Monday, December 10, 2007

Bailey claims discovery of two votes

FORMER Howard government minister Fran Bailey says electoral officials have found two of the eight votes she needs to retain her Melbourne seat.

On Saturday night, after a final count of votes, Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) officers announced Labor's Rob Mitchell had beaten Ms Bailey by seven votes in McEwen.

Ms Bailey described as "extraordinary" the discovery of the two votes today.

She said the news, reported by her campaign manager, reinforced the case for a recount.

The former tourism and small business minister has lodged a formal request with the AEC for a recount and identified nine areas of concern about the poll and counting of votes in the seat she has held for 14 years.

"After I lodged an application my campaign manager was notified that even though the counting was meant to be completed on Saturday night, they have found another two votes for me, so I'm now five votes behind," Ms Bailey said.

"This is quite extraordinary and this is further evidence of why we need a recount in McEwen."

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