Broadcaster Derryn Hinch elected to Senate, Greens retain balance of power
Controversial broadcaster Derryn Hinch has officially won a seat in Parliament, while the Greens are set to retain the balance of power, after Senate results were announced in Victoria.
It takes the
total number of elected Senate crossbenchers to seven, with Pauline Hanson and others expected to join that list when results are declared in NSW and Queensland later this week.
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Also elected to represent Victoria were five Liberal/National senators, four Labor senators and two Greens: the party's leader Richard Di Natale and Senator Janet Rice.
The left-wing party takes its total number of senators to seven, and should pick up at least one more in both Queensland and NSW, giving it a total of nine.
Despite losing one senator - Robert Simms - in South Australia, the Greens look set to retain the balance of power in the Senate, along with the crossbenchers.
That means the Greens would be able to strike deals with the Turnbull government to pass bills blocked by Labor, as it did on multinational tax avoidance and Senate voting reform.
Reflecting on the results on Wednesday, government frontbencher Christopher Pyne said the Senate voting changes had been worthwhile despite the swelling crossbench.
"Every senator, whether they're major parties or whether they're minor parties or independents, have now been elected because they actually got the requisite votes from the public," he said. "So democracy has been respected."
Ms Hanson's One Nation party was denied a seat in Victoria but still expects to take at least three Senate spots nationwide, including one in NSW.
Hinch, dubbed the "human headline" for the media attention his actions often command, will be a key figure the Turnbull government must deal with to pass legislation.
Election 'a pox on both your houses'
Senator-elect Derryn Hinch breaks down why he feels voters were attracted to the 'other' candidates in Saturday's election.
He has twice been jailed for contempt of court after he breached suppression orders to reveal details about the criminal histories of accused and convicted criminals.
Running under the banner of Derryn Hinch's Justice Party, the 72-year-old Hinch has said he would use a Senate seat to pursue harsher penalties for sex offenders.
He also described himself as "a socialist on medicine and health" during an episode of the ABC's Q&A program shortly after the election.
Officially losing their Senate spots in Victoria were the Democratic Labour Party's John Madigan and Ricky Muir of the Motoring Enthusiast Party.
"I can leave Parliament proud knowing that I gave it my best shot against the odds," Mr Muir wrote in a valedictory post on Facebook.
He said he did not regret rejecting the Turnbull government's industrial relations bills in the Senate, ultimately handing the PM his preferred double dissolution triggers.