Overview of the 2018 State election

Several significant legislative changes were introduced before the 2018 State election, including new funding and political donation disclosure laws, restrictions on signs near voting centres, and allowing voters to vote early without having a specific reason for doing so.

Statistical overview

2014 State election 2018 State election
Total enrolment 3,806,301 4,139,326
Number of candidates 896 887
Voter turnout 93.02% 90.16%
Number of election day voting centres 1,786 1,794
% of total votes counted on election night 62.9% 79%
Informal voting rate 5.22% 5.83%
% of voters voting below the line on Region ballot papers 6.08% 8.87%
Number of early and postal votes 1,207,538 1,641,687
General postal voters 54,370 98,842

Voting behavior

There was a significant increase in voting ahead of election day, with 44.19% of voters casting their ballot at an early voting centre or by post. There was also a strong uptake in Telephone Assisted Voting, with 1,199 eligible voters using this channel (only people unable to vote without assistance due to blindness, low vision or a motor impairment were able to use this service).

The informal voting rate for the Legislative Assembly was higher than the 2014 State election, in line with a gradual trend. Blank ballot papers were the most common form of informal voting, followed by papers marked with number 1 only.

There was strong engagement from voters with the VEC’s digital presence – two million people visited the VEC’s website during the election period, and 1.3 million people used the online Voting Centre Locator.

Voting centre at Footscray Primary School

Voting centre at Footscray Primary School