Voting “No” to the Local Government referendum

Several Senators have federalist principles:

  • Chris Back, Liberal, WA
  • Cory Bernardi, Liberal, SA
  • David Bushby, Liberal, TAS
  • Alan Eggleston, Liberal, WA
  • David Fawcett, Liberal, SA
  • John Madigan, DLP, VIC
  • Bridget McKenzie, National, VIC
  • Dean Smith, Liberal WA

All these fine people voted against the local government referendum bill. A number of others abstained: Eric Abetz, Michaelia Cash, Richard Colbeck, Mathias Cormann,  Mitch Fifield, Bill Heffernan, Brett Mason, Scott Ryan, and Stephen Parry.

The bill passed the Senate 46 – 8.

Update I: I am reliably informed that many of the Senators who abstained did so because they are on the frontbench and cannot vote against party policy without resigning their position. They can, however, abstain. Fair enough. Of course the question really is, why is this Coalition policy?

Update II: Freedom Watch has an update of the full vote.

In addition there are some more abstentions: Michael Ronaldson, David Johnson, Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, and Sean Edwards.

Update III: According to James Paterson seven Liberal and four National senators voted for the bill. Given that 39 votes are necessary, this means that the bill only passed the Senate with Coalition support.

Update IV: James Paterson has very kindly sent me the list of the vote in the House. Disgraceful – only two Liberals voted against the bill.

This entry was posted in 2013 election. Bookmark the permalink.

39 Responses to Voting “No” to the Local Government referendum

  1. Ant says:

    They’re (the Coalition who voted for it or abstained) like the numbskull Republicans in the US Congress who are pushing through the Democrat’s scandalous immigration bill (currently at 1,190 pages), after the Senate deliberated on the final version for – wait for it – 2 days. That is, Saturday and Sunday just past.

    The bill basically grants defacto amnesty to at least 11 million illegal immigrants now, projected to be closer to 50 million by 2040, with all the goodies in the US’s welfare showbag. It also trashes the very notion of US citizenship by rewarding illegal behaviour, not to mention encouraging much more of it.

    How is this relevant to this referendum? Because, like that immigration bill, it goes further towards underpinning and entrenching the Left’s base. In this case by ensuring federal government control of local politics, where many of those little Leftie agitators you see ensconced in the bureaucracies and government get their big start.

    When in power the Left never do anything to level the playing field. NEVER! Quite the opposite.

  2. Token says:

    Do we know the reason why these people chose to abstain rather than register a vote against?

  3. . says:

    with all the goodies in the US’s welfare showbag.

    Quite stupid.

    It also trashes the very notion of US citizenship by rewarding illegal behaviour, not to mention encouraging much more of it.

    Don’t know if the first bit is true but the second part is correct.

    The referendum here is a way the ALP can finally centralise everything and leave powerless municipalities under it’s thumb.

    The only way the States could retaliate would be to dissolve all local Government.

  4. Tom says:

    Albanese’s disgraceful behaviour on this issue has made Australia look like a Third World dictatorship. I respected Albo before he revealed to us who he really is. He is political filth and should never hold office in this country again.

  5. Qld Skeptic says:

    Can we have a list of all those who voted in favour please?

  6. Lysander Spooner says:

    I find it astounding that we are “going” to amend the Constitution and there’s barely a story about it or talk about it anywhere.

  7. Abstain? Bloody fence sitters. Either you’re with us, or you’re against us. There is no middle ground.

  8. Tom says:

    This scandal also reveals to us the Coalition are big government socialists and can’t be trusted. There’s nothing surer, in my opinion, that, formally or informally, the centre-right is going to split after the annihilation of the left in September and there will be a large faction unafraid of crossing the floor to vote against the government on matters of principle. It won’t be a sign of weakness, but a sign of diversidy. Don’t you love it?

  9. Andrew says:

    Do we know the reason why these people chose to abstain rather than register a vote against?

    Many of them are cabinet ministers or outer cabinet ministers. People have to remember that they are voting yes to hold the referendum. It does not imply support for the actual question.

  10. Mike of Marion says:

    From day 1 I’ve said I’ll vote NO.

    For it to get over the line it needs 66.66% of the vote in 4 of the 6 Sates. Not likely

  11. Driftforge says:

    For it to get over the line it needs 66.6650% of the vote in 4 of the 6 Sates. Not likely

  12. Driftforge says:

    Tassie Libs voted 0/3/1. Good work lads.

  13. Token says:

    I find it astounding that we are “going” to amend the Constitution and there’s barely a story about it or talk about it anywhere.

    AJ was onto it today. Considering the numpties in the Libs and Nats have agreed to go bi-partisan on this issue, I suspect this will be another way 2GB gets to be the means to rally the base against the career politicians & their minders.

    He notes the state governments of WA, NSW, VIC & QLD are against the proposal, so one can imagine there will be some discussion about this from state politicians, as will the Young Liberals and a number of other organisations.

    How do we get it clear to the Federal numpties how people are naturally suspicious of bi-partisan support on any measure.

  14. Mike of Marion says:

    Thanks Driftforge – now understand ‘double majority.

    Australia

    In Australia, constitutional changes must be passed at a referendum in a majority of states (4 of the 6), and by a majority of voters nationally. Prior to 1977, the votes of citizens in the Northern Territory and the ACT did not affect the national or state-based count. After a Constitution Alteration put to referendum in 1977 and given vice-regal assent on 19 July 1977, Territorial votes contribute towards the national majority, but the Territories themselves do not count towards the majority of states. Note that the territories have very small populations.

  15. Lysander Spooner says:

    Token – yes that’s an interesting point aint it!!! Bipartisan support on something like this is rather odd according to me.

  16. Gnome says:

    If it gets up, with federal funding of $63.20 for the Yes case for every $1 for the No case, will it be legitimate?

    Will it be Australia’s first ever illegitimate Constitution amendment? Will it set a precedent? Where will the precedent lead?

    Would Labor care?

  17. OldOzzie says:

    Abbott (my Local member) is dumb on this.

    I and my Family (we have discussed it) will be voting NO

    There is too much power in Canberra, and I cannot believe that Abbott wants to spend more Australian Taxpayers money on a another bureaucracy – most local councils exiast for the employees rather than the ratepayers and are controlled by “little despots”

  18. JMH says:

    Perhaps the Coalition is banking on the NO vote on this Referendum.

    I will assist with my NO vote.

  19. H B Bear says:

    Another black mark against Abbott (and Credlin).

  20. Thanks for update 1, Sinclair. I wasn’t aware of this caveat. I withdraw my comment.

  21. Gab says:

    Update III: According to James Paterson seven Liberal and four National senators voted for the bill. Given that 39 votes are necessary, this means that the bill only passed the Senate with Coalition support.

    Disgraceful.

  22. Dr Faustus says:

    With the States opposing it’s most unlikely to get up.

    Unnecessarily dumb politics from the Coalition in going bi-partisan against the flow.

  23. DavidH says:

    Even though it passed, senators voting “for” were only 5.75 times more numerous than those “against”. So should funding for the “no” case now be increased to reflect those numbers?

  24. Token says:

    AJ on 2GB talking to Julian Leeser is the National Convener of the Citizen’s ‘no’ case against the local government referendum.

    Links may be found at that same page to discussions AJ had with Peter Reith, Peter Costello, Gary Johns & John Brogdan who have all expressed their concerns about the referendum and this disgusting funding arrangement.

  25. Lysander Spooner says:

    It is issues such as these which help distingugish “Liberal” from “Libertarian.”

  26. Infidel Tiger says:

    Another black mark against Abbott (and Credlin).

    The Abbott disaster gathers ever more steam.

  27. Infidel Tiger says:

    Update IV: James Paterson has very kindly sent me the list of the vote in the House. Disgraceful – only two Liberals voted against the bill.

    Dennis Jensen is an excellent and principled member.

    Probably why he is hated by the dripping wets in the Liberal Party and why they were giving him grief with pre-selection.

  28. Driftforge says:

    Actually, its remarkable in some ways that there hasn’t been a simple block vote on this. Not very often in the Parliament that the opposition or government vote splits on an issue – so irregular that no one even takes note of who votes which way. Lists like we are seeing here are rare beasts…

  29. Helen Armstrong says:

    Abbott is in favour of getting rid of the states, according to IPA.

  30. Fred Lenin says:

    This is fascist centralism,when we destroy alp green filth,we can start to correct the other professional political bludgers,federal,state and local,tax all political donations at 90cents in the dollar,cut politicians wages and perks,make parliamentary positions part time and low paid with no super ,pensions or perks,force them to heed the Will of the People.

  31. Sinclair Davidson says:

    Abbott is in favour of getting rid of the states, according to IPA.

    No – not according to the IPA, according to his book Battlelines.

  32. Infidel Tiger says:

    Abbott is in favour of getting rid of the states, according to IPA.

    Which is why on September 15th we must all get to work in unseating him.

  33. Driftforge says:

    Actually that would make for an interesting poll – how many states should Australia have? 0? 6? 12? 20? More?

    I would suggest that any state where there are significant and abiding political differences based upon geography should be broken up into coherent units.

  34. . says:

    15-20 but places like Greater Sydney should be able to combine different levels into one.

    A remote area should be able to choose to be like an “imperial city” – having it’s own local government but subject to “federal state” law and contracting state services out to the feds.

    This would be far better than giving the Commonwealth the power to inflict patronage on us.

  35. perturbed says:

    Which is why on September 15th we must all get to work in unseating him.

    IT, don’t be so fucking stupid, and for God’s sake stop white-anting Abbott. THERE IS NO OTHER ACCEPTABLE ALTERNATIVE. Get that into your head right now, and realise that the best is the enemy of good enough. This way, the population gets to vote on the issue. The other way, it doesn’t and Gillard gets another wedge to use against Abbott in the dying days and try to make him look unreasonable.

    If it all goes to shit in the long term, the Libs will backflip and find a way to undo it.

  36. Driftforge says:

    15-20 but places like Greater Sydney should be able to combine different levels into one.

    Not sure what you mean by this, but I would expect that one of the best changes that could be made would be to excise out each of the ‘greater cities’ into its own city-state, giving ‘country’ and ‘city’ areas the capacity to enact their own laws to suit the distinct differences of the areas.

  37. Dantanica says:

    NO! to all referenda is my policy. Parliaments have more power than they need anyway.
    Let them kick their own goals.

  38. Cold-Hands says:

    Abbott is in favour of getting rid of the states, according to IPA.

    No – not according to the IPA, according to his book Battlelines.

    In his tribute to Christopher Pearson, Mr Abbott admitted to having second thoughts on that:

    Christopher also edited my most recent book, Battlelines. He didn’t agree with one of Battlelines’ key proposals, that the Constitution be amended to give the commonwealth parliament, where it chose to exercise it, general authority over the states. Nearly six years after the demise of the Howard government, whose squabbles with the states prompted that suggestion, Christopher’s reservations make more sense.

    The latest printingn of “Battlelines” makes this explicit. From Christopher Pearson’s review of the revised edition:

    In the process there have been important revisions and some finetuning. An early proposal to hold a referendum to give the commonwealth more power over the states was, as Abbott concedes, mostly “the product of Howard-era frustrations with hostile state governments” and “the past five years have been a good antidote to the view that political wisdom mostly resides in Canberra”.

  39. . says:

    Correct drifty.

    Look at the sheer stupidity of NSW environmental law.

    There is a figheries regulation that endangered native species [e.g., Silver Perch] (which command decent market prices…) cannot be farmed in a dam in the 1 in 100 year flood zone.

    Good work, Macquarie Street!

Comments are closed.