Labor withdraws from Ripon election results dispute

Labor has withdrawn from its Ripon election results dispute, ending the Court of Disputed Returns hearing over last year’s wafer-thin November election result which saw Liberal Louise Staley retain the seat over Labor candidate for Ripon Sarah De Santis.

The Victorian Labor Party formally withdrew its petition to dispute the 15-vote election result in the Court of Disputed Returns on Monday afternoon.

According to media reports, the case was heard on Monday morning and was adjourned until Tuesday, however Labor’s decision was made before the case could continue.

Victorian Labor marginal seats directory Kosmos Samaras said “upon close inspection of our scrutineers’ notes, the party determined that in a recount, the result will not change”.

Ms De Santis was originally declared the provisional winner by 31 votes, until a recount was conducted which saw Ms Staley retain the seat by just 15 votes, with the VEC declaring her the Member for Ripon on December 8.

Ms De Santis said she was “honoured and grateful” to have been selected as Labor’s candidate for Ripon.

For more on this story see Page 5 of The Advertiser, Friday, May 10

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