KEY decisions around party preferences will be decided in the next two days as electoral commission nomination deadlines loom.
Senate preference deals are due to be lodged with the AEC by noon on Saturday, just 24 hours after the final nomination of candidates and ballot order is revealed.
That announcement will spark a frenzy of horse-trading and deal- making among parties - which will be particularly important for Senate candidates.
In Tasmania, 80 per cent of voters vote "above the line", giving their number one vote to a party or candidate and allowing them to allocate their preference.
If the Greens cannot secure preferences from Labor or micro- parties in the Senate, they will most likely need to reach a quota in their own right to secure a seat for Peter Whish-Wilson.
However, the major parties claim to have polling putting the Greens' statewide vote slightly below on the 14.3 per cent needed to achieve that.
Bob Brown, who is negotiating the Greens' preference deals, rejected those figures.
``Greens always poll much higher in the Senate than in the house [of Representatives]. Show us the Senate poll that says otherwise,'' Dr Brown said.
``Peter will win a quota in his own right, it's just a question of where Green preferences will flow.''
Preferences came to the forefront of the national agenda yesterday when Liberal leader Tony Abbott directed his party to put the Greens behind Labor on how-to-vote cards in all House of Representatives seats; a decision that could have ramifications in Tasmania.
In 2010, independent Andrew Wilkie won Denison from Labor with a majority of Greens and 80 per cent of Liberal preferences.
If those preference flows are repeated, Mr Wilkie's improved profile should see him easily retain the seat.
However, Labor hopes for a higher proportion of Green preferences in 2013 and Mr Abbott's tough talk on minority government will see the Liberals place ALP candidate Jane Austin over Mr Wilkie on the Liberal how-to-vote.
Both federal leaders ruled out making a deal with the Greens or independents in the event of a hung Parliament yesterday, in a pledge reminiscent of Tasmanian leaders before the 2010 election.
Anyone looking to make an last-minute decision to stand as an independent has until noon today to lodge a nomination form and deposit - $1000 for a house candidate and $2000 for the Senate - to the AEC.