The lost WA Senate votes have cost two top AEC officials their jobs following the High Court’s decision to call a fresh poll.
The Western Australian Senate vote debacle has claimed two senior scalps at the Australian Electoral Commission.
Australia’s electoral commissioner Ed Killesteyn quit on Friday, along with WA’s electoral officer Peter Kramer.
The commission has been widely condemned for its mishandling of the 2013 Senate election in Western Australia in which 1370 ballots went missing during a recount.
The error was so grave the High Court, sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns, this week ordered that a fresh election be held.
Mr Killesteyn, a distinguished public servant who was reappointed for a five-year term in January, will remain on personal leave until his resignation takes effect on July 4.
His deputy Tom Rogers will act in the role until the government appoints a new commissioner.
Mr Kramer’s resignation will take effect on May 9 but his last day on duty is February 28.
Kathy Mitchell will be acting in his position until a replacement is found.
Special Minister of State Michael Ronaldson said it was important the community have confidence in the electoral commission.
“The government will in due course announce a new electoral commissioner who will be charged with the restoration of that confidence,” Senator Ronaldson said.
Senator Ronaldson said in December that the commissioner needed to accept “full responsibility” for what occurred.
“Trust in our democratic institutions is paramount,” the minister said in a December 6 statement.
The date of the fresh election has yet to be set.
But it is expected to be on the agenda of a strategy meeting involving Prime Minister Tony Abbott, deputy leader Julie Bishop, Liberals federal director Brian Loughnane and WA coalition members on Monday morning in Canberra.
Labor electoral spokesman Gary Gray said Mr Killesteyn had handled recent events with great integrity.
“I thank Ed Killesteyn for his dedication, service and integrity,” he said.
He understood Mr Killesteyn had always intended to leave the role before the next federal election due in 2016.
Mr Rogers was involved in monitoring the conduct of the Griffith by-election in Queensland on February 8 and has represented the commission at inquiries into the conduct of the 2013 election.
The AEC declined to comment on the resignation.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Tony Abbott told reporters before the resignation announcement that he expected to spend “plenty of time” in WA during the campaign.
He said the coalition would be campaigning on the repeal of the carbon and mining taxes to ease pressure on business and households.
“Let’s be absolutely crystal clear – the carbon tax and mining tax are anti-Western Australian taxes,” he said.
“We best support Western Australia by getting rid of these taxes and that means voting for coalition candidates.”
AAP understands April 5 is firming as the WA Senate election date and an announcement could come early next week.