Jac­qui Lam­bie to quit Se­nate ow­ing to dual cit­i­zen­ship

The Guardian Australia - - News - Katharine Mur­phy Po­lit­i­cal ed­i­tor

The Tas­ma­nian in­de­pen­dent senator Jac­qui Lam­bie has con­firmed she will re­sign from par­lia­ment be­cause she is a dual cit­i­zen but she has vowed to press on with her po­lit­i­cal ca­reer.

An emo­tional Lam­bie told a Launceston ra­dio sta­tion on Tues­day she would be­come the eighth MP to be felled by the cit­i­zen­ship fi­asco, but she de­clared: “You can’t keep a bloody Lam­bie down.”

The Tas­ma­nian floated run­ning in the lower-house seat of Brad­don in the event the La­bor in­cum­bent, Jus­tine Keay, was forced to re­sign be­cause of a dual cit­i­zen­ship.

She said her cur­rent Se­nate po­si­tion should go to the next per­son on the Jac­qui Lam­bie Net­work Se­nate ticket, Steve Martin, and she would not ask him to make way for her re­turn. “I would never do that.”

Lam­bie’s de­par­ture fol­lows the res­ig­na­tions of five fel­low sen­a­tors; the Greens Scott Lud­lam and Larissa Wa­ters; the deputy leader of the Na­tional party, Fiona Nash; One Na­tion’s Mal­colm Roberts; and the Se­nate pres­i­dent, the Lib­eral Stephen Parry. All have fallen foul of the con­sti­tu­tional re­quire­ments under sec­tion 44.

The Lib­eral lower-house MP John Alexan­der re­signed at the week­end, trig­ger­ing a by­elec­tion in the Syd­ney seat of Ben­ne­long. The Na­tional Barn­aby Joyce is run­ning in his seat of New Eng­land af­ter be­ing ruled in­el­i­gi­ble by the high court.

Lam­bie’s res­ig­na­tion was ex­pected, given that she had told a num­ber of Se­nate col­leagues over the course of a chaotic po­lit­i­cal day on Mon­day that she was in trou­ble be­cause of her fa­ther’s Scot­tish her­itage.

She is now the sec­ond Tas­ma­nian senator to force a re­count and re­place­ment process, af­ter the de­par­ture of Parry.

When it was just Parry’s de­par­ture trig­ger­ing a re­count, it was pos­si­ble that pro­ce­dure could have dis­placed the Tas­ma­nian Green Nick McKim, pos­si­bly in favour of a One Na­tion can­di­date.

While some po­lit­i­cal in­sid­ers re­main un­sure how the re­place­ment pro­cesses in Tas­ma­nia will ul­ti­mately play out, the ABC’s elec­tion ex­pert Antony Green, told Guardian Aus­tralia on Tues­day if both Parry and Lam­bie were knocked out “there is no ques­tion over Nick McKim’s po­si­tion”.

Lam­bie’s de­par­ture comes af­ter the Se­nate on Mon­day night ap­proved the new dis­clo­sure sys­tem, de­signed to pre­vent a re­peat of the cit­i­zen­ship fi­asco.

The agreed draft res­o­lu­tion will re­quire MPs to pro­vide in­for­ma­tion in­clud­ing their birth de­tails, the place and date of birth of par­ents and grand­par­ents, and what steps they have taken to avoid ac­quir­ing cit­i­zen­ship by de­scent.

The res­o­lu­tion re­quires MPs with dual cit­i­zen­ships to pro­vide de­tails and ev­i­dence of the date and man­ner of re­nun­ci­a­tion. If the re­quired re­nun­ci­a­tion did not oc­cur be­fore they nom­i­nated, then ev­i­dence is to be pro­vided of the steps taken to re­nounce the dual cit­i­zen­ship.

With sev­eral MPs still under a cloud, the agreed process is likely to trig­ger yet more re­fer­rals to the high court and po­ten­tially by­elec­tions be­yond the two under way in New Eng­land and Ben­ne­long.

The reg­is­ter was ap­proved on the voices af­ter amend­ments moved by the Greens and the cross­bench were re­jected.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.