Labor MPs must Follow the Leader on Citizenship Proof

September 05, 2017

Senator Cory Bernardi has called upon 11 Labor federal senators and members of parliament to show proof of their citizenship, as their leader Bill Shorten did yesterday.

Senator Bernardi told the ABC "Labor have this great tradition of 'just accept what I say' irrespective of the evidence against them", noting previously that the weight of media critique of MPs' eligibility was against the conservative side of politics.

The Sydney Morning Herald wrote that Senator Bernardi believed that, for Mr Robert, "the honourable thing to do would be to leave the Parliament. He's not in breach of the constitution now because he's been elected since then, but the principle of it - how could that be allowed to happen? Why has it been allowed to happen and why are people saying 'oh well, that's in the past. Let it go'?,"

Ever since the constitutional crisis over citizenship and other eligibility grounds under section 44 of the Constitution emerged, Australian Conservatives have called for:

  • an audit of all members and senators' citizenship eligibility; 
  • the suspension ('proroguing') of parliament until the High Court ruled on eligibility cases; and
  • questions to be answered as to why the taxpayer should foot members' and senators' legal bills for High Court challenges over eligibility cases arising from their lack of due diligence when running for parliament.

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