Clive Palmer on the campaign trail.
Clive Palmer on the campaign trail.

Cash for the count: political parties' $53m vote windfall

AUSTRALIA'S political parties have shared in a $53 million windfall, with newcomer Palmer United Party to get $2.2 million, in line with how many people voted for them at the September election.

The Australian Electoral Commission on Wednesday confirmed $53,367,240 in payments were made to 12 political parties and nine independents around the nation.

Under election funding rules, every party or independent that scores at least 4% of the primary vote gets public funding in line with the number of votes for the candidate or party.

The AEC has confirmed the payments represent 99% of all election funding, with the remainder to be paid out as the count on seats including Fairfax on the Sunshine Coast are completed.

Again the major parties shared the vast majority of the funding, with victors the Liberal Party getting $23 million and their Coalition partners The Nationals scoring just over $3 million.

The Labor Party will get just over $20.1 million for their part, while their former minority government partners, The Greens, will score $5.3 million.

In another positive for the Queensland-based Palmer United Party, mining magnate Clive Palmer's political movement will get more than $2.2 million in its first election.

The Liberal Democratic Party has also secured a $1 million windfall, likely partly due to its candidate and Senator-elect David Leyonhjelm's enviable position on the top of New South Wales Senate ballot papers.

Other voting groups including Katter's Australian Party, the Nick Xenophon Group, the Northern Territory Country Liberals and Family First, will share the rest of the spoils.

Minor parties Bullet Train for Australia and the Christian Democratic Party (Fred Nile Group) also got $24,283 and $8654, respectively.

Victorian independent Cathy McGowan, who unseated former Liberal frontbencher Sophie Mirabella, will get the most of any individual candidate, with more than $68,000 towards her election costs.

Election funding payments to political parties:

Liberal Party of Australia: $23,103,312.83
Australian Labor Party: $20,195,147.98
Australian Greens: $5,356,184.97
National Party of Australia: $3,076,611.83
Palmer United Party: $2,202,044.07
Liberal Democratic Party: $1,033,845.36
Nick Xenophon Group: $636,127.83
Country Liberals (NT): $207,512.94
Katter's Australian Party: $166,711.35
Family First: $103,724.45
Bullet Train for Australia: $24,283.90
Christian Democratic Party (Fred Nile Group): $8,654.79

SOURCE: Australian Electoral Commission

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