What Next? Australia Prepares For Five By-Elections After High Court Ruling

Tax-payers can expect to foot hefty bill of four by-elections, as four MPs state their plan to re-contest their seats in upcoming by-elections.

What you need to know
  • Four electorates prepare to go to the polls.
  • The MPs at the centre of the latest citizenship scandal have all declared their intention to re-contest.
  • How much will tax-payers expect to pay for the by-elections?

Just when you thought it was over, the citizenship saga strikes again.

The fallout from Wednesday's High Court decision on dual citizenship saw former Labor Senator Katy Gallagher, Labor MPs Josh Wilson, Justine Keay and Susan Lamb and Centre Alliance MP Rebekha Sharkie all resign.

And resignations mean by-elections. Five by-elections to be exact, which will be held in four states from as early as next month.

The seats of Mayo (SA), Fremantle (WA), Braddon (TAS) and Longman (QLD) will be contested, as well as the seat of Perth (WA) following the resignation of Tim Hammond.

What Happens Now?

By-elections will be called in four electorates and with each member who has fulfilled the citizenship requirements will be eligible to run.

All of the MPs that resigned on Wednesday told Parliament that they will recontest their seats.

Justine Keay told Parliament she will recontest the Tasmanian seat of Braddon in her resignation speech on Wednesday.

"I will nominate for pre-selection to contest the election in the seat of Braddon, the people in my community deserve a representative that cares about them," Keay said.

Susan Lamb will also run for election in the seat of Longman, following her resignation on Wednesday. 

"I will be resigning as the Member for Longman, and I will re-contest my seat in a by-election," Lamb said.

Josh Wilson, of Western Australia's Fremantle electorate has also said he will put his hand up for re-election in the  upcoming by-election.

"I will prepare to contest the forthcoming by-election in Fremantle," he told the Speaker of the House of Representative during his resignation speech.

Rebekha Sharkie, of Nick Xenophon's Centre Alliance Party, has also declared she will run in a by-election for the seat of Western Australian seat of Mayo.

"I don't believe my job here is finished, I remain fiercely committed to continuing to represent the people of Mayo, the community I love," she said.

How Much will it Cost?

Millions, according to the latest stats.

Latest statistics from the Australian Electoral Commission show a 2015 by-election in the Western Australian seat of Canning cost tax-payers over $2,000,000.

Ten years ago, Mayo held a by-election at the cost of more than $620,000, but this amount is set to rise exponentially this time around.