Bernardi: Transparency reforms farcical

February 26, 2018

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has come under increasing pressure from Australian Conservatives leader and South Australian Senator Cory Bernardi and crossbench MPs to use his numbers in the House of Representatives to refer Labor MP Susan Lamb to the High Court over citizenship concerns.

The Australian reports One Nation leader Pauline Hanson and Victorian senator Derryn Hinch have called on the government to follow through with its threat to refer the member for Longman if Labor refuses to do so.

Senator Bernardi, said the “transparency” reforms,  forcing MPs to show proof they were not dual citizens, had proven “farcical” because potentially ineligible MPs had not been referred to the High Court.

Tasmanian independent MP Andrew Wilkie said he would consider supporting the government in referring Ms Lamb to break the “impasse” over the citizenship imbroglio, arguing the issue should be “fast-tracked”.

Mr Wilkie, who was previously against the government using its numbers in the lower house to refer Ms Lamb, said he was now “open” to supporting her referral, although he maintained his preference was for the joint referral of all MPs under question.

Other lower house crossbenchers Rebekha Sharkie, Cathy McGowan and Adam Bandt remain opposed to a “partisan referral”, remaining committed to Labor’s proposal to refer nine questionable MPs on all sides of the house.

 

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