Remember way back on November 3rd when Labor were responsible for an un-Australian witch hunt. I know this because Malcolm’s Merry Men kept insisting that it was.
No need to look into things; nothing to see here, but a week’s a long time in politics, because suddenly it’s no longer a witch hunt to suggest referring MPs to the High Court. No, no, indeedy! Labor MPs should resign immediately Because they were lawbreakers. In fact, by even suggesting that Labor MPs who – in spite of applying to Britain to have their citizenship rights revoked – didn’t have this confirmed by the Brits till after the close of nominations, we’re entitled to sit Parliament, Bill Shorten was running a “protection racket”,
However, speaking of rackets, one has to wonder whether the government has a plan up their sleeve for that ex-tennis player – who must have never travelled on a British passport – or whether they’re simply incapable of putting two and two together. Actually, that’s asking a lot for this government. Change that to “capable of putting one and one together”. As I pointed out the other day, Labor MPs who tried to reject their British citizenship didn’t get confirmation for nearly two months. Nominations for the Bennelong by-election – John Alexander’s seat – close on November 23rd. Is the government planning to ask Britain to expedite the process? It’s not a good look to argue these people shouldn’t be in Parliament because they didn’t get their forms back, but John Alexander should because we helped him and we can do that because we’re the government and we’re the adults, so there.
Now let’s look at what may happen from here:
- By-election doesn’t return Alexander. Turnbull government is now a minority government.
- By-election returns Alexander who hadn’t received confirmation from Britain by the close of nominations. Liberals have referred Labor MPs in the same boat to the High Court. If the High Court finds them ineligible then John Alexander will also be ineligible and the poor people of Bennelong will have to face another by-election. If the High Court rules in their favour, then the government looks petty and nasty for referring them.
- By-election returns Alexander who has received confirmation much faster than everyone else at which point questions are asked. The Liberals admit they intervened to speed it up, leading to accusations of them believing it’s one rule for them and another for everyone else, or else they deny it and nobody believes them.
- Turnbull hears that there are moves afoot to replace him as leader so he goes to the Governor-General and says let’s just clear the air here by having a general election and John Alexander doesn’t even have to face a by-election. The good people of New England, however, must be called upon to re-elect Barnaby Joyce for the third time in two years. Turnbull does this because he believes that he’s a great campaigner and much more impressive than Bill Shorten and when he wins the election that’ll put all those disloyal bastards in their place. He also knows that – in the unlikely event that a sycophant like Bill Shorten is elected by a populace swayed by Labor lies – at least he’s stopped all those bastards who undermined him from taking over his rightful role as Prime Minister.
And, lest we forget…
Whoops, sorry about that. I don’t want to be run out of the country like Yassmin. Using the phrase, “lest we forget” in any other context apart from talking about all those diggers who went and fought the Turks to preserve our freedom of speech is unforgivable.
Let’s not forget, the new problem for Turnbull will be a “Yes” in the marriage equality survey. Of course, a “Yes” result isn’t guaranteed. Some of the “No” campaigners are still expecting a surprise result in the form of a bolt of lightning, a plague of toads or Jesus appearing and turning the votes from “Yes” into “No” before doing an encore and turning water rights into bottles of Grange.
So, assuming that it’s a “Yes” vote, we now have to consider what we’ll do about protecting not just the rights of religious people to refuse rites, but also the right to refuse service to people on the grounds that they don’t like what they’re doing. But only in relation to marriage. You won’t, for example, be able to ask a man buying flowers, “Are these for your wife or girlfriend, because if they’re for a bloke, you can piss right off?” This would be far too restrictive because sometimes women buy flowers for other women even if they’re not planning any sort of hanky-panky, and can you imagine if you have to insist that the Danish pastry you’re buying is definitely for yourself and not some lover of the same sex? Before you know it, shops all over Australia would have forms to fill out where people are declaring the intended destination of the goods and services they’re purchasing, just so religious people would be able to boycott shops that sold to anyone that didn’t meet their standards.
Now, I know some of you are thinking that all this talk of religious freedom is just a delaying tactic, but just let me point out that it was only back in 2015 that the idea of referendum was first proposed and we’ve had a change of Prime Minister since then, so there hasn’t really been time to work out the details of what we’d do if there actually was a “yes” result in the vote. I mean, it was only two years ago. That’s hardly enough time to think about all the people who may be affected.
I guess the fairest thing to do would be to simply press ahead and introduce the legislation allowing marriage equality and we could have a referendum or survey about what rights to discriminate will Australians allow. I guess some would wonder: “Why should religious people have to wait till someone else decides, when they need to discriminate now?”, but I say that they should just be patient because, with a big change like this, we really need to get it right!