INDISPUTE: Cathy McGowan won’t speculate on electoral fraud claims

Posted January 16th, 2019 by admin and filed in 南京夜网论坛
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– Campaign ‘did not push vote shifting’
Nanjing Night Net

INDI MP Cathy McGowan’s election campaign is under the heavy scrutiny of the Australian Electoral Commission amid claims of electoral fraud, but the independent MP will not speculate what it could mean for her politically.

It is understood the commission’s new integrity unit is investigating allegations that some young supporters of Ms McGowan switched their electorate details back to Indi before last year’s election, despite no longer living, working or studying in the area.

Those votes may have contributed to Ms McGowan’s 439-vote win over former Liberal member SophieMirabella.

Voices 4 Indi, the grassroots movement behind Ms McGowan’s campaign, has denied any wrongdoing and said it highlighted a problemyoung, rural people moving away for study faced across Australia, in that they often were still deeply connected to their home towns.

Ms McGowan herself said she would wait for the results of the commission investigation before commenting further.

“I’m very supportive of (the commission) and I encourage their investigation of any complaints,” she said.

“It’s important peoplehave confidence in thesystem.”

A Liberal Party spokesperson yesterday said: “The Liberal Party is pleased that the Australian Electoral Commission is looking into these matters. These enrolments should be closely scrutinised by the Australian Electoral Commission.”

Mrs Mirabella did not return calls yesterday.

Ms McGowan said she was unaware of the investigation until a News Corp Australia journalist contacted her for comment on Friday, the day before the story was published.

News Corp reported the Liberal Party raised concerns about electoral fraud in an unnamed seat earlier this year, and that the enrolments of about 20 Indi voters were under scrutiny so far.

This included one young woman who was studying in Melbourne but changed her enrolment back to her parents’ Indi address in July.

Allegations have also arisen that “Indi expats” — supporters who had moved away but returned to work on the election — colluded in encouraging people to switch electorates.

There is no suggestion Ms McGowan knew of or encouraged any of the conduct.

According to the Australian Electoral Commission website, the address voters register under must be their main residence for at least a month.

The commission also stipulates that students away from home can remain on the roll in their home electorate.

— with AAP

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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