More on Senate Preferences

Pirate Party

The possibility of people getting elected to the Senate with virtually no public support has been greater coverage, with a piece in today’s SMH and Antony Green letting fly about it on the ABC this morning. http://youtu.be/xT7t8Xt7qms Given this is how the Senate voting system works, it’s probably idealistic to hope that people wouldn’t try […]

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The full Senate results

The Senate contest in Queensland was formally declared today, and the results in other states and territories will be officially declared over the next week or so.  The understandable focus on who would end up forming government has mean there has been very little attention given to the results in the various Senate contests at […]

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Wild Rivers

Contention over Queensland’s  Wild Rivers legislation has been bubbling along for quite a while now. Unfortunately, as with many issues which become polarised, each “side” is focused on defending their position, which has meant that some important underlying issues are not getting the attention they deserve. I’ve just had a piece on this topic published […]

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Jack Evans: Another Democrat obituary

News has come through that Jack Evans, a pivotal person in the founding and development of the Australian Democrats, has died at the age of 80. I’ve previously written about other former Democrats when they have passed away, namely Sid Spindler, and Don Chipp.  Whilst its dangerous to single people out, Sid, Don and Jack were amongst the most […]

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Why our Parliaments don’t work as well as they should (or our governments get away with too much)

If you are only going to read one thing about how Australia’s federal Parliament works – and more importantly how it doesn’t work – read this fabulous piece by the long-standing Clerk of the Senate, Harry Evans. Among many things, he highlights the fact that the supposed ‘Westminster system’ we are repeatedly told Australia has, is […]

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Babies in the Senate

I wasn’t going to comment on the story about the Senate President ordering the removal of the baby of a female Senator, Sarah Hanson-Young, who had brought her child in with her for a Senate vote. It just seemed so obviously an over-reaction by the President that I felt it barely merited comment. The Senate […]

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Questioning Question Time

Despite the disproportionate amount of attention often given to Question Time in the federal parliament, I have long felt that it is not only an absurd parody of an accountability mechanism, it can also distort the direction and content of political debate. So I was pleased to see last week that outgoing Senate President, long-serving […]

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