Senate debates

Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Parliamentary Representation

Rotation of Senators

9:49 am

Photo of Nick XenophonNick Xenophon (SA, Independent) Share this | Hansard source

I want to indicate my support for the position set out by Senator Hinch. I will say that in terms of NXT we are not affected either way by this, but there is an important principle in respect of this—that is, we legislated to have a process in place. Of course, the Senate can override it, as is the Senate's right. But I think the litmus test, if you like, the pub test in terms of what is fair, is how would this have played out if it was as though it was a half-Senate election. I think that, clearly, in this case, Senator Hinch would have been elected for a six-year term. We did go through a legislative process many years ago that anticipated this. It can be overridden by the Senate, but I think that this is fundamentally unfair and that is why I support the position of Senator Hinch and other crossbenchers in relation to this. We had a legislative reform. That legislative reform ought to be respected, even though it can be overridden by the Senate.


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