Let’s check those dates

First –  a rule that applies to the application of s44:

The majority in Sykes disagreed.  They said that ‘incapable of being chosen’ takes the relevant time back to when you nominate.

So when candidate x nominates they cannot be a dual citizen. So step up Bill Shorten:

Mr Shorten’s office was forced to clarify that he sent his Form RN (the application to renounce British citizenship) and paid the relevant fee to the UK Home ­Office in May 2006. A spokesman said it was approved by the British ­government in June 2006, the same month he ceased being a British citizen.

Sounds okay – after all, the election was in November 2007. But … from the TURC testimony (emphasis added and speakers names added):

Mr Stoljar: And going over to the next page, paragraph A, “What commencement date applies to this part?” It says “28 February 2006“. Is that your handwriting?

Mr Shorten: No.

Mr Stoljar: Whose handwriting is it?

Mr Shorten: I don’t know, but it could well have been Mr Wilson’s. I don’t know. Actually, I’d be guessing. I don’t know.

Mr Stoljar: Was that the date on which you obtained preselection?

Mr Shorten: Yes. Yes.

It would appear that Bill Shorten was a dual citizen at the time he sought and gained preselection.

Now the Turnbull government has been far too nice about this – if they suspect that members of the opposition are in breach of s44 they should simply refer them to the High Court and be done. Certainly I think Bill Shorten has some explaining to do.

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32 Responses to Let’s check those dates

  1. Mike of Marion

    Turnbull hasn’t the guts to call Shorten on it – it will just quietly fade away.

  2. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    Turnbull hasn’t the guts to call Shorten on it – it will just quietly fade away.

    Turnbull is far too busy being the gentleman. He will never go further with this.

  3. Carbon Emmitter

    Perhaps Turncoat has worked in America and or has a Pommy connection – how do we explain his reluctance to get into Shorten/Labor?

  4. Gibbo

    Turnbull is far too busy being the gentleman. He will never go further with this.

    If by “gentleman” you mean “tin-eared idiot with no ability whatsoever combined with a complete inability to fight for any principle not supported by Marxism” then you are about right.

  5. Fleeced

    It would appear that Bill Shorten was a dual citizen at the time he sought and gained preselection.

    We’re all playing bush-lawyer here, but what has the date of preselection by the party got to do with the date of nomination?

  6. zyconoclast

    Turnbull is far too busy being the gentleman. He will never go further with this.

    It Maocolm’s job to destroy the Liberal Party, not the ALP.

    Shorten, Wong, Albanese, and the Scots bloke all get a free pass.

  7. Pyrmonter

    Nomination isn’t the same as preselection: nominations open after the HoR is dissolved and writs are issued for the election, whereas preselection occurs months (conceivably more than a year) earlier. In the 2007 election, writs were issued in October 2007. On that basis, Shortstuff is well within time:

    http://www.aec.gov.au/Elections/Federal_Elections/2007/Timetable.htm

    On the topic of the government going soft: maybe. But it may also be that the ALP simply have better administrative staff, just as they have better campaign staff. The standard on the coalition side isn’t high, and hasn’t been raised by the rise in the past 2 decades of the staffer class that yielded such political geniuses as Joe Hockey and Peta Credlin.

  8. Robert Mc

    It would appear that Bill Shorten was a dual citizen at the time he sought and gained preselection.

    We’re all playing bush-lawyer here, but what has the date of preselection by the party got to do with the date of nomination?

    Got it in one, Fleeced. The date of pre-selection by the Party is irrelevant. The writs for the 2007 November Election were issued on 14 October 2007. That’s the earliest date that could apply to nominations to stand as candidates in that election. Shorten ceased to be a British citizen in June 2006, 16 months earlier.

  9. Crossie

    Isn’t Malcolm’s grandmother mother English?

  10. John64

    The Libs are going soft because they have so much more to lose – Government.

    Any by-election held in the immediate future won’t result in an ALP seat going to the Libs but sure could lead to a seat held by the Libs either going to Labor or an independent.

    Those in the know reckon there are up to a dozen Members in the HoR with serious S44 doubts hanging over them – on both sides of the chamber.

    This is despite the ALP “having rigorous vetting processes”.

  11. Rabz

    This is despite the ALP “having rigorous vetting processes”

    As “mind mah tay” Cameron and Ying Yang Pong will attest.

  12. Robert Mc

    Sorry. Howard called the Election on 14 October 2007. The writs were issued 3 days later on 17 October 2007, which is the earliest date that Shorten, or anyone else could have nominated. Practically, as the writs were not issued until 6.00pm, it is likely that no-one nominated until the next day, 18 October 2007.

  13. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    As “mind mah tay” Cameron

    I have often thought that the hardest working person in Parliament is the unfortunate individual tasked with translating Senator Cameron’s unintelligible grunts, into the English language.

  14. John64

    This is despite the ALP “having rigorous vetting processes”

    As “mind mah tay” Cameron and Ying Yang Pong will attest.

    The Daily Telegraph does seem to be pretty close to nailing the former Mayor of Canberra as an Ecuadorean. If one Liars domino falls others will follow as the “rigorous vetting processes” shtick will collapse.

  15. I am the Walras, Equilibrate, and Price-Take

    Please God let this be the torpedo that sinks Mr Chiquita Mushrooms.

  16. Ubique

    Shorten ceased to be a British citizen in June 2006, 16 months earlier.

    How do we know this? Has Electricity Bill produced the documentary evidence?

  17. Suburban Boy

    Two problems with your argument, Sinc.

    Firstly, as other readers have pointed out, pre-selection dates are irrelevant, it’s the date of nomination for the election to Parliament that matters for section 44.

    Secondly, even if Shorten had been ineligible for Parliament back in 2007, that would not make him ineligible now, as he was certainly eligible when re-elected in 2016. (This point applies equally to any other MP who was invalidly elected at any time before the 2016 election.) A political embarrassment but no legal obstacle.

  18. Jo Smyth

    Do you remember all those other nasty allegations against Shorten. They all quietly went away. So will this. Nobody but nobody has the guts to do anything about anybody in the Labor Party so forget it.

  19. John Constantine

    The Shortfilth being despised by the proles is the only political resource available to the turnfailure black hand team.

    They focus on the contempt for shorten, denying what it means for the black handers to lose forty seats to the despised shorten in three years.

  20. duncanm

    Turnbull hasn’t the guts …

    pretty much the story of his leadership

  21. Robbo

    “Turnbull hasn’t the guts to call Shorten on it – it will just quietly fade away.

    Turnbull is far too busy being the gentleman. He will never go further with this.”

    I agree he has no guts but he is no gentleman either. Turnbull is snivelling little wannabe who will do, and say, anything to promote himself. No guts, no class, no loyalty and very little competence.

  22. old bloke

    Crossie
    #2485743, posted on September 1, 2017 at 9:34 pm

    Isn’t Malcolm’s grandmother mother English?

    That doesn’t matter if she was, British citizenship is extended to only one generation (Malcolm’s mother), and not to Malcolm himself. I would be interested to know if Malcolm’s mother claimed New Zealand citizenship when she left Australia to remarry and work in New Zealand. If she did become a New Zealand citizen, then Malcolm is in the same boat as the hapless Barnaby.

    Shorten may have renounced his British citizenship on time, but what about his Irish citizenship? His paternal grandfather was Irish, and Irish citizenship is extended for two generations, unlike the British citizenship which is extended to one generation only.

    Has anyone checked Pat Dodson’s citizenship? His father was Irish (to the best of my knowledge), so Labor’s indigenous senator may well be an Irishman.

  23. Nathan

    Based on the wording would the case be he was ineligible when he sat in his first parliament but was eligible in subsequent parliaments? Not trying to give peanut head an out here just interested if preselection is a one off for members or do they have to be re-preselected for every election?

  24. mundi

    Whats preselection got to do with anything? Isn’t that an internal matter for labor?

  25. Delta A

    Those in the know reckon there are up to a dozen Members in the HoR with serious S44 doubts hanging over them – on both sides of the chamber.

    This is why neither Shorten nor Mal want to push the issue.

  26. Andrew

    Hypothetically: The Corrupt Yoonyun Official Party maintains its “great internal procedures” defence. None are referred to the HCA.

    Later, irrefutable evidence emerges – the CYOP contains dual citizens.

    Are they now in trouble? Does a mere oversight turn into a conspiracy?

  27. Peter Castieau

    Given that there are now seven (I think) MP’s falling foul of sec44, there surely must be more.

    Labor and the Liberals are the only ones against an audit.

    These two parties are the reason that this country is fukced, and both of them know that there are multiple breaches of 44 on both sides which if exposed would result in pandemonium!

    They know!

  28. J.H.

    …. all ’tis speculation. Until there is an audit on the citizenship status and timelines provided for all politicians in the Parliament, there is nothing anyone can do but take their collective word on their status. Sorta sucks really doesn’t it?

    You would have thought that the system would be designed to be a little more proactive in ensuring compliance with the Constitutional requirements…..

    ….. and secondly, forget Russian and Chinese spies. How about random Kiwis and Canadians wanderin’ about in our halls of power….. How come ASIO didn’t know there were foreigners in our Parliament and Senate? What the hell are we paying those people for?

  29. J.H.

    ….. No, Really? Where was ASIO or ASIS in this? How come they didn’t know the legal status of our Parliamentarians? Isn’t it their job to know, or at least scrutinize?

  30. Peter Castieau

    It’s just another, in a conga line of reasons, that the political establishment of Labor and Liberal must be completely rejected.
    They are both beyond redemption.
    They represent everything that is wrong with our country.

  31. John Constantine

    The great internal procedures of the filth simply mean using get up and socialist alliance and blm and animal rights groups to act as dirty foreign funded militias to attack their enemies, while the politicians just take normal clean bribes.

  32. Ms Smith

    “Turnbull hasn’t the guts to call Shorten on it – it will just quietly fade away.
    Turnbull is far too busy being the gentleman. He will never go further with this.”

    Sounds like collusion to me. Enough to p— anyone off!

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