How to avoid wasting your vote in the upcoming federal election in 2022

Published: 12:06 EST, 20 May 2022 | Updated: 16:38 EST, 20 May 2022

It has probably felt like the longest campaign in history by this point, but the time to cast your vote in the upcoming federal election in 2022 has finally arrived.

After forty days of ruthless campaigning, massive spending promises, and plenty of fiery moments, the fierce battle between Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Labor leader Anthony Albanese has come to a close. The two men engaged in a fierce battle for the position of prime minister.

The Labor and Liberal parties are running neck and neck in some seats of the election, while in other seats, popular Independents are getting ready to nab a spot on Canberra's Capital Hill. The election is being fiercely contested.

Because it is anticipated that there will be significant changes made to both the Senate and the House of Representatives, it is imperative that you make sure your vote is counted.

Both the leader of the Labor Party, Anthony Albanese, and Prime Minister Scott Morrison are vying for the position of leader of the Australian government.

On voting day

On May 21, you'll need to cast your vote at a polling place, and you'll need to do so between the hours of 8:00 AM and 6:00 PM.

You can find the location of the polling booth that is closest to you by using the reliable website provided by the Australian Electoral Commission.

And don't forget to double check to see what level of sausage sizzle supply your local booth provides; the Democracy Sausage website will show you exactly what kinds of food and drinks to anticipate at the event.

There is a strict time limit for voting, so don't show up at 6 o'clock. 01pm, as it is highly likely that you will be denied entry and informed to anticipate a $22 fine in the mail.

On the website of the AEC, you can also find a list of candidates who are running for office in your electorate.

After providing your full name and address to an election day volunteer, who will tick you off in their huge book of names, you will be handed a small piece of green paper and a larger sheet of white paper. On the green piece of paper, you will write your full name, and on the white paper, you will write your full address.

On May 17, a volunteer with the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) assists a voter at a voting center that allows early voting in Sydney.

It's called the House of Representatives.

The piece of paper that is slightly smaller and green in color belongs to the House of Representatives.  

On this piece of paper, you will vote for the representative in your electorate that you believe will best represent you and the other people who live in your immediate area.

If you do not number each and every one of the boxes on this sheet of paper, your ballot will be regarded as "informal," and therefore it will not be counted.

In order for your vote to be counted in the House of Representatives election, you will need to put a number in each of the blank spaces on your ballot.

When you enter the voting booth, you will most likely be accosted by party volunteers who are eager to give you a "how to vote" card associated with their organization.

In the event that you intended to cast your ballot for a specific electorate or representative, these can be helpful because they will also rank the remaining candidates in accordance with how your preferred candidate ranks them.

However, you are not required to accept or use their how to vote card in any way, and you are free to disregard any and all of the volunteers in the obstacle course if you have already made up your mind.

Whatever the case may be, just make sure to put a number in each and every box before you return the paper.

Even if you want to give your top preferences to someone else, the most important decision in the vast majority of seats is which of the two major parties you will preference in the order of preference.  

Independent Helen Haines' how-to vote card She is the current member for Indi, which is located in the north-eastern part of Victoria.

On the how-to-vote card that Barnaby Joyce distributes, he instructs his constituents on how they should vote in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.


Your vote for senators will be recorded on the white ballot paper that has been handed to you. On this ballot, you will choose representatives from your state or territory.

Bills that are proposed in the House of Representatives, which is almost always controlled by the government, are subject to the checks and balances provided by the Senate.

Most of the time, the Senate is composed of a sufficient number of independents and members of minor parties to ensure that there is a delicate balance of power between the administration and the opposition.

This means that either side has to convince them to support or oppose a bill in order to get their vote, which forces them to compromise and serves as a check on legislation that is flawed.  

On this piece of paper, you have the option to cast your vote in one of two different ways: either above or below the line.

Voting above the line will result in You have to give at least six boxes a number.

If you vote below the line, you have to put in twice as much effort: You have to assign at least 12 numbers to the boxes.

If you vote below the line, you get to decide where your preferences go, which is a significant benefit given that parties frequently make behind-the-scenes agreements to preference each other.

In previous elections, these deals led to candidates from microparties and independents receiving Senate seats despite receiving less than one percent of the vote.

You are not required to stop ordering the candidates after filling in six or 12 boxes; rather, you are free to do so until all of the boxes on the ballot have been occupied, regardless of whether you vote above or below the line.

However, you must make sure that all of your numbers are completely above the line, or that all of your votes are completely below the line, as filling out every single box will cause your vote to be nullified.

In the Senate election, you have the option of voting above or below the line.

When your vote is considered to be "informal"

A vote that is formal is one that is conducted in the proper manner and that the Australian Electoral Commission is able to count.

Because an informal vote is not counted, all of your efforts to get up bright and early on a Saturday morning were in vain.

There are a variety of factors that go into determining whether or not your vote is considered formal.  

  • It is a blank document or there are no marks on it.
  • In some of the boxes, you've written numbers instead of a checkmark or a cross.
  • The minimum number of checkmarks required has not been completed.
  • On it is printed information that can be used to identify you as a voter.

And yes, a ballot paper on which you have drawn only a penis will be counted as informal and thrown in the bin; however, if the ballot is valid in all other respects, you are free to doodle all over it.

If you number your ballot paper in ascending order, it is still possible for your vote to be counted.

When your vote amounts to nothing more than a "donkey vote."

Informal votes are disregarded, but so-called "donkey votes" most certainly are.

When voters number their ballot papers from left to right or from top to bottom, beginning with one and working their way up, this is known as a donkey vote.

The possibility of receiving a few thousand additional votes as a result of votes cast by donkeys is the primary motivation behind candidates' intense desire to be listed first on the ballot.

However, the candidates have no influence over where their names will appear on the ballot.

The order is determined by the Australian Electoral Commission through a process known as a "blind draw," which involves the commission essentially pulling all of the candidates' names out of a hat.

Since this is the case, if you truly do not want to take part in the election, it is recommended that you vote informally rather than donkey vote.  

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