Idle Libs put heat on La­bor vot­ers

Fraser Coast Chronicle - - NATION -

VOT­ERS should be con­sid­er­ing La­bor’s part in the cit­i­zen­ship fi­asco as they go to the bal­lot box in by-elec­tions, Trea­surer Scott Morrison says.

But he con­firmed the Lib­er­als would not run a can­di­date in Perth, which La­bor holds with just a 2.2 per cent mar­gin, or in the safe La­bor seat of Fre­man­tle. In­stead, the Trea­surer says, the Govern­ment is fo­cused on the Queens­land elec­torate of Longman and the Tas­ma­nian elec­torate of Braddon, as well as a state by-elec­tion in WA.

“I would ask vot­ers, in par­tic­u­lar in Longman and Braddon, where the La­bor Party have the stand­ing mem­bers, to think about (the cit­i­zen­ship drama),” Mr Morrison said yes­ter­day. “They can’t be trusted on this stuff.”

The by-elec­tions were sparked when the High Court ruled Se­na­tor Katy Gal­lagher was a British ci­ti­zen when she was elected, forc­ing other MPs in the Lower House to re­sign.

Mr Morrison said the Lib­er­als weren’t run­ning in Perth or Fre­man­tle be­cause they were long-time La­bor seats.

But the Lib­er­als are run­ning Ge­orgina Downer in the South Aus­tralian seat of Mayo, where the Greens have an­nounced Ma­jor “Mo­ogy” Sum­ner will be their can­di­date against in­cum­bent Re­bekha Sharkie.

La­bor MP Emma Husar has also had to deny she’s en­ti­tled to Pol­ish cit­i­zen­ship af­ter com­ing un­der at­tack for not pro­vid­ing doc­u­mented proof.

Ms Husar says she wrote to the Pol­ish con­sulate to re­nounce any en­ti­tle­ment through her Poland-born pa­ter­nal grand­par­ents 16 days be­fore her nom­i­na­tion for Fed­eral Par­lia­ment in 2016.

At­tor­ney-Gen­eral Chris­tian Porter says Ms Husar had not put on the cit­i­zen­ship reg­is­ter any doc­u­mented ev­i­dence her re­nounce­ment was ac­cepted.

Ms Husar said she had noth­ing more to add. “You have to have some­thing to re­nounce. You have to have some­thing in or­der to give it back. I am not a dual ci­ti­zen,” she said.

Un­der new rules set to be in­tro­duced be­fore the by-elec­tions, can­di­dates have to give their cit­i­zen­ship in­for­ma­tion to the Aus­tralian Elec­toral Com­mis­sion.

It will then be made pub­lic, but the AEC won’t be given the power to ad­ju­di­cate the el­i­gi­bil­ity of can­di­dates.

A cross-party com­mit­tee of MPs has called for a ref­er­en­dum to end the ban on dual ci­ti­zens en­ter­ing Par­lia­ment, but Prime Min­is­ter Mal­colm Turn­bull says there is no time be­fore the next gen­eral elec­tion.


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