on the 3rd September, 1921, is submitted for the Minister's information in connexion with the inquiry of Senator Millen, dated 9th September, 1921. The data from which the statement has been prepared was obtained from the officers who actually conducted- the scrutiny, and for all practical purposes may be taken to be correct. It will, of course, be understood that the law does not permit of scaled and indorsed parcels containing ballot-papers rejected in an election being opened unless the election is disputed, and then only by an order of the Court. The election was contested by four candidates, and it, therefore, became necessary for the voters to indicate the order of their preference 'for the whole of the candidates, by the use of consecutive numbers. Large posters, setting forth the requirements of the law, were exhibited in the polling booths for the information of voters, whose attention was also specially drawn to the printed directions on the ballotpapers.

Statement showing total number of ballotpapers rejected at the scrutiny in the West Sydney bye-election, held on 3rd September,1921, the reason for rejection, and the approximate number rejected under each head.


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