Dr Andrew Leigh MP

Australian people, in some comparisons with other developed, democratic nations, are underrepresented in the House of Representatives.

For a population exceeding 23 million, there are only 150 seats in that chamber of Parliament. On average there is a representative for every 153,000 people. New Zealand has a single chamber in its Parliament of 120 members; for a population one-fifth that of ours, it has only 20% fewer seats and 20% fewer representatives of its people, but this works out as one representative per 37,500.

Canada has a population greater than our own (45% greater) and its lower house, its House of Commons, has a representative total of 308 seats, more than double our own lower house (one representative per 117,000). The United Kingdom has a population of 63 million, almost three times our own, but its House of Commons has over four times the number of ours (650). This equates to one representative per 97,000 people. The Netherlands has a population around 20% smaller than ours, but the same number of representatives in its lower house (111,000 represented by one person).

The number of members in Australia’s House of Representatives has been adjusted over time to account for population increase, but the last time this was done was almost 15 years ago, the population was almost 19 million. Since then, there are only two additional representatives, but 4 million additional people to represent. Rather than increase the number gradually every decade, the number should be increased to 225 to allow for future population changes.

We, the undersigned, call for the number of seats in the Australian House of Representatives to be increased to 225 to increase representation in Australia.

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The Increasing political representation in Australia petition to Dr Andrew Leigh MP was written by Jy Drowley and is in the category Politics at GoPetition.