The 30th anniversary of Australia’s Parliament House

Dr Joy McCann, Anna Hough
Politics and Public Administration Section

with Dr Dianne Heriot, Parliamentary Librarian



Australian Parliament House during the Enlighten Festival

The third decade, 2008‒18

2008 | 2009201020112012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018

 

2008

Landscape trial

 

 

In January 2008 the Department of Parliamentary Services commences a landscape trial using different varieties of couch grass on the extensive lawns of Parliament House.

The trial forms part of the environmental management activities at Parliament House which aim to reduce energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, water use and waste generation. [1]

 

2008

42nd Parliament opened

 

 

On 12 February 2008 the Governor-General, Major-General Michael Jeffery, opens the 42nd Parliament following the federal election held on 24 November 2007 in which the ALP, led by the Hon. Kevin Rudd (ALP, Member for Griffith, Qld, 1998‒), wins government and the Hon. Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒) becomes Australia's first female deputy Prime Minister.

Read: Governor-General’s speech at opening of 42nd Parliament

2008

First welcome to country ceremony

 

 

At the opening of the 42nd Parliament on 12 February 2008, Aboriginal people in traditional dress greet members of Parliament in the first 'welcome to country' ceremony of Indigenous music and dance to be held in the building. [2]

Ngambri elder Matilda House-Williams presents Prime Minister the Hon. Kevin Rudd (ALP, Member for Griffith, Qld, 1998‒), with a message stick. In her speech, she says:

A 'Welcome to Country' acknowledges our people and pays respect to our ancestors, the spirits who created the lands…. With this welcome comes a great symbolism. The hope of a united nation, through reconciliation we can join together the people of the oldest living culture in the world and with others who have come from all over the globe, and who continue to come. And together forging a united Australia so committed to succeeding that we will not be denied. Prime Minister, my grandchildren have handed you a gift, a message stick, a tangible symbol of today's ceremony. The message stick, it's a means of communication used by our peoples for thousands of years. They tell the story of our coming together. With this renewed hope and our pride, our strength is refreshed. Like our ancestors, we can reach new heights soaring on the wings of the eagles. Thank you very much, and welcome to the land of my ancestors. [3]

The ceremony becomes a standard feature of future openings of parliament.

WatchWelcome to country ceremony

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2008

Change of Speaker

 

 

On 12 February 2008 Harry Jenkins (ALP, Member for Scullin, Vic., 1986‒) is elected as Speaker of the House of Representatives, succeeding the Hon. David Hawker.

Notably, Mr Jenkins’ father, Dr Henry Jenkins, was also Speaker of the House of Representatives (from 1983 to 1986). Upon being elected to the Speakership Mr Jenkins acknowledges following his father in the role.

Mr Harry Jenkins, Speaker of the House of Representatives, 2010 by Rick Amor (1948)

Mr Harry Jenkins, Speaker of the House of Representatives, 2010 by Rick Amor (1948)

Image courtesy of Historic Memorials Collection, Parliament House Art Collection, Canberra ACT

2008

Nursing mothers proxy vote

 

 

On 12 February 2008, the House of Representatives passes a resolution allowing members who are nursing mothers to vote by proxy 'for any division except that on the third reading of a bill which proposes an alteration of the Constitution'.

In doing so the House recognises that Members required to nurse infants may not always be able to attend in the Chamber to vote in divisions. The provision is first used on 20 October 2008 by Sophie Mirabella (LP, Member for Indi, Vic., 2001‒). [4]

 

2008

Apology to Stolen Generations

 

 

On 13 February 2008 the Prime Minister the Hon. Kevin Rudd (ALP, Member for Griffith, Qld, 1998‒) presents an apology to Indigenous Australians as a motion to be voted on by the House of Representatives. The motion offers an apology to Australia's Indigenous peoples, and especially to members of the 'Stolen Generations'.

The Prime Minister follows the apology with a 20-minute speech which is witnessed in the gallery of the House by invited members of the Stolen Generation, and televised to large gatherings of people in venues around Australia including a large crowd outside Parliament House:

We apologise for the laws and policies of successive parliaments and governments that have inflicted profound grief, suffering and loss on these our fellow Australians. We apologise especially for the removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families, their communities and their country... [5]

The Hon. Dr Brendan Nelson (LP, Member for Bradfield, NSW, 1996‒2009), Leader of the Opposition, speaks in support of this motion. An identical motion is heard by the Senate and is passed unanimously. Following the Apology Lorraine Peeters, a member of the Stolen Generations, presents the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition with a glass coolamon made by Bai Bai Napangardi, a Balgo artist. The coolamon contains the message: 'On behalf of our people, thank you for saying sorry'. Tom Calma, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner, gives a speech in the Members' Hall after being asked by the Stolen Generations Alliance and the National Sorry Day Committee to respond to the Apology. [6]

The Apology Manuscript, 2008 by Gemma Black (1956-)

The Apology Manuscript, 2008 by Gemma Black (1956-)

Image courtesy of Parliament House Gift Collection, Canberra ACT

Watch: Apology to Stolen Generations

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2008

World Youth Day invitation

 

 

The Archbishop of Sydney, Cardinal George Pell and the Archbishop of Canberra and Bishop Anthony Fisher join Catholic schoolchildren from across Canberra and the wider region in welcoming a 3.8 metre cross and an icon into the Great Hall of Parliament House on World Youth Day celebrated on 18 February 2008.

The objects come from Ground Zero in New York City, East Timor, and a genocide memorial in Rwanda. They are gifts from Pope John Paul II to the young people of the world, and, accompanied by an indigenous Australian message stick, represent an invitation to young people from Pope Benedict XVI, to attend World Youth Day in Sydney in July 2008. [7]

 

2008

2020 Summit

 

 

Parliament House is the venue for a two-day Australia 2020 Summit on 19 and 20 April 2008.

Organised by the Rudd Government, the Summit is designed to develop long-term options for the nation across 10 critical areas. It involves 1000 Australians who are leaders in their fields. [8]

 

2008

20th anniversary

 

 

A ceremony to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the opening of Parliament House is held on 9 May 2008.

The ceremony is themed to 'commemorate the contribution of those who were involved in the design and construction of the building'. About 1000 workers take part in a special ceremony in the Great Hall. [9]

WatchNew Parliament House turns 20

Video courtesy of Pride of Place , House of Representatives, Parliament House

2008

Bark petition presented

 

 

In July 2008, following the apology to the stolen generations by the Prime Minister the Hon. Kevin Rudd (ALP, Member for Griffith, Qld, 1998‒), Galarrwuy Yunupingu presents the Prime Minister with a bark petition requesting ‘full recognition of Indigenous rights in the Australian Constitution’. Yunupingu later writes:

The invitation will be to join with him [Kevin Rudd] to hang the 2008 Yirrkala Petition on the wall of Parliament House, side by side with the 1988 Barunga Statement and the 1963 Bark Petition. [10]

Read: Yirrkala Petition presented to Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in 2008

2008

Youngest woman parliamentarian

 

 

Senator Sarah Hanson-Young (Greens, Senator for South Australia, 2007‒) takes her place in the Senate at the age of 25 on 1 July 2008 and gives her First Speech on 1 September 2008. She is the youngest woman to enter the Commonwealth Parliament.

Former Senator Natasha Stott Despoja was previously the youngest woman, following her commencement in the Senate in 1995 at the age of 26.

Senator Sarah Hanson-Young

Senator Sarah Hanson-Young

Image courtesy of Parliamentary Handbook

2008

Change of President

 

 

On 26 August 2008 Senator the Hon. John Hogg (ALP, Senator for Queensland, 1996‒) is elected as President of the Senate, succeeding the Hon. Alan Ferguson.

Senator the Hon. John Hogg

Senator the Hon. John Hogg

Image courtesy of Parliamentary Handbook

2008

First woman Governor-General

 

 

On 5 September 2008 at Parliament House, Ms Quentin Bryce AC is sworn-in as the twenty-fifth Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia by swearing the Oath of Allegiance to Her Majesty the Queen, Her Heirs and successors according to law. She is the first woman to hold that position.

WatchSwearing in of Governor-General, Quentin Bryce AC

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2008

Protesters removed from House of Representatives

 

 

Several protesters are removed from the House of Representatives on 1 December 2008. An Azerbaijani man jumps from the public gallery onto the floor of the chamber, while another visitor calls out 'There is no humanity here!'

The man who jumped later said he wanted to draw attention to the plight of his family, who had been in Australia for 11 years without being able to secure permanent residence status. They were unable to be deported to their country of origin, which no longer existed. [11] This is one of several incidents in this period. In late September a climate change protester is removed from the public gallery of the Senate after jumping into a prohibited area and, in late October, security guards wrestle a man who threatens to jump from the public gallery in the House of Representatives.

 

2008 ‘Cash for photograph’ scandal  
  James Bidgood (ALP, Member for Dawson, Qld, 2007‒10) allegedly attempts to sell photographs taken of a protester who threatens to set himself alight outside Parliament House. The protester had earlier disrupted Question Time by jumping onto the floor of the House of Representatives from the public gallery. The Speaker of the House of Representatives refers the incident to the Committee of Privileges and Members' Interests, which is proposing to review the question of introducing a code of conduct for members. The Speaker of the House of Representatives refers the incident to the Committee of Privileges and Members' Interests ‘as an example of an incident of concern’, noting that the Committee has proposed to review the question of introducing a code of conduct for members.[12]  

2009

Economic stimulus package

 

 

The Rudd Government's $42 million economic stimulus package is passed by the Senate at the second attempt on 13 February 2009 as a key component of the Government's response to the global financial crisis.

The package is passed with the support of the five Greens Senators, Family First Senator Steve Fielding (Senator for Victoria, 2005‒11), and Independent Senator Nick Xenophon (Senator for South Australia, 2008‒) whose support is finally secured in a deal to bring forward money earmarked for future years for the Murray‒Darling Basin and other water projects. [13]

 

2009

Senate committee changes reversed

 

 

On 13 May 2009 the changes to the Senate standing committee structure agreed to in 2006 are reversed, restoring the post-1994 structure involving pairs of committees in each subject area. [14]

 

2009

Childcare centre opens

 

 

After nearly three decades of surveys, reviews, committee reports and cross-party calls for the implementation of family-friendly facilities, an on-site childcare centre opens in Parliament House for the care of children of members, senators, their staff and staff of the parliamentary departments. The centre is built in the former non-members' bar at a cost of about $380 000.

In seeking approval for the facility, Leader of the House the Hon. Anthony Albanese (ALP, Member for Grayndler, NSW, 1996‒) states:

The fact we have many facilities in this parliament-a snooker room, a pool, a gym, a dining room and many other facilities here that are appropriate in this magnificent building-but no childcare centre reflects the parliament of the last century. It is appropriate that the parliament of this century reflect more adequately values such as ensuring that all parents, whether they be men or women, have access to child care. [15]

 

2009 Memorial Service for Craig Senger
 

On 31 July 2009 a memorial service is held in the Great Hall for Craig Senger, the first Australian diplomat to be killed in a terrorist attack. He was one of three Australians who died as a result of terrorist bombings at the JW Marriott and the Ritz-Carlton hotels in Jakarta on 17 July.

 

2009

Apology to Forgotten Australians

 

 

In a moving ceremony held in the Great Hall at Parliament House on 16 November 2009, the Prime Minister the Hon. Kevin Rudd (ALP, Member for Griffith, Qld, 1998‒) and Leader of the Opposition the Hon. Malcolm Turnbull (LP, Member for Wentworth, NSW, 2004‒) apologise on behalf of the nation to more than 500 000 'Forgotten Australians' and former child migrants, many of whom suffered abuse and neglect while in out-of-home care during the last century. In part the Prime Minister says:

And we come together today to offer our nation's apology. To say to you, the Forgotten Australians, and those who were sent to our shores as children without your consent, that we are sorry. Sorry - that as children you were taken from your families and placed in institutions where so often you were abused. Sorry - for the physical suffering, the emotional starvation and the cold absence of love, of tenderness, of care. Sorry - for the tragedy, the absolute tragedy, of childhoods lost - childhoods spent instead in austere and authoritarian places, where names were replaced by numbers, spontaneous play by regimented routine, the joy of learning by the repetitive drudgery of menial work. Sorry - for all these injustices to you, as children, who were placed in our care.

The text of the apology is tabled in the House of Representatives and in the Senate, and is accompanied by a number of moving constituency statements. The Parliamentary Library publishes a Background Note providing a brief overview and history of child migrants and children in institutional care in Australia. [16]

Watch: Apology to Forgotten Australians

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2009

Retirement of the Clerk of the House of Representatives

 
 

Mr Ian Harris AO, Clerk of the House of Representatives since July 1997, retires on 4 December 2009. The new Clerk is Mr Bernard Wright, who commences in the role on 5 December 2009.

 

2009

Retirement of the Clerk of the Senate

 
 

Mr Harry Evans, Clerk of the Senate since 1988, retires in December 2009. Mr Evans is the longest serving Clerk of the Australian Senate. The new Clerk of the Senate is Dr Rosemary Laing, who commences in the role on 5 December 2009.

 

2010

Address by Indonesian Prime Minister

 

 

On 10 March 2010 His Excellency, Dr Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono , President of the Republic of Indonesia, addresses the Parliament. In accordance with a procedure agreed to in 2003, the address is presented in the House and Senators attend as guests of the House. [17]

Watch: Address by the President of the Republic of Indonesia

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2010

Welcome to country introduced

 

 

On 23 June 2010, both Houses amend their standing orders to make an Indigenous Welcome to Country Ceremony a permanent feature of the opening of Parliament.[18]

 

2010

First woman Prime Minister

 

 

On 24 June 2010 the Hon. Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒) becomes the 27th Prime Minister of Australia, and the first woman to hold that position having previously served as Australia's first female Deputy Prime Minister. [19]As a Welsh-born migrant, she is also the first Australian Prime Minister to be born overseas since the Rt Hon. WM (Billy) Hughes.

Watch : The Hon. Julia Gillard sworn in as Australia's 27th Prime Minister

Source: Ten News

2010

Opening of 43rd Parliament

 

 

Australia’s first female Governor-General, Ms Quentin Bryce AC, opens the 43rd Parliament on 28 September 2010, following the Commonwealth election held on 21 August 2010. [20]

In the closest election result since 1961, and the first hung Commonwealth Parliament since 1941, no one party wins the majority of seats in the House of Representatives election held on 21 August 2010. After the election, the Australian Labor Party negotiates agreement with three Independents and the Australian Greens giving it the necessary support to form a minority Government. [21] The hung parliament, and the resulting Agreement for a better Parliament: Parliamentary Reform, have a major impact on the work and practices of the 43rd Parliament including the introduction of time limits on questions and answers, extra sitting hours, and greatly increased opportunities for private Members including a significant increase in the number of private members’ bills —more than in any year since Federation in 1901. [22]

The Governor-General delivers her opening of Parliament address

The Governor-General delivers her opening of Parliament address

Image courtesy of AUSPIC 

Watch: Opening of the 43rd Parliament of Australia, 28 September 2010, Part 1 and Part 2

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2010

Changes to procedures in House of Representatives

 

 

On 29 September 2010, as a result of the federal election held on 21 August 2010 and the Agreement for a better Parliament: Parliamentary Reform, the House of Representatives agrees to a large number of amendments to standing orders.

An important aspect of the Agreement is the requirement for monitoring and reporting of the procedural changes implemented in the House of Representatives in the 43rd Parliament, and the first report is presented by the House Standing Committee on Procedure on 13 May 2011. [23]

 

2010

Lines that Speak exhibition

 

 

To commemorate Romaldo Giurgola's 90th birthday on 2 September 2010, Parliament House launches an exhibition calledLines that speak: architectural drawings of Romaldo Giurgola (3 September‒31 October 2010). [24]

The exhibition is curated by is former Mitchell/Giurgola and Thorp colleague Pamille Berg, and presents Giurgola's mostly pencil renderings of elevations, plans and perspectives including Parliament House.

 

2010

Indigenous custodians acknowledged

 

 

Amongst the significant procedural changes agreed to by the House of Representatives on 29 September 2010 is the introduction of an acknowledgement of Indigenous custodians of country, to be read by the Speaker at the start of each sitting day before the usual prayers.[25] The Senate agrees to incorporate an acknowledgement of country after prayers when it amends standing order 50 on 26 October 2010. [26]

The wording for both Houses is:

I acknowledge the Ngunnawal and Ngambri peoples who are the traditional custodians of the Canberra area and pay respect to the elders, past and present, of all Australia's Indigenous peoples. [27]

 

2010

First Indigenous Member

 

 

The first Indigenous member of the House of Representatives Ken Wyatt (LP, Member for Hasluck, WA 2010‒), gives his First Speech to the House on 29 September 2010, following his election at the Commonwealth elections held on 21 August 2010. [28]

He represents the electoral division of Hasluck in Western Australia for the Liberal Party of Australia. He is a Noongar, Yamatji and Wangai man of Indian, English and Irish descent. The contest for the seat of Hasluck is unusual in that three of the seven candidates are Indigenous Australians. His speech is witnessed by Aboriginal elders who watch from the gallery as he describes his personal journey to becoming a member of parliament. He wears a kangaroo skin cloak called a bookha, the traditional cloak of the Nyungar people of Western Australia presented to him by tribal Elders. He also wears it at the opening of the 43rd Parliament on the previous day.

WatchKen Wyatt MP give his First Speech to the House

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

Ken Wyatt, delivers his First Speech to the House of Representatives.

The first Indigenous member of the House of Representatives, Ken Wyatt, delivers his First Speech to the House of Representatives.

Image courtesy of AAP

2010

Youngest Member

 

 

At 20 years old Wyatt Roy (LP, Member for Longman, Qld, 2010‒) is the youngest person to be elected to the House of Representatives. He gives his First Speech to Parliament on 26 October 2010. [29]

Wyatt Roy MP

Wyatt Roy MP

Image courtesy of Parliamentary Handbook

Watch: Wyatt Roy's First Speech to Parliament

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2010

Senate committee system celebrated

 

 

A conference to mark the 40th anniversary of the Senate committee system is held in November 2010. The proceedings are published in the Senate's journal, Papers on Parliament, as were the proceedings of the 20th anniversary conference in 1990. [30]

 

2010

High-security briefing room

 

 

A high-security emergency response briefing room is built next to the Cabinet Room in Parliament House.

It is designed to be a central coordination point during times of national and international crisis, and is installed following a border security review conducted in 2008. [31]

 

2010

Policies governing protests and assemblies

 

 

The Secretary of the Department of Parliamentary Services issues the Parliament of Australia's Operating Policies and Procedures No 16 governing the conduct of protests and other assemblies in the Parliamentary precincts.

 

2011

Address by Mongolian Prime Minister Sukhbaatar Batbold

 

 

On 23 February 2011 the Prime Minister of Mongolia, Sukhbaatar Batbold, is welcomed to Parliament House by the Prime Minister the Hon. Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒) as part of his official visit to Australia.

He is the first Mongolian head of government to visit Australia since the two countries established diplomatic relations in 1972. The leaders witness the signature of four bilateral arrangements relating to vocational educational cooperation, agricultural development, fostering public access to information, and collaborative opportunities in scientific fields of common interest. [32]

Visit by His Excellency Mr Sukhbaatar Batbold MP, Prime Minister of Mongolia

Visit by His Excellency Mr Sukhbaatar Batbold MP, Prime Minister of Mongolia

Image courtesy of AUSPIC

2011

Parliament House lights up

 

 

Parliament House is illuminated during 'Enlighten' Canberra in March 2011, a new feature of the ACT Government's Canberra Festival. 'Enlighten' includes illuminated projections on several buildings in order to showcase Canberra's most famous tourist attractions.

Parliament House during the Enlighten festival, 2011

Parliament House during the Enlighten festival, 2011

Image courtesy of Howard Moffat/AUSPIC

2011 Removal of Executive veto over Australian Capital Territory and Northern Territory  
  Parliament passes a bill which removes the right of a federal minister or the Cabinet to veto or change territory laws. It is the first bill introduced by the Greens passed by the federal Parliament. The veto power was used in 2006 to disallow the ACT's civil union laws. The Territories Self-Government Legislation Amendment (Disallowance and Amendment of Laws) Act 2011 provides that territory laws can only be disallowed or changed through a vote of federal Parliament. Section 122 of The Australian Constitution gives federal Parliament the plenary power to 'make laws for the government of any territory'. This provision does not apply to the states
 

2011

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak

 

 

On 3 March 2011 the Prime Minister of Malaysia Najib Razak visits Parliament House, the third visit by a Malaysian Prime Minister in 30 years.[33]

Visit by the Right Honourable Dato Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia

Visit by the Right Honourable Dato Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia

Image courtesy of AUSPIC

2011 Confidence in the Speaker
 
 

On 31 May 2011, the Speaker of the House, Mr Harry Jenkins, names a member for continuing to interject after having been warned by the Chair. The subsequent motion that the member be suspended from the House is defeated.

In declaring the result of the division, the Speaker states his intention to consider his position.[34] House of Representatives Practice notes that the naming of a Member is, ‘in effect, an appeal to the House to support the Chair in maintaining order’. The Leader of the Opposition immediately moves a motion of confidence in the Speakership, which is seconded by the Prime Minister who also speaks on the motion (as does the member for Lyne). The motion is agreed to on the voices.

 

2011

Visit by Dalai Lama

 

 

The fourteenth Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, visits Parliament House on 14 June 2011 as a guest of the All Parliamentary Group for Tibet. It is his fourth visit to Parliament in five years, and his eighth visit to Australia. [35]

2011

Address by New Zealand Prime Minister

 

 

On 20 June 2011 the Prime Minister of New Zealand, the Rt Hon. John Key , becomes the first New Zealand head of state to address the Parliament. In accordance with a procedure agreed to in 2003, the address is presented in the House and Senators attend as guests of the House. [36]

Watch: Address by the Prime Minister of New Zealand

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2011

Solar panels fitted

 

 

In June 2011 a section of the roof of Parliament House is fitted with solar panels as part of a pilot project to assess how alternative technologies can be integrated into the building systems.

There are 42 panels or 7.8 kW on the roof of the Gardeners' Compound and 192 panels or 35.5 kW on the roof of the Senate wing. The project forms part of the environmental management activities at Parliament House which aim to reduce energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, water use and waste generation. [37]

Solar panels on Parliament House roof

Solar panels on Parliament House roof

Image courtesy of Parliament of Australia

2011

Indigenous banner tabled in the Senate

 

 

During a Senate debate on the National Radioactive Waste Management Bill 2010 on 14 June 2011, Senator Scott Ludlam (Greens, Senator for WA, 2008) is given leave to table a banner covered in handprints and containing exhortations in three different Indigenous languages saying 'No waste dump at Muckaty'.

Senator Ludlam stated that:

They asked me in Tennant Creek a month or so ago to bring a document into the chamber for tabling, and I checked with the clerks to make sure that it qualified as a document under standing orders.

He was given leave to have the document incorporated in Hansard, and an image is scanned and printed accordingly. The handprints represent all the family groups involved in the Muckaty Land Trust. [38]

Indigenous banner tabled in the Senate

Banner tabled in the Senate and incorporated into the Hansard, 14 June 2011

Image courtesy of Hansard Services Unit

2011

White powder security alert

 

 

Parliament House is locked down and 16 people isolated following the discovery of suspicious white powder in an envelope in an office within the ministerial wing on 10 August 2011. The incident is identified as a hoax. [39]

 

2011

'Convoy of no confidence'

 

 

A 'Convoy of No Confidence' rally, involving 11 truck convoys from around Australia, gathers outside Parliament House on 22 August 2011.

The rally is principally organised as a protest against the Gillard Government's proposal to introduce a carbon tax, although other grievances over Government policies are aired. The rally is addressed by several speakers including the Leader of the Opposition, the Hon. Tony Abbott (LP, Member for Warringah, NSW, 1994‒). [40]

 

2011

Tax summit

 

 

The Gillard Government holds a two-day tax forum for 200 participants at Parliament House on 4 and 5 October 2011.

 

2011

Carbon tax legislation

 

 

On 12 October 2011, the Gillard Government secures passage of its controversial carbon tax legislation through the House of Representatives with the support of key crossbench members. The Clean Energy Bill 2011 and 17 related bills pass the Senate on 8 November after an agreement between the ALP and the Australian Greens to truncate debate on the bills and bring the final vote forward.

 

2011

Royal visit

 

 

During her 16th visit to Australia, Her Majesty The Queen, together with His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, attends a reception held in the Great Hall at Parliament House on 21 October 2011.

Her Majesty is officially welcomed by the Prime Minister the Hon. Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒), and gives a speech to invited guests.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Image courtesy of Parliamentary Handbook

Watch: Royal visit by Her Majesty The Queen and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2011

Address by US President

 

 

The President of the United States, the Hon. Barack Obama , addresses the Parliament on 17 November 2011, focusing on the relationship between Australia and the United States. [41] In accordance with a procedure agreed to in 2003, the address is presented in the House and Senators attend as guests of the House. [42]

President Obama is the ninth foreign Head of State or dignitary to address the Australian Parliament since the move to the permanent building in 1988, and he is the fourth US President to do so. Prior to 1988, foreign dignitaries had addressed the Australian Parliament on only one occasion-a delegation from the House of Commons addressed the Parliament at the provisional Parliament House on 29 November 1951 and presented the Mace to commemorate the Australian Parliament's jubilee. [43] The event requires many weeks of preparation by staff of the Parliament's three departments.

WatchAddress by the President of the United States of America, the Hon. Barack Obama

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

Address by US President

US President Barack Obama addresses a joint session of the Australian Parliament in the House of Representatives at Parliament House, Canberra on November 17, 2011

Image courtesy of Creative Commons, Author: Pete Souza

2011

Speaker resigns

 

 

Harry Jenkins (ALP, Member for Scullin, Vic., 1986‒) unexpectedly resigns as Speaker on 24 November 2011, and leaves the Chair after inviting the Deputy Speaker, Mr Slipper, to take the Chair.

Later in the day, an election is held for a new Speaker. The Hon. Peter Slipper (Member for Fisher, Qld, 1984‒87 and 1993‒; NP, 1984‒87; LP, 1993‒2011; and Independent, 2011‒) is nominated, the nomination is seconded, and Mr Slipper accepts the nomination. Mr Slipper is elected unopposed. Ms Anna Burke MP is elected Deputy Speaker. Mr Slipper resigns from the LNP upon accepting the position as Speaker, and remains in the House of Representatives as an Independent Member. [44]

The Hon. Peter Slipper MP

The Hon. Peter Slipper MP

Image courtesy of Parliamentary Handbook

2011 New Human Rights Act
  The Human Rights (Parliamentary Scrutiny) Act 2011 passes the Parliament on 25 November 2011.  The Act requires Ministers introducing legislation to table a statement outlining how the Bill complies with the seven main United Nations human rights treaties to which Australia is a party, namely the:

The Act also establishes a Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights to examine Bills and existing Acts for their compatibility with human rights, and to inquire into any matter relating to human rights which is referred to it by the Attorney-General.

The Act fulfils certain commitments in the government’s Human Rights Framework which was announced in 2010 in response to the report of the National Human Rights Consultation Committee.
 

2012

Aboriginal protest

 

 

On 27 January 2012, protesters from the Aboriginal tent embassy burn the Australian flag on the front steps of Parliament House, amid tensions over the future of the embassy.

 

2012

Seven Historical Documents of Truth and Justice

 

 

In February 2012, the National Sorry Day Committee presents Seven Historical Documents of Truth and Justice to the Australian Parliament in a special ceremony marking the fourth anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations. The documents include:

  • Petition to King George VI & The Day of Mourning Resolution 1938
  • Barunga Statement 1988
  • Report of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody 1991
  • Bringing them home Report 1997
  • Australian Declaration Towards Reconciliation and Roadmaps 2000
  • United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples 2007, and
  • Australian Parliament's Apology to the Stolen Generations 2008.

The documents are presented in a traditional message stick carved by Wiradjuri artist Duncan Smith. The Parliamentary Library is the custodian of this gift, which is on display in the Ground Floor Reading Room.

 

2012

Speaker's procession introduced

 

 

The Speaker, the Hon. Peter Slipper (Member for Fisher, Qld, 1984‒87 and 1993‒; NP, 1984‒87; LP, 1993‒2011; and Independent, 2011‒), reintroduces a formal Speaker's procession to the Parliament on 14 February 2012, by walking through the Members' Hall before entering the Chamber.

The Speaker's procession was a tradition in the provisional (Old) Parliament House before the Parliament moved to its permanent home in 1988.

Watch: Speaker’s procession, 14 February 2012

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

 

2012

Federation Chamber

 

 

The Main Committee of the House of Representatives is renamed the Federation Chamber on 27 February 2012.

The House of Representatives Committee on Procedure originally recommends a name change in 2004 in order to avoid confusion with the main committee room in Parliament House. The government of the day notes the recommendations but does not support a name change. The matter is raised again in 2012 and a motion by the Hon. Anthony Albanese (ALP, Member for Grayndler, NSW, 1996‒) to amend the House Standing Orders is passed after debate. The decision to change the name is announced by the Speaker, the Hon. Peter Slipper (Member for Fisher, Qld, 1984‒87 and 1993‒; NP, 1984‒87; LP, 1993‒2011; and Independent, 2011‒), on 7 February 2012. The chamber's new name is chosen in accordance with the 2004 recommendation that it should reflect 'a significant aspect of Australian culture or parliamentary democracy'. [45] In 2011‒12, the Federation Chamber meets for more hours than in any previous year. [46]

Main Committee chamber, renamed Federation Chamber

Main Committee chamber, renamed Federation Chamber

Image courtesy of Parliament of Australia

2012

Visit by President of Lebanon

 
  On 16 April 2012 the President of Lebanon, His Excellency Michel Suleiman attended a luncheon at Parliament House during his State Visit to Australia.

Watch: Visit by President of Lebanon

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2012

Speaker steps aside

 

 

On 22 April 2012 the Hon. Peter Slipper (Member for Fisher, Qld, 1984‒87 and 1993‒; NP, 1984‒87; LP, 1993‒2011; and Independent, 2011‒) releases a statement indicating that he will stand aside as Speaker whilst investigations are underway into allegations of sexual harassment and allegations of fraudulent abuse of Cabcharge vouchers, and that the Deputy Speaker, Anna Burke (ALP, Member for Chisholm, Vic., 1998‒), will act as Speaker. [47]

On 29 April 2012 Mr Slipper issues a Statement by the Speaker saying that there is no longer any reason for him to step aside. On 8 May 2012 Mr Slipper makes a formal statement to the House in which he invites the Deputy Speaker to 'take the chair'.

2012

Visit by Prime Minister of Thailand

 
  On 28 May 2012 the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Thailand, Her Excellency Ms Yingluck Shinawatra, attended a luncheon at Parliament House during her State Visit to Australia.

Watch: Visit by the Prime Minister of Thailand

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House
2012

Mabo Native Title decision remembered

 
  On 31 May 2012, the House of Representatives marks the twentieth anniversary of the High Court’s Mabo native title decision.  

2012

Design principles clarified

 

 

In his submission to an inquiry by the Senate Standing Committee on Finance and Public Administration into the Department of Parliamentary Services, the architect Romaldo Giurgola clarifies the design principles that define the character and meaning of the building:

..first, the significance of the building as a democratic forum for the nation of Australia; second, making the process of government visible and accessible to the public; third, the building design as a symbolic sequence of spaces with reference to Australia's historical and cultural evolution over time; and, finally, the design of Parliament House as a workplace which was intended to enhance the health and wellbeing of all occupants, which I think is important because it becomes a model for everyone to look to. [48]

 

2012

Visit by Prime Minister of Zimbabwe

 
  On 23 July 2012 the Prime Minister of the Republic of Zimbabwe, the Hon. Morgan Txvangirai, attended a luncheon at Parliament House during his State Visit to Australia.

Watch: Visit by Prime Minister of Zimbabwe

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2012

Parliamentary Budget Office established

 

 

The inaugural Parliamentary Budget Officer Mr Phil Bowen takes up his appointment on 23 July 2012 as head of the fourth Parliamentary Department-the Parliamentary Budget Office. The role of the new department is to inform the Parliament by providing independent and non-partisan analysis of the budget, fiscal policy and the financial implications of proposals.

The new department is established under the Parliamentary Service Act 1999 and fulfils a requirement of the Agreement for a better Parliament: Parliamentary Reform negotiated between the Coalition, the ALP and the independents following the 2010 Commonwealth election. [49]

 

2012

New website

 

 

The Parliament of Australia launches a new website following a redevelopment project conducted by the parliamentary departments.

New Parliament of Australia website

New Parliament of Australia website

Image courtesy of Parliament of Australia

2012

Heritage Advisory Board

 

 

A Heritage Advisory Board is established to provide heritage advice to the Presiding Officers and to provide oversight of detailed heritage issues for Parliament House. The Board meets for the first time in May 2012.

 

2012

Acknowledgement of Peter Norman, Athlete

 
 

In August and October 2012, the Senate and House of Representatives acknowledge Peter Norman, silver medalist in the 200 metres at the 1968 Mexico Games. Norman stood in solidarity, wearing an Olympic Project for Human Rights badge, during the medal ceremony as African-American athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos gave the `black power' salute. Many believe Norman was overlooked for the 1972 Olympic Games because of his actions in Mexico. Norman died in 2006. Both chambers pass a motion acknowledging Norman's action in the cause of racial equality and apologizing for the treatment he received upon his return to Australia.

 
2012

Opposition Leader suspended from the House

 
 

On 20 August 2012 Leader of the Opposition, Tony Abbott, is suspended from the Chamber for using un-parliamentary language during Question Time. (He is ejected under Standing Order 94(a) which allows the Speaker to suspend a member from the chamber for one hour without needing a vote of the House.) Mr Abbott becomes the fourth Leader of the Opposition to be ordered from the chamber.  The others are: John Howard in 1986, Robert Menzies 1949 and Joseph Cook MP in 1914. No Prime Minister has been suspended from the chamber.

 
2012

Visit by Prime Minister of Solomon Islands

 

On 22 August 2012 the Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands, Gordon Darcy Lilo, attends a luncheon at Parliament House during his State Visit to Australia.

Watch: Visit by the Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2012

Change of Speaker

 

 

The Speaker, the Hon. Peter Slipper (Member for Fisher, Qld, 1984‒87 and 1993‒; NP, 1984‒87; LP, 1993‒2011; and Independent, 2011‒), resigns on 9 October 2012 under unusual circumstances, including an unsuccessful motion by the Leader of the Opposition to remove the Speaker citing section 35 of the Constitution.

This follows his formal statement to the House on 8 May 2012 in which he invites the Deputy Speaker to 'take the chair' following allegations of sexual harassment and allegations of fraudulent abuse of Cabcharge vouchers. Anna Burke (ALP, Member for Chisholm, Vic., (1998‒) is elected unopposed on 9 October 2012. She becomes the second female speaker of the House of Representatives and the third female Presiding Officer in the history of the Australian Parliament. [50]

Anna Burke MP

Anna Burke MP

Image courtesy of Parliamentary Handbook

2012

Visit by Prime Minister of Singapore

 
  The Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore, His Excellency Lee Hsien Loong, attended a luncheon at Parliament House during his State Visit to Australia on 11 October 2012.

Watch: Visit by Prime Minister of Singapore

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House
2012 Bali Bombings national commemoration  
  The Governor-General, Her Excellency Ms Quentin Bryce AC CVO, leads a National Commemoration on 12 October 2012 marking the 10th anniversary of the Bali Bombings in the Great Hall of Parliament House:

…We gather as one. People from across Australia join in solidarity and support, in love and friendship – to remember.

National Memorial Service to mark the 10th Anniversary of the 2002 Bali Bombings

National Memorial Service to mark the 10th Anniversary of the 2002 Bali Bombings

Image courtesy of AUSPIC

Watch: National commemoration service marking 10th anniversary of Bali Bombings

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2012 Extension of term for Governor-General  
  On 24 October 2012, the term of the Governor-General, Her Excellency Ms Quentin Bryce AC CVO, is extended for six months until March 2014. The decision is welcomed by the Leader of the Opposition, the Hon Tony Abbott MP.  
2012 Apology to victims of sexual abuse in the Australian Defence Force
 
  On 26 November 2012 the Minister for Defence, the Hon Stephen Smith (ALP, Member for Perth, WA, 1993‒), makes a ministerial statement in the House, apologising on behalf of the Government to members of the Australian Defence Force who suffered sexual or other forms of abuse in the course of their service. The apology follows a report by law firm DLA Piper which detailed several hundred allegations of abuse within the Australian Defence Force. The Shadow Minister for Defence, Science, Technology and Personnel, Stuart Robert (LP, Member for Fadden, Qld, 2007‒), offers the coalition’s ‘strongest and unqualified support’.

Watch: Apology to victims of sexual abuse in the Australian Defence Force, 26 November 2012

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2012

New rules for media

 

 

On 28 November 2012 the Presiding Officers issue new rules for media-related activity in Parliament House and its precincts, commencing with the 2013 parliamentary sittings on 5 February 2013 and replacing the previous rules and guidelines on filming and photography issued in December 2008.

The rules specify locations in public and private areas where media-related activity is prohibited, permitted, or permitted subject to approval, and set out conditions for approvals where required. They prohibit the digital manipulation of broadcast material or still photographs of parliamentary proceedings, and the previous restriction in the previous rules on filming, and remove the previous rule regarding use of still photography of chamber proceedings, for satire or ridicule. [51] Some aspects of these rules are still to be implemented by changes to the broadcasting resolutions of each House.

 

2013 Indigenous constitutional recognition  
 

On 13 February 2013, the fifth anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations, the House of Representatives passes the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples Recognition Bill 2012.

The Bill passes the Senate on 12 March 2013.

The Bill acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are the first inhabitants of this nation, and that ‘they occupied this land from time immemorial’. It also ‘seeks to foster momentum for a referendum for constitutional recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’, including a new legislative requirement for a review of public support for a referendum to be tabled in Parliament six months before any referendum bill is proposed.[52] The Bill follows earlier unsuccessful attempts to achieve constitutional change including the Howard Government’s proposed preamble in 1999, and the Coalition’s election promise in 2007 to hold a referendum to recognise Indigenous Australians in the Constitution.
Read: Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples Recognition Bill 2012, Commonwealth of Australia, January 2013

2013

First female Speaker dies

 
 

The first female Speaker in the Australian Parliament, the Hon. Joan Child (ALP, Member for Henty, Vic., 1974‒5 and 1980‒90), dies on 23 February 2013 at the age of 91.

She served as Speaker from 11 February 1986 to 5 June 1987 and from 14 September 1987 to 28 August 1989. She was Speaker when the Parliament moved into the permanent Parliament House in 1988.

The House of Representatives pauses to remember former Speaker Child with a condolence motion moved by Prime Minister Gillard on 12 March 2013.

The Hon. Joan Child, 1988 by Charles William Bush (1911‒1989)

The Hon. Joan Child, 1988 by Charles William Bush (1911‒1989)

Image courtesy of Historic Memorials Collection, Parliament House Art Collection, Canberra ACT

Watch: Condolences for the Hon. Joan Child in the Senate, 26 February 2013

Watch: Condolences for the Hon. Joan Child in the House of Representatives, 13 March 2013

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2013 ACT Legislative Assembly able to determine its own numbers  
 

In March 2013, Parliament passes the Australian Capital Territory (Self-Government) Amendment Bill 2013. The Bill gives the Australian Capital Territory Legislative Assembly the power to independently determine its own size (by enactment agreed to by a two-thirds majority of the Assembly). 

This issue has been canvassed in a number of reviews since the Territory gained self-government. In January 2013, ACT Chief Minister, Katy Gallagher, established an Expert Reference Group to consult with the community on the appropriate size of the Assembly options for changing the Assembly’s size. The Group is to report by 31 March 2013.
 
2013

Tweeting from the House

 
 

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Anna Burke (ALP, Member for Chisholm, Vic., (1998‒), Ms Anna Burke, decides not to stop members tweeting in the chamber.

She makes the ruling after the Manager of Opposition Business in the House, the Hon Christopher Pyne (LIB, Member for Sturt, SA (1993--), asks that a government backbencher withdraw a comment made on twitter during Question Time. Announcing her decision, the Speaker tells the house that a twitter ban would mean

…a blanket restriction on all electronic and communication devices in the chamber. Although this may appeal to some members, I imagine it would be strongly resisted by others.[53]

 
2013

Re-enactment of the naming of Canberra

 
  On 12 March 2013 the Governor-General, Her Excellency Ms Quentin Bryce AC CVO, and the Prime Minister, the Hon Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒), take part in a re-enactment of the naming of Canberra. The event is part of celebrations to mark the capital's 100 year anniversary on 13 March, and is held on the lawns of Parliament House near the site of the original ceremony.

Watch: Re-enactment of the naming of Canberra

Source: Fairfax Media

 

2013

The Centenary of the naming of Canberra

 
 

The Senate passes a resolution on 13 March 2013 congratulating Canberra and its citizens on their centenary. The resolution recognises ‘Canberra, through its national institutions, as a showcase of the hopes and aspirations, milestones and achievements of the Australian nation’.

 
2013 National Apology for forced adoptions  
 

On 21 March 2013, in a ceremony in the Great Hall at Parliament House, the Prime Minister the Hon Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic, 1998‒)­­­­­­ ­and Leader of the Opposition the Hon. Tony Abbott (LP, Member for Warringah, NSW, 1994‒) apologise on behalf of the nation to those affected by forced adoption policies. Speaking at the event, the Prime Minister says in part:

No collection of words alone can undo all this damage.  Or make whole the lives and families fractured by forced adoption.  Or give back childhoods that were robbed of joy and laughter.  Or make amends for the Birthdays and Christmases and Mother’s or Father’s Days that only brought a fresh wave of grief and loss.  But by saying sorry we can correct the historical record.

After the event, motions of apology are moved in the House of Representatives and in the Senate.  The Government also tables in the Senate the Government’s response to the Senate Community Affairs Reference Committee report Commonwealth Contribution to Former Forced Adoption Policies and Practices.  The response includes funding for practical measures to assist those affected by forced adoption practices.

Between 2010-12 governments of all states and the Australian Capital Territory issued apologies to those affected by forced adoption.[54]

Watch: National Apology for forced adoptions

Video courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

National Apology for forced adoptions

National Apology for forced adoptions in the Great Hall

Image courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2013 National Disability Insurance Scheme  
 

The Parliament passes the National Disability Insurance Scheme Bill 2013, clearing the way for the scheme (to be known as Disability Care Australia) to be trialled from July 2013.  Introducing the Bill to the House, the Prime Minister, the Hon Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒), says

Few actions in public life give me greater pleasure than introducing the National Disability Insurance Scheme Bill does today. The scheme to be established by this bill will transform the lives of people with disability, their families and carers. For the first time they will have their needs met in a way that truly supports them to live with choice and dignity. It will bring an end to the tragedy of services denied or delayed and instead offer people with disability the care and support they need over their lifetimes. This is a complex bill, yet at its heart is a very simple moral insight.[55]

The bill passes the House on 20 March 2013, and passes the Senate on 21 March 2013 with several amendments to which the House agrees. Although the scheme is extensive, it is unfunded.  (The 2012-13 Budget includes $1 billion in funding for the NDIS trial.[56])  On 1 May 2013 the Prime Minister, the Hon Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒), announces a 0.5 per cent increase to the Medicare Levy to (from 1 July 2014) to part fund the scheme.

 
2013 APH turns 25  
 

On 9 May 2013 the 25th anniversary of the opening of the nation’s permanent Parliament House is marked by a morning tea held in the Great Hall to acknowledge and thank those who have worked at Parliament House.

The morning tea is attended by the Prime Minister the Hon. Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒), the Leader of the Opposition the Hon. Tony Abbott (LP, Member for Warringah, NSW, 1994‒), the President of the Senate Senator the Hon. John Hogg (ALP, Senator for Queensland, 1996‒), the Speaker of the House of Representatives Anna Burke (ALP, Member for Chisholm, Vic., 1998‒), and Senior Ngunnawal woman Aunty Jannette Phillips, together with about 700 current and former employees. The morning tea also provides an opportunity to formally recognise the vision and ongoing support of the architect of Parliament House, Mr Romaldo Giurgola.The anniversary coincides with the Centenary of Canberra’s celebrations, and the Centenary organisers commission a work by the Australian Ballet dedicated to Romaldo Giurgola’s Parliament House. The artistic director works in consultation with Parliament House architect Romaldo Giurgola, using the design principles of the building to shape the ballet.

Silver anniversary morning tea in the Great Hall

Silver anniversary morning tea in the Great Hall

Image courtesy of DPS

2013

Australia’s first triangular coin to celebrate Parliament House’s 25th Anniversary

 
 

Australia’s first triangular coin is minted to mark the 25th Anniversary of Parliament House. Launched at Australian Parliament House on 9 May 2013, the triangular $5 silver proof coin, 99.9% silver, depicts Parliament House as viewed from one of its courtyards with the distinctive triangular flag mast the focal point of the design.  The Royal Australian Mint produces 10,000 coins. It also produces a special 20 cent coin made of cupro nickel, featuring Australian Parliament House with Old Parliament House in the foreground.

Australia’s first triangular coin to celebrate Parliament House’s 25th Anniversary

Image courtesy of the Royal Australian Mint

 

2013

Questions directed to non-government members

 
 

In an unusual move during Question Time in the House of Representatives on 28 May 2013, the Hon. Anthony Albanese (ALP, Member for Grayndler, NSW, 1996‒) moved a Suspension of Standing and Sessional Orders to provide the Leader of the Opposition the Hon. Tony Abbott (LP, Member for Warringah, NSW, 1994‒), to address the House on man-made climate change.

Standing Order 99 provides for a question to be asked of another Member who is not a Minister or Parliamentary Secretary. The House of Representatives Practice notes that in practice questions are rarely directed to private Members and, where they have been, are often disallowed:

Questions not meeting the conditions of standing order 99, such as questions concerning party policies and statements made inside or outside the House, notably by the Members to whom such questions are directed, have been ruled out of order.[57]

In this case, the question was directed by Rob Oakeshott (IND, Member for Lyne, NSW, 2008‒) to both the Prime Minister and, with the indulgence of the House, to the Leader of the Opposition. His question did not meet the requirements of the Standing Order, hence the motion for Suspension of Standing and Sessional Orders to allow a response to be made. The Speaker, Anna Burke, ruled that the Opposition would not be able to answer the question but would have the opportunity to address the House after Question Time.[58]
 
2013

ParlView launched on APH website

 
 

On 24 June 2013 the Department of Parliamentary Services releases its innovative broadcast services, ParlView, for public viewing. ParlView enables users to watch, search and download parliamentary broadcasts, special parliamentary events and press conferences, and historical audio-visual material via the Parliament House website.

Initially it contains footage of parliamentary activity from 14 August 2012, all parliamentary press conferences, and a selection of significant historical events including the National Apology to the Stolen Generations, the National Apology for Forced Adoptions, and visits by the Queen and US President Obama. Over time, it will include more than 55,000 hours of archival parliamentary audio-visual records dating back to 1991.[59]
 
2013 Bill to recognise local government in the Constitution  
  The Constitution Alteration (Local Government) 2013 passes both Houses on 24 June 2013 to amend section 96 of the Australian Constitution to make specific provision in relation to the granting of financial assistance by the Commonwealth to local government bodies. The legislation enables the proposal to amend the Constitution to be submitted to the electors in a referendum under section 128 of the Constitution.[60] The Prime Minister Julia Gillard had announced on 9 May 2013 that the federal Government intended to proceed with a referendum to be held on the same day as the federal election on 14 September 2013. However, due to the date of the general election being changed to 7 September 2013, the referendum does not proceed.[61]  
2013 Fiftieth anniversary of Yirrkala bark petitions  
 

On 26 June 2013 the Prime Minister the Hon. Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒) and Leader of the Opposition the Hon. Tony Abbott (LP, Member for Warringah, NSW, 1994‒) acknowledge the 50th anniversary of the Yirrkala Bark Petitions being brought to Parliament House by the Yolngu people of Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory.

The Yolngu presented the petitions in 1963 in response to the Government’s removal of more than 300 square kilometres of their land in Arnhem Land, Northern Territory, to enable bauxite to be mined. A parliamentary committee of inquiry acknowledged the rights of Yolngu as set out in the petitions, and recommends to Parliament that compensation be paid for loss of livelihood, that sacred sites be protected, and that an ongoing parliamentary committee monitor the mining project. The petitioners turned to the Supreme Court in the Northern Territory but their case also failed to achieve their objective. Whilst they were not the first claims to be made by Indigenous groups, the Yirrkala bark petitions are the first traditional documents to be recognised by the Commonwealth Parliament and, as such, they represent documentary recognition of Indigenous people in Australian law. The Yirrkala Petitions were subsequently displayed to the public in the permanent Parliament House after the permanent Parliament House opened in 1988.[62]

Yirrkala artists, Dhuwa moiety. Yirrkala Bark Petition 14.8.1963, 46.9 x 21 cm, natural ochres on bark, ink on paper

Yirrkala artists, Dhuwa moiety. Yirrkala Bark Petition 14.8.1963, 46.9 x 21 cm, natural ochres on bark, ink on paper

Image courtesy of Parliament House Art Collection, Canberra ACT

Yirrkala artists, Yirritja moiety, Yirrkala Bark Petition 28.8.1963, 46.9 x 21 cm, natural ochres on bark, ink on paper

Yirrkala artists, Yirritja moiety, Yirrkala Bark Petition 28.8.1963, 46.9 x 21 cm, natural ochres on bark, ink on paper

Image courtesy of Parliament House Art Collection, Canberra ACT

2013

Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd becomes Prime Minister

 
 

On 27 June 2013 the former Prime Minister the Hon. Kevin Rudd (ALP, Member for Griffith, Qld, 1998‒) is sworn in as Prime Minister by the Governor-General of Australia. He replaces the Hon. Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒), and is the first former Prime Minister to be returned to the position for a second term since the Hon. Robert Menzies (UAP, LP from 1944, Member for Kooyong, Vic, 1934‒66) in 1949. The Hon. Anthony Albanese (ALP, Member for Grayndler, NSW, 1996‒) is elected as Deputy Prime Minister. The leadership changes also results in a number of changes within the Ministry.

The Prime Minister the Hon. Julia Gillard (ALP, Member for Lalor, Vic., 1998‒) had called for a leadership ballot to be conducted by the Australian Labor Party caucus on 26 June. This follows continuing speculation about her leadership, and the circulation of a caucus petition seeking to allow a challenge to her prime ministership. Her predecessor, the Hon. Kevin Rudd MP, announced that he will challenge the Prime Minister. He succeeded in winning the leadership ballot by 57 votes to 45. The Hon. Kevin Rudd MP had previously served as Australia’s 26th Prime Minister from 4 December 2006 to 24 June 2010, resigning when challenged for the leadership of the ALP by the then Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon. Julia Gillard MP. He made an unsuccessful leadership challenge on 27 February 2012 and again on 21 March 2013 before his third and successful challenge on 26 June 2013.

Watch: Outgoing Prime Minister the Hon. Julia Gillard MP’s concession speech, 27 June 2013

Watch: Incoming Prime Minister the Hon. Kevin Rudd MP’s press conference, 28 June 2013

Videos courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2013 Changes to laws for migrant workers  
  The Migration Amendment (Temporary Sponsored Visas) Bill 2013 is passed by the Senate on 28 June 2013 and receives assent on 29 June 2013. The new law amends the Migration Act 1958 to strengthen the regulation of employer-sponsored skilled migrant workers who enter Australia under the 457 visa system.  
2013 End of National Tally Room in Canberra  
  Australia’s Electoral Commissioner, Ed Killesteyn, announces on 2 July 2013 that the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) will not operate a National Tally Room during the 2013 federal election. The AEC now delivers online election results to the media and general public via its website, and the National Tally Room no longer plays a role in the actual delivery of election results. [63]  
2013

Visit by President of Timor-Leste

 
  On 8 July 2013 the President of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, His Excellency Mr Taur Matan Ruak, attended a luncheon at Parliament House during his State Visit to Australia Watch: State Visit by President of Timor-Leste
2013 Prorogation of 43rd Parliament  
 

On 5 August 2013 the Official Secretary to the Governor-General reads the proclamation on behalf of the Governor-General of Australia that the 43rd Parliament is prorogued until 7 September 2013, the date set for the 2013 federal election.

The 43rd Parliament was the first hung Commonwealth Parliament since 1941. After the election, the Australian Labor Party negotiated agreement with three Independents and the Australian Greens giving it the necessary support to form a minority Government. The hung parliament, and the resulting Agreement for a better Parliament: Parliamentary Reform, had a major impact on the work and practices of the 43rd Parliament including the introduction of time limits on questions and answers, extra sitting hours, and greatly increased opportunities for private Members including a significant increase in the number of private members’ bills —more than in any year since Federation in 1901.[64]

 

Watch: Prorogation of 43rd Parliament

Videos courtesy of DPS Broadcasting, Parliament House

2013

Parliament House Open Day 2013

  Parliament House, celebrating its 25th anniversary, opened its doors to the public on 24 August 2013. Visitors were able to walk from the ceremonial main front doors, through the Great Hall, Members’ Hall, Cabinet Room and out into the Prime Minister’s courtyard. More than 8 000 people visited Parliament House and toured areas not normally open to the public. The Open Day featured a visit by the principal design architect, Romaldo Giurgola, as well as artists talking about their contributions to the making of the building.

Parliament House 25th Anniversary Open Day 2013

Parliament House 25th Anniversary Open Day 2013

Image courtesy of House of Representatives

2013 Governor-General offers resignation over Labor leadership ballot  
 

On 13 October 2013 the Governor-General, Quentin Bryce AC, offers her resignation to Prime Minister Tony Abbott to avoid any perception of bias in anticipation of the election of her son-in-law, Bill Shorten (ALP, Member for Maribyrnong, Vic., 2007  ̶ ) as leader of the Australian Labor Party and Leader of the Opposition. Mr Abbott declines to accept the Governor-General’s resignation on the basis that ‘she will retire in March next year and … the Government commands the House of Representatives with a significant margin’.

The Governor-General is currently serving an extended term in office that she did not seek. Her agreement to stay on was a measure of her personal commitment to provide continuity at a time of political turbulence and she should be commended for her dedication to public service.[65]

 

2013

Opening of 44th Parliament

 

 

The Governor-General, Quentin Bryce AC, opens the 44th Parliament on 12 November 2013, following the Commonwealth election held on 7 September 2013 at which the Coalition, led by the Hon. Tony Abbott (LP, Member for Warringah, NSW, 1994‒), wins government.

At the opening of the 44th Parliament, an Indigenous ceremony of welcome is held in the Great Hall and the Parliament is officially opened. Members of the House of Representatives, Territory Senators, and Senators filling casual vacancies are sworn in and, in the House of Representatives, the Hon Bronwyn Bishop MP (LP, Member for Mackellar, NSW, 1994  ̶ ) is elected as Speaker. In the afternoon Her Excellency the Governor-General gives an opening address.

Watch: Official opening of the 44th Parliament

Read: The Governor-General’s speech

The Hon. Bronwyn Bishop MP

The new Speaker, the Hon. Bronwyn Bishop MP

2013 First Aboriginal woman elected to Commonwealth Parliament  
 

At the opening of the 44th Parliament on 12 November 2013 Senator Nova Peris (ALP, Senator for the Northern Territory, 2013  ̶ ) is sworn in, becoming the first Aboriginal woman to be elected to the Senate and to the Commonwealth Parliament as a result of the Commonwealth election held on 7 September 2013.

Prior to the swearing-in ceremony, Senator Peris receives a traditional Indigenous blessing from Aboriginal land owners who travelled to Parliament House from the Northern Territory. Senator Peris was the first Aboriginal person to win an Olympic gold medal as a member of the Australian women’s hockey team at the 1996 Olympic Games. As the Senator for the Northern Territory, she takes up her seat at the commencement of the 44th Parliament, and gives an emotional first speech to the Parliament on 13 November 2013 still wearing white clay from the Indigenous blessing:

I was born in Darwin in the Northern Territory and I retain my strong cultural and spiritual ties to my country, to Mother Earth. I am a member of the oldest continuous living culture on the earth. I am proud that this hill that we meet on here today is culturally significant to the Ngambri people as representing the womb of the 'Woman' on this Country. It is very significant to me to be the first Aboriginal woman elected to the federal parliament of Australia.[66]

 

Watch: First speech by Senator Nova Peris

Read: First speech by Senator Nova Peris
2013

Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd resigns

 
 

Former Prime Minister, the Hon. Kevin Rudd MP (ALP, Member for Griffith, Qld, 1998  ̶ ) announces his resignation from the Commonwealth Parliament on 13 November 2013. During his speech, he states:

To have served as Prime Minister of Australia has been a great honour afforded to very few in our country's history. For the future I wish the Prime Minister and his government well. I do that because I wish Australia well. The prime ministership of this Commonwealth is not easy. It is the hardest job in the land. The expectations of whoever holds the office are infinite, while the resources available are finite.[67]

He formally submits his resignation as Member for Griffith, Queensland on 22 November 2013, effective immediately. Mr Rudd is the fourth of Australia’s 28 Prime Ministers to have lost an election or the leadership of his party and resigned from parliament shortly afterwards, thereby bringing about a by-election.[68]

The Hon. Kevin Rudd MP

Kevin Rudd

Watch: Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s resignation speech

Read: Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s resignation speech

2013

Retirement of the Clerk of the House of Representatives

 
 

Mr Bernard Wright AO, Clerk of the House of Representatives since December 2009, retires on 31 December 2013. The new Clerk is Mr David Elder, who commences in the role on 1 January 2014.

 

2014

Milestones

Details

 

18 February

High Court declares void the WA half Senate election

On 15 November 2013, following the loss of 1,370 ballots, the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) lodges a petition with the Court of Disputed Returns seeking an order that the election of six senators in Western Australia be declared void. An inquiry commissioned by the AEC and led by former Australian Federal Police Commissioner Mick Keelty AO identifies significant and systemic shortfalls and failings in Senate ballot paper security, storage and handling in Western Australia.[69]

On 18 February 2014, the High Court, sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns, declares void the 2013 half Senate election in Western Australia, the first time that this has occurred.[70]

On 21 February, the Special Minister for State, Senator Michael Ronaldson (Lib, Vic.), announces the resignations of the Electoral Commissioner, Ed Killesteyn, and the Australian Electoral Officer for Western Australia, Peter Kramer. Tom Rogers is appointed as Electoral Commissioner on 15 December 2014, having acted in that position since Killesteyn’s resignation.

 

19 March

Ministerial accountability: Assistant Treasurer stands aside

Assistant Treasurer Senator Arthur Sinodinos (Lib, NSW) stands aside[71] after the Opposition suspends standing orders to move a motion requiring him to provide a full explanation to the Senate about his interest in Australian Water Holdings after allegations about the company were raised in the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC).[72] He will formally resign as Assistant Treasurer in December 2014 pending the outcome of the ICAC inquiry.

 

28 March

New Governor-General sworn in

Peter Cosgrove is sworn-in as the 26th Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia and is appointed Knight of the Order of Australia.[73] He replaces the 25th Governor-General, Quentin Bryce. She is the first woman to hold the vice-regal position, and she is appointed Dame of the Order of Australia (AD) on 25 March 2014.[74]

Peter Cosgrove is sworn-in as the 26th Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia
Image source: ParlView, 28 March 2014

Watch: Governor-General swearing-in ceremony, 28 March 2014

Read: Address to the Joint Sitting of Parliament on the occasion of the swearing in of the Governor-General

28 March

Motion of no confidence in Speaker

The Manager of Opposition Business, Tony Burke MP (ALP, Watson, NSW), moves a motion of no confidence against the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Bronwyn Bishop MP (Lib, Mackellar, NSW), accusing her of partiality in favour of Government members rather than acting as ‘the custodian of the rights and privileges of elected Members of the Parliament’.[75] The motion is unsuccessful, 83 votes to 51.

According to House of Representatives Practice, the Speaker’s actions can only be criticised by a substantive motion, including dissent from a Speaker’s ruling or a censure or want of confidence motion. Whilst they are rare, there have been several substantive motions criticising the actions of a Speaker in the history of the Parliament.[76]

Motion of no confidence in Speaker
Motion of no confidence in Speaker

Image source: ParlView, 28 March 2014

5 April

Western Australian Senate election

Western Australians go to the polls to elect six senators in the 2014 WA Senate election. This new election is conducted following the discovery of missing ballots during the 2013 WA Senate election and the decision of the High Court, sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns, to declare the 2013 Western Australian Senate election void. Two days before the election, the AEC admits failing to properly secure 75 ballot papers at a mobile pre-polling booth at an aged care facility.

The results are announced by the AEC on 29 April 2014.[77] The composition of the new Senate sets a record, with 18 senators on the crossbench including 10 senators representing the Australian Greens.

As a result of the 2013 Senate election issue, questions are raised about the need for electoral reform. The AEC commences an overhaul of its policies and processes in December 2013, focusing on improving ballot paper security.[78] In May 2014 the Australian National Audit Office undertakes an independent performance audit in the AEC, while the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters (JSCEM) undertakes an inquiry into the election (the final report is released in April 2015).[79]

Australian Senate - Parliament of Australia
Senate chamber, Parliament House

24 April

Royal reception 2014

His Royal Highness the Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, attend a Reception in the Great Hall at Parliament House during their Australian tour. His Royal Highness gives a speech reflecting on Australia’s qualities and role in the Asia-Pacific region.[80]

Royal reception 2014
Image source: ParlView, 24 April 2014

Watch: Parliamentary reception in the presence of their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

Watch: Speech to the Parliament by His Royal Highness the Duke of Cambridge, 24 April 2014

26 May

‘Pipe bomb’ produced at Senate Estimates hearing

Senator Bill Heffernan (Lib, NSW) produces a fake ‘pipe bomb’ at a Senate Estimates hearing of the Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee in order to support his argument that ‘[t]his building is no longer secure’ because of new security arrangements introduced by the Department of Parliamentary Services.[81] The new arrangements, introduced on 19 May 2014, were initially to be trialled over a twelve-month period. However, full screening is reinstated on 2 July 2014, in preparation for the visit by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, and remains in place thereafter.[82]

Senator Bill Heffernan with fake pipe bomb at Senate Estimates hearing
Senator Bill Heffernan with fake pipe bomb at Senate Estimates hearing

Image source: ParlView, 26 May 2014

27 May

Pacific nations call on Parliament to act on climate change

A delegation from the Pacific Island nations of Kiribati, Tuvalu and Papua New Guinea perform a song on the lawns of Parliament House, urging Australia's parliamentarians to take urgent action on climate change. The delegation seeks cuts in carbon emissions and assistance to mitigate the impact of climate change on their countries.

 

8 June

The Federation Chamber turns 20

The Federation Chamber of the House of Representatives celebrates its twentieth anniversary.[83] The Federation Chamber (known as the Main Committee prior to 2012) is a debating committee established as an alternative venue to the Chamber of the House. It operates in parallel with the Chamber in order to allow two streams of business to be debated concurrently.[84]

The number of bills before the House had increased steadily since Federation, resulting in less time for detailed consideration of each bill. In 1986 the Procedure Committee (34th Parliament) recommended the use of legislation committees but, in 1993, the Procedure Committee (37th Parliament) rejected this recommendation on the basis that legislation committees did not appear to save the House time. As a result the ‘committee of the whole’ stage of bill consideration was abolished and the House agreed to several reforms including the Main Committee to act as a second chamber. The Main Committee met for the first time on 8 June 1994.[85] On 22 June 2015, the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Procedure report ‘Role of the Federation Chamber: Celebrating 20 years of operation’ becomes the first report to be tabled in the Federation Chamber.[86]

Federation Chamber, Parliament House
Federation Chamber, Parliament House

18 June

A matter of privilege: the use of CCTV footage

On joint motion of Senators Cory Bernardi (Lib, SA) and John Faulkner (ALP, NSW), the Senate refers to the Committee of Privileges the Department of Parliamentary Service’s use of CCTV footage in an internal disciplinary matter. The Committee’s Terms of Reference are to inquire as to: whether there was any improper (actual or attempted) interference with a senator in the free performance of his duties; and whether disciplinary action was taken against any person in connection with the provision of information to a senator.

The Privileges Committee tables its report on 5 December 2014. The report examines (among other things) the use of CCTV footage by the Department of Parliamentary Services (DPS) for internal investigations involving DPS staff and ‘whether there was any improper interference, or attempted improper interference, with the free performance by Senator Faulkner or any other senator of their duties as a senator’.[87]

The President of the Senate, Senator Stephen Parry, tables a response to the Privileges Committee report on 2 March 2015.[88]

 

7 July

New President of the Senate

Senator Stephen Parry (Lib, Tas.) becomes the 24th President of the Senate.

Senator Stephen Parry
Senator Stephen Parry, President of the Senate

Image source: Parliament of Australia

7 July

New Senate sworn in

The new Senate is sworn in by the Governor-General, Peter Cosgrove). The new Senate includes 14 new senators[89] and comprises:

  • 33 Coalition senators
  • 25 Australian Labor Party senators
  • 10 Greens senators
  • 8 senators from smaller parties.[90]

Senate swearing in of new senators followed by Morning Tea in Members’ Hall
Image source: ParlView, 7 July 2014

Watch: Senate swearing in of new senators followed by Morning Tea in Members’ Hall

8 July

Address by the Prime Minister of Japan

During his visit to Australia the Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, gives an address to members and senators in the House of Representatives.[91]

Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe
Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe

Image source: Auspic

Watch: Address to the Parliament by Shinzo Abe, 8 July 2014

Read: Address to the Parliament by Shinzo Abe, 8 July 2014

19-22 July

Malaysian Airlines MH17 tragedy

Prime Minister Tony Abbott MP announces that the Australian National Flag will be flown at half-mast on all Australian Government establishments in Australia and overseas, including Parliament House, as a mark of respect to the Australians who lost their lives on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17.[92] The scheduled international passenger flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur crashed on 17 July 2014 after being shot down, killing all 283 passengers and 15 crew on board, including 38 Australians.

On 22 July 2014 a ceremony takes place in the Marble Hall of Parliament House for the official signing of the Condolence Book in support and sympathy for those tragically killed on Flight MH17.[93] A National Day of Mourning and National Memorial Service for the victims are planned for 7 August 2014.

Watch: Signing of the official Condolence Book in support and sympathy for those tragically killed on Flight MH17

26 August

Condolence motion for Ukraine air disaster

Prime Minister Tony Abbott MP moves a condolence motion expressing the House of Representative’s ‘outrage and condemnation at the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 over Eastern Ukraine on 18 July’, and extending the House’s sympathy to the families, friends and loved ones of those who perished in the disaster.[94]

The Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten MP (ALP, Maribyrnong, Vic.), makes a statement in support of the condolence motion, describing the events as ‘a global tragedy which has struck at Australian hearts.’[95]

Condolence motion in the House of Representatives for the Ukraine air disaster
Condolence motion in the House of Representatives for the Ukraine air disaster

Image source: ParlView, 26 August 2014

7 September

Death of Harry Evans

Harry Evans, the longest serving Clerk of the Australian Senate, dies. Evans served as Clerk from 1988 to 2009.[96]

Former Clerk of the Senate, Harry Evans

Former Clerk of the Senate, Harry Evans

Image source: Brian Jenkins/Wikimedia Commons

21 September

Increased security at Parliament House

Following an urgent review of the safety of Parliament House, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) assumes responsibility for internal and external security for Australian Parliament House amid heightened security concerns. According to the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott MP:

In this building, there will be more armed police, fewer points of access, and more scrutiny of parliamentary passes.[97]

The move to increase security measures follows the raising of the National Terrorism Public Alert from medium to high on 12 September, the first time the threat has been raised since the system was introduced in 2003.[98]

The imposiing structure of the flag pole atop Australia's Parliament House

Image source: Phillip Minnis/Shutterstock.com

22 September

National security

Prime Minister Tony Abbott MP updates the House of Representatives on challenges to Australia’s national security. He acknowledges the Opposition’s bi-partisan support for ensuring the safety of all Australians and outlines three key messages:

  • that the Government will do whatever is possible to keep people safe
  • that Australia’s security measures at home and abroad are directed against terrorism, not religion, and
  • Australians should live normally because the terrorists’ goal is ‘to scare us out of being ourselves’.[99]

The Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten MP, makes a statement in reply.[100]

 

24 September

Counter-terrorism Bill introduced

The Attorney-General Senator George Brandis (Lib, Qld) introduces the Counter-Terrorism Legislation Amendment (Foreign Fighters) Bill 2014 to the Senate.[101] The Bill seeks to respond to the threat posed by Australians engaging in, and returning from, conflicts in foreign states, including by implementing recommendations made in a recent review of Australia’s counter-terrorism laws. The Bill, incorporating amendments recommended by the bipartisan Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security (PJCIS), is passed by the Senate on 29 October and the House on 30 October.[102]

Magnifying glass over an Australian Flag
Image source: Ken Hodge/Wikimedia Commons

24 September

Recommendations on use of electronic devices

The House of Representatives Standing Committee on Procedure finalises its report on the Use of electronic devices in the Chamber and Federation Chamber. The report recommends that:

  • the current ‘Guidelines for members on the status and handling of their records and correspondence’ be updated to include communications by members via electronic devices, and
  • the House consider and adopt a resolution that clarifies how electronic devices are to be used in the Chamber.[103]

A motion on electronic devices in the Chamber is passed by the House of Representatives on 26 March 2015, allowing their use subject to certain conditions.[104]

Close up of a man using mobile smart phone
Image source: maradonna 8888/Shutterstock.com

30 September

Guest lecture by Speaker of the House of Commons

The Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow MP, addresses some of the challenges faced by modern parliaments and representatives across the Commonwealth, in the era of the digital revolution and ‘disruptive’ technology.[105]

The Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow MP
Image source: ParlView, 30 September 2014

Watch: The Speaker of the House of Commons presenting a Guest of Parliament lecture

2 October

Presiding Officers’ decision on covered visitors to Parliament House

In the context of heightened national security concerns the President of the Senate, Senator Stephen Parry and the Speaker, Bronwyn Bishop MP introduce interim security measures to ban face-coverings from being worn in the building.

On 20 October the Presiding Officers issue a further ruling that people with face coverings be visually identified upon entry to Parliament House, ‘thereby enabling persons with facial coverings to move from that point freely into the public portions of the building, including the chamber galleries’.[106]

 

21 October

Former Prime Minister Gough Whitlam dies

Former Australian Prime Minister Gough Whitlam (ALP, Werriwa, NSW) dies aged 98 years. Mr Whitlam served as Australia’s 21st Prime Minister before being dismissed from office by Governor-General Sir John Kerr on 11 November 1975. His contribution to Australia is marked in condolence motions led by the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott MP and Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten MP.

A NSW state memorial service is held at the Sydney Town Hall on 5 November.

Gough Whitlam

Gough Whitlam (1955)

Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Watch: Condolence motions from the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott MP and the Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten MP

23 October

Statement by Speaker regarding Parliament House security

The Speaker, Bronwyn Bishop MP makes a statement to the House of Representatives concerning security arrangements around Parliament House in view of the terrorist attack on the Canadian Parliament on 22 October. She notes that the design of the Australian Parliament is very different to that of the Canadian Parliament, and that there are ‘layers of security measures’ in place that would prevent such an attack from succeeding here.[107]

Parliament House Forecourt
Parliament House Forecourt

14 November

Address by the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

David Cameron, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, gives an address to members and senators in the House of Representatives chamber.[108]

David Cameron, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
Image source: ParlView, 14 November 2014

Watch: Address by David Cameron, MP, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

17 November

Address by the President of the People’s Republic of China

Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China, gives a speech at a dinner held in the Great Hall of Parliament House.[109]

Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China

Image source: ParlView, 17 November 2014

Watch: Speech by Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China

18 November

Address by the Prime Minister of the Republic of India

Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of the Republic of India, gives an address to members and senators in the House of Representatives chamber.[110]

Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of the Republic of India
Image source: ParlView, 18 November 2014

Watch: Address by Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of the Republic of India

19 November

State visit by the President of the French Republic

François Hollande, President of the French Republic, visits Parliament House during his State Visit to Australia, which coincides with the meeting of world leaders attending the G20 Summit in Canberra.[111]

François Hollande, President of the French Republic
Image source: ParlView, 19 November 2014

Watch: State visit to Australia by François Hollande, President of the French Republic, joint media conference with the Prime Minister Tony Abbott MP

26 November

Security Management Board for Parliament House

The Speaker, Bronwyn Bishop, MP introduces the Parliamentary Service Amendment Bill 2014 into the House. The Bill amends the composition of the Security Management Board include the Australian Federal Police. In introducing the Bill, the Speaker states that:

... the security arrangements in the parliamentary precincts are under continual and careful assessment, and I am working closely with a range of departments including security and intelligence agencies, in carrying out the necessary security works within the parliamentary precinct.[112]

During the Bill’s second reading in the Senate, the President notes that the authority to make decisions regarding security for Parliament House remains vested in the Presiding Officers.[113] The Bill passes both Houses on 26 March 2015.

Parliament House flagpole

2015

Milestones

Details

 

9 February

Martin Place siege remembered

The House of Representatives passes a motion, moved by the Prime Minister, acknowledging the courage of those held during the siege of the Lindt Café in Martin Place, Sydney, in December 2014, and extending the sympathies of the House to the family and friends of Katrina Dawson and Tori Johnson, who were killed in the siege.[114] The families of Ms Dawson and Mr Johnson, along with survivors of the siege, are present to hear the speeches. The Senate also expresses its sympathy to the victims and their families.[115]

 

10 February

Enhanced security arrangements at Parliament House

The Speaker, Bronwyn Bishop MP, announces that, as part of the continuing upgrade to security at Parliament House, she has agreed to an armed Australian Federal Police (AFP) presence in the attendants’ booth adjacent to the chamber.[116]

 

12 February

Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran: the Parliament calls for sentence commutation

The House of Representatives and the Senate pass cross-party motions calling on the Indonesian government to ‘give consideration to the circumstances of Mr Chan and Mr Sukumaran and their rehabilitation in prison, their suffering and that of their families, and commute their sentences to an appropriate term of imprisonment.’[117]

Some 100 senators and members also sign a letter to the Indonesian Ambassador requesting that the sentences be commuted.[118]

Despite concerted diplomatic representations, a public campaign, and the pleas of friends and family, the two men are executed with six other prisoners on 29 April 2015. 

 

23 February

State visit by the King and Queen of Norway

Their Majesties King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway attend an official dinner at Parliament House as part of their official visit to Australia (22 to 27 February 2015). They are accompanied by a delegation of senior government and business leaders.

Their Majesties King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway with Prime Minister Tony Abbott at Parliament House

Their Majesties King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway with Prime Minister Tony Abbott at Parliament House.

Image source: Auspic

18 March

Visit by the Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam

Mr Nguyen Tan Dung, Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, visits Parliament House during his State Visit to Australia (16-18 March). During his visit, the two Prime Ministers sign the Australia-Vietnam Enhanced Comprehensive Partnership and the two countries establish a Memorandum of Understanding establishing a youth exchange program.

Mr Nguyen Tan Dung, Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam

Image source: Auspic

Watch: His Excellency Mr Nguyen Tan Dung, PM of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam arrive at Parliament House; and

The signing of the Australia-Vietnam Enhanced Comprehensive Partnership

Read: the Prime Ministers’ Joint Statement on the Comprehensive Partnership

The Declaration on Enhancing the Australia-Vietnam Comprehensive Partnership

19 March

Crown succession law changes

The Succession to the Crown Bill 2015 is passed by both Houses. The legislation follows the Succession to the Crown Act 2013 (UK), which was enacted on 25 April 2013, and like that Act, ends the system of male primogeniture so that the order of succession is determined by the order of birth. The legislation also removes provisions under which members of the royal family who marry a person of the Roman Catholic faith lose their place in the succession.[119]

Before the legislation could be passed, all Australian states were required to pass legislation requesting the Commonwealth to enact legislation for the whole of Australia.[120] Australia was the last of the 16 realms that have Queen Elizabeth II as their head of state to complete its legislation. On 26 March 2015, the changes to succession to the Crown across all the realms came into effect simultaneously.[121]

 

20 March

Former Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser dies

Former Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser (Lib, Wannon, Vic.) dies aged 84 years. Mr Fraser served as Australia’s 22nd Prime Minister from 1975 to 1983, taking office after the dismissal of the Whitlam Government by Governor-General John Kerr in November 1975.

His contribution to Australia is marked in condolence motions led by the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott MP, and Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten MP.

A state memorial service is held at the Melbourne’s Scots’ Church on 27 March.

Malcolm Fraser

Malcolm Fraser

Image courtesy of Polixeni Papapetrou and State Library of Victoria.

Watch: Condolence motions in the House of Representatives

26 March

Parliament House security upgrade

Both the House of Representatives and the Senate approve a proposal to upgrade the security of Parliament House. The new security measures to be taken include a perimeter fence, a gatehouse facility at the Ministerial Wing entrance, and additional vehicle bollards.[122] The proposed works are referred to the Senate Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee for inquiry and report by 13 May 2015.[123]

 

12 May

Centenary of Gallipoli – Motion by the Prime Minister

In a motion marking the centenary, on 25 April 2015, of Australian and New Zealand troops landing at Gallipoli, the Prime Minister says:

On Anzac Day, the Leader of the Opposition and I stood together with thousands of Australians and New Zealanders on the distant shores of Gallipoli ... (W)e paid our respects to the Anzacs whose spirit has moved our people for a century. We went to honour the generation of young men who rallied to serve our country when our country called and who were faithful even unto death.

At dawn at Anzac Cove and later at Lone Pine, these places of peace that were once battlefields, we remembered the original Anzacs. This parliament was only 13 years old when the Great War broke out. This parliament still sat in Melbourne. Nine sitting MPs served in the Great War. In all, some 120 members of the Commonwealth parliament served in World War I. On behalf of all members, I pay my respects to them ...

On every Anzac Day, the phrase echoes around our services: 'Lest we forget'. But we have not forgotten and we will not forget.[124]

 

27 May

Remonstrance from the Norfolk Legislative Assembly

The Speaker of the Norfolk Island Legislative Assembly, David Buffett, delivers both Houses of Parliament a Remonstrance, setting out the Assembly’s grievances regarding the removal of self-government ‘without genuine consultation and negotiation’.[125] (A remonstrance is a formal document setting out grievances or complaints and seeking their redress.)

A series of Commonwealth government and parliamentary reports have indicated the need for major reforms in Norfolk Island administration, social services, finance and governance. The Norfolk Island Legislative Amendment Act 2015, which receives Royal Assent on 26 May, abolishes the Norfolk Island Legislative Assembly and replaces it with an Advisory Council, which will transition to an elected Regional Council with local and municipal responsibilities from July 2016.[126]

 

15 June

Magna Carta birthday celebrations

2015 sees a worldwide program of events to mark the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta. Parliament House, home to one of only four known surviving manuscripts of the 1297 issue of the Magna Carta, hosts a busy program of events.

On the morning of 15 April, the Presiding Officers, the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten MP, celebrate the anniversary at a reception in the Great Hall of Parliament House—which has the distinction of being the first Magna Carta anniversary celebration in the world. Speaking at the event, the Prime Minister describes the Magna Carta as ‘perhaps the most important constitutional document of all time, that has shaped our history and that of so much of the modern world’.[127] That evening, 600 people gather in the Great Hall for a special ‘Magna Carta’ edition of the ABC’s Q&A program.

In May the President of the Senate, Senator Stephen Parry, launches the second edition of ‘Australia’s Magna Carta’.

DPS staff install the Magna Carta in the Great Hall of Parliament House

DPS staff install the Magna Carta in the Great Hall of Parliament House for the 800th anniversary event.

Image source: Auspic

Watch:

The Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Celebration

The Senate Occassional Lecture by Her Excellency Mrs Menna Rawlings CMG

Big Ideas Constitution Day Speakers’ Forum: Magna Carta

Magna Carta Symposium part one and part two.

Read: The Prime Minister’s Magna Carta Lecture

17 June

First time former opposing state/territory leaders in the same chamber

Former ACT Chief Minister, now senator for the ACT, Katy Gallagher (ALP), gives her first speech in the Senate.

Senator Gallagher is chosen by the ACT Legislative Assembly on 25 March 2015 to represent the Territory in the Senate after the resignation of Senator Kate Lundy (ALP).[128] She is sworn in on 26 March 2015.[129]

Senator Gallagher’s appointment to the casual vacancy marks the first time that a Premier or Chief Minister has faced their former opposition counterpart in the same chamber in the same Parliament. Senator Zed Seselja (Lib, ACT) was Leader of the ACT Opposition (December 2007—June 2013) before resigning to stand for the Senate at the 2013 election.

Katy Gallagher

Katy Gallagher

Image source: Parliament of Australia

Watch: Senator Gallagher’s first speech

Read: Simon Speldewinde, ‘First time opposing state/territory leaders in the same chamber’, FlagPost, Parliamentary Library 17 June 2015.

17 July

National memorial service marking the anniversary of the downing of flight MH17

On 17 July a national memorial service is held in the Great Hall of Parliament House to commemorate the lives lost in the downing of MH17 over the Ukraine.

A memorial plaque is unveiled in the House of Representatives Eastern Formal Gardens the same day.

The Governor-General addresses the National Memorial Service honoring the victims of Flight MH17

The Governor-General addresses the National Memorial Service honoring the victims of Flight MH17.

Image source. Parlview video

Watch: the National Memorial Service

Read: the addresses to the MH17 National Memorial Service by His Excellency Sir Peter Cosgrove and the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott MP.

21 July

Death of the Member for Canning

Liberal MP Don Randall dies in Boddington, WA. Mr Randall has represented the electorate of Canning (WA) since 2001, having previously served as the Member for Swan (1996-1998).

Mr Randall’s death is marked by a minute’s silence and several speeches in Adjournment in the Senate, and by a condolence motion in the House of Representatives.[130] A white rose is placed on Mr Randall’s desk.

On 17 August, the Speaker informs the House of Representatives that the by-election to fill the vacancy in the division of Canning will be held on 19 September. It is won by the Liberal candidate, former SAS officer Andrew Hastie, with 55.26% of votes (two party preferred), a 6.5% swing against the government. He is sworn in on 12 October and gives his first speech on 13 October.

Don Randall MP

Don Randall MP

Image source: Auspic

Watch: the condolence motion in the House of Representatives.

Andrew Hastie MP

Andrew Hastie MP

Image source: Auspic

2 August 2015

Resignation of the Speaker

Bronwyn Bishop MP resigns as Speaker of the House of Representatives,[131] the third resignation of a Speaker since 2011, and the ninth since 1901.[132] Mrs Bishop’s resignation follows sustained criticism of her use of travel entitlements, in particular the use of a chartered helicopter to attend a Liberal Party function.

That same day the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott MP, announces the establishment of a committee to review the parliamentary entitlements system, co-chaired by the former Secretary of the Department of Finance, Mr David Tune AO PSM, and the Chair of the Remuneration Tribunal, Mr John Conde AO. The committee releases its report in March 2016.[133]

Bronwyn Bishop

Bronwyn Bishop, Speaker of the House of Representatives

Image source: Auspic

10 August

A new Speaker of the House of Representatives

Tony Smith MP (Lib, Casey, Vic.) is elected unopposed to the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives, the 32nd person to hold this office. In his address to the chamber Mr Smith indicates that he will not be attending weekly party meetings while he is Speaker.[134]

Hony Tony Smith MP, Speaker of the House of Representatives

Tony Smith, Speaker of the House of Representatives

Image source: Parliament of Australia

Tony Smith being taken to the Speaker's chair

Image source: Auspic

Watch: The election of the Speaker

17 August

Australia Post issues new Parliament House stamp

The President of the Senate, Senator Stephen Parry, launches an Australia, New Zealand and Singapore joint stamp issue marking 50 years of bilateral relations between the three countries.

Designed by Sonia Young of Australia Post, the stamps feature the parliament houses of the three countries.[135]

Senator Stephen Parry

The President of the Senate, Senator Stephen Parry

Image Source: Auspic

21 August

Anniversary of parliamentary broadcasting

The Senate celebrated 25 years since the proceedings of the chamber were first televised in 1991. Daily sessions of the House of Representatives began to be televised in 1991. Prior to 1991, television broadcasts of Parliament had taken place on 17 February 1959 (for the opening of the 23rd Parliament) and in 1974 (for the joint sitting of Parliament).[136]

 

15 September

A new Prime Minister and a new ministry

Malcolm Turnbull MP (Lib, Wentworth, NSW) is sworn in as Australia’s 29th Prime Minister. This follows his resignation from the ministry on 14 September, citing the failure of Prime Minister Tony Abbott to provide economic leadership. Mr Turnbull wins the resultant leadership ballot 54 votes to 44, becoming Australia’s fourth prime minister since the 2007 election.

Mr Turnbull announces his new Ministry on 20 September,[137] increasing to five the number of women in Cabinet and the number of women in the Ministry overall to nine.

The Member for Hasluck (WA), Ken Wyatt MP, is appointed as Assistant Minister for Health, and is the first Indigenous Australian to be appointed to the Executive Council.

Wyatt Roy MP (Lib, Longman, Qld) becomes the youngest ever Commonwealth minister (25) when he is commissioned Assistant Minister for Immigration—a record previously held by Kate Ellis MP (ALP, Adelaide, SA) who in 2007 became a minister at the age of 30.

Senator Marise Payne (NSW) is appointed Minister for Defence, and is, the Prime Minister says, ‘the first woman to be Minister for Defence in our nation’s history’.[138] Other female parliamentarians have previously held Defence-related ministries/assistant ministries.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull

Image source: Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet webpage

The Turnbull Cabinet

Turnbull Cabinet

Image source: Auspic

Watch: Malcolm Turnbull announcing his new ministry

22 October

Electronic petitions

The Speaker, Tony Smith MP, informs members that the Departments of the House of Representatives and of Parliamentary Services are working to develop an electronic petitions website and system for the House, foreshadowing the need for the House to consider changes to its Standing Orders.[139] Senate standing orders already enable the presentation of electronic petitions in that chamber (SO 70).

The Standing Orders of the House are amended in 2016 to provide for an electronic petitions system.

 

9 November

House of Representatives trials new arrangements for Question Time

The House begins a trial of new arrangements for Question Time under which time is set aside each day for private government members to ask ministers constituency questions. Announcing the change, the Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull MP, says ‘local issues are absolutely the bread and butter of every member's job’.[140] The changes will be trialled until the end of the year.[141]

 

15 November

Parliament House illuminated for France

Parliament House is illuminated with the French Tricolore as a mark of solidarity with the people of France in the wake of a series of terrorist attacks in Paris on 13 November. Parliament House continues to be illuminated until 22 November.

When Parliament resumes on 23 November, the Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, MP, [142] and the Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten, MP,[143] express their condolences.

Parliament House illuminated for France

Image source: Auspic

Read:

The Presiding Officer’s joint statement on the illumination of Parliament House

Mr Turnbull’s statement

Mr Shorten’s statement

Watch: the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition’s statements on the Paris terrorist attacks

18 November

The ‘Big Picture’ on the move

The Tom Roberts painting The Opening of the first Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia by HRH Duke of Cornwall and York (later King George V) on May 9, 1901 is removed from its home in the foyer of the Main Committee Room and loaned to the National Gallery of Australia.

There it is the centrepiece of a major Tom Roberts exhibition (December 2015 to March 2016). It will be returned to Parliament House during the 2016 autumn recess.

This is the first time the painting—which weighs over 400kg and stands almost 4m high—has left Parliament House since its installation in 1988.

Tom Roberts, Opening of the First Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia

Tom Roberts, Opening of the First Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia by H.R.H. The Duke of Cornwall and York (Later King George V), May 9, 1901, 1903, oil on canvas

Image source: Parliament of Australia

The team involved in the epic move.
The team involved in the epic move.

Image source: Auspic

25 November

Tjuringa gifted to the Parliament and the Australian people by the Warlpiri people

On behalf of the Parliament, the President of the Senate, Senator Stephen Parry, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Tony Smith MP, accept the gift of a tjuringa (a traditional Indigenous ceremonial object).

The tjuringa had originally been given by the Warlpiri people to the then Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Ian Viner AO QC in 1978, in exchange for the title deed to their traditional lands at Yuendumu (Northern Territory).[144]

Warlpiri community representatives Harry Tjakamarra Nelson, Otto Jungarryi Sims and Robin Granites Japanangka with the President and the Speaker.

Warlpiri community representatives Harry Tjakamarra Nelson, Otto Jungarryi Sims and Robin Granites Japanangka with the President and the Speaker.

Image source: Auspic

2016

Milestones

Details

 

2 February

Infants in the House

The Leader of the House of Representatives, Christopher Pyne (Lib., Sturt, SA) introduces the necessary changes to amend Standing Order 257 to allow infants to be brought into the House of Representatives Chamber and the Federation Chamber by members. In a media release Mr Pyne states that ‘No Member of Parliament, male or female, will ever again be prevented from participating fully in the law making processes of Parliament because they are also caring for their child.’[145] Previously, a member caring for a child during a division was able to cast a proxy vote, but not to bring the child into the chamber.

The amendment, which is passed,[146] implements a recommendation of the December 2015 report of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Procedure, Provisions for a more family-friendly Chamber.[147]

A similar change is made to the Senate’s standing orders in November 2016.

Larissa Waters moves a motion in the Senate while breastfeeding her baby

Larissa Waters moves a motion in the Senate while breastfeeding her baby (22 June 2017)

Image source: ParlView

2 February

First Member of the House to have an office on the Senate side of Parliament House

Trent Zimmerman (Lib., North Sydney, NSW), is sworn in, having won his seat in a December 2015 by-election (following the resignation of Joe Hockey), and becomes the first Member of the House of Representatives to have an office located on the Senate side of the building.[148] This is a temporary measure pending space becoming available in the House of Representatives wing.[149]

This unusual arrangement is the subject of questions from the Opposition during Senate Estimates hearings on 8 February. Correspondence from the Speaker of the House of Representatives to the President of the Senate on the matter is tabled during the hearings.

Subsequently, other members are also given temporary offices on the Senate side.

Trent Zimmerman

Trent Zimmerman

Image source: Auspic

8 February

‘Father of the House’ announces his retirement

Philip Ruddock (Lib., Berowra, NSW) announces his retirement from Parliament after a 42-year parliamentary career,[150] which included service as a Minister and a Shadow Minister. Mr Ruddock had been the ‘Father of the House’[151]—that is, the Member of the House of Representatives with the longest continuous service. William (Billy) Hughes (1862-1952) retains the record for the longest service—51 years, including serving as Prime Minister from 1915 to 1923.

Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop (Lib., Curtin, WA), announces Mr Ruddock’s appointment as Special Envoy for Human Rights.[152]

Philip Ruddock

Philip Ruddock

Image source: Auspic

22 February

Condolence motion for former Speaker Bob Halverson

The House pauses to acknowledge former Speaker Bob Halverson who died on 9 February 2016. He served as Speaker from 1996 to 1998.

In his condolence motion, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says:

Bob believed that the position of the Speaker had become too partisan and he sought to restore independence during his tenure ... As Speaker, Bob Halverson was the first to introduce legislation from the chair. The bill provided an arrangement we all benefit from—the establishment and administration of the Department of Parliamentary Services.[153]

Bob Halverson

Bob Halverson

Image source: Auspic

25 February

Defence White Paper released

The 2016 Defence White Paper is launched by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and the Minister for Defence, Senator Marise Payne (Lib., NSW). Work on the White Paper commenced in early 2014.[154]

The funding plan outlined in the White Paper raises Defence funding to two per cent of Gross Domestic Product by 2020–21.[155] For the first time, all elements of the Government’s defence investment are outlined in an Integrated Investment Program, published with the White Paper.[156] The White Paper also states that the Government will invest in 12 new submarines.[157]

Opposition defence spokesperson Stephen Conroy says the ALP is broadly supportive of the White Paper, but intends to closely scrutinise the funding commitment.[158]

Malcolm Turnbull, Marise Payne and Chief of the Navy Vice Admiral Tim Barrett

Malcolm Turnbull, Marise Payne and Chief of the Navy Vice Admiral Tim Barrett on 18 April 2016, announcing the location of ship building facilities for patrol vessels and frigates.

Image source: ParlView

3 March

Ministerial statement marking second anniversary of flight MH370 disappearance

The Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Darren Chester (Nat., Gippsland, Vic.), notes:

Tuesday, 8 March 2016 marks two years since the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 ... [which] disappeared with 239 people on board, including seven people who called Australia home, six of them Australian citizens. It is fitting today that we take time to remember the people on board and those who grieve for them ...

The Australian government is working systematically and intensively to locate the aircraft, together with our search partners, Malaysia and China ... Around 90,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far—of a total search area of 120,000 square kilometres ... As we search the remaining area, I remain hopeful the aircraft will be found.[159]

On 17 January 2017 the Malaysian, Australian and Chinese transport ministers jointly announce that the aircraft has not been located and the search has been suspended.[160]

In October 2017 the Malaysian Government enters into an agreement with US company Ocean Infinity to commence a new search, for which Australia, at Malaysia’s request, will provide technical assistance.[161]

Darren Chester

Darren Chester delivers a ministerial statement marking the second anniversary of the disappearance of flight MH370

Image source: ParlView

18 March

Passage of the Commonwealth Electoral Amendment Bill

The Commonwealth Electoral Amendment Bill 2016 passes both Houses. The Bill responds to parts of the interim and final reports of the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters Inquiry into the 2013 federal election, abolishing group voting tickets in the Senate and allowing optional preferential voting above the line. When the Bill was introduced in the House, standing orders were suspended to allow it to be introduced and passed despite the Bill having been referred to a committee for inquiry and no advisory report having been presented.[162]

After a total of 39 hours of debate in the Senate (at multiple sittings),[163] the Bill passes with the support of the Australian Greens.[164] The sitting of the Senate on 17–18 March to finalise the Bill lasts for 28 hours and 56 minutes and ‘appears to be unique in the Senate’s history in being a continuous sitting without breaks of any kind’ (although not the longest debate on a single Bill).[165]

A subsequent High Court challenge to the validity of the legislation brought by Senator Bob Day (FFP, SA) and others, is dismissed by the Court on 13 May 2016.[166]

Victorian senate ballot paper 2016

Victorian senate ballot paper 2016

Image source: Hshook, Wikimedia Commons

18 March

Passage of the Territories Legislation Amendment Bill

The Territories Legislation Amendment Bill 2016 passes both Houses. The Bill (among other provisions) amends other legislation to extend all Commonwealth laws to Norfolk Island, unless expressly provided otherwise; and requires eligible Norfolk Island residents to enrol and vote in federal elections.[167]

The changes follow reforms to Norfolk Island’s governance in 2015 which abolished the Norfolk Island Legislative Assembly, replacing it with an Advisory Council, to transition to an elected Regional Council from July 2016.[168]

In April, former Norfolk Island Chief Minister Lisle Snell called for a royal commission into what he referred to as the ‘Australian takeover’ of Norfolk Island, and human rights lawyer Geoffrey Robertson delivered a petition against the perceived takeover signed by Norfolk Islanders to the United Nations in New York.[169]

Norfolk Island

Norfolk Island

Image source: Steve Daggar, Wikimedia Commons

21 March

Request to prorogue Parliament

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull writes to the Governor‑General, Peter Cosgrove, requesting that Parliament be prorogued on Friday 15 April and summoned to sit again on Monday 18 April.[170] The request, made under section 5 of the Constitution (which enables the Governor‑General to prorogue the Parliament) is agreed to and proclaimed by the Governor-General.[171]

The Prime Minister states that Parliament is being prorogued and then recalled in order to consider two sets of legislation:

The Prime Minister’s letter to the Governor-General

The Prime Minister’s letter to the Governor-General

Image source: Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia

15 April

Parliament is prorogued

Proroguing a Parliament, in effect, terminates the current session of Parliament without dissolving either House, and therefore without requiring an election.[173] As a result of prorogation, all business on the Senate and House notice papers lapses.[174]

Although in recent times it has been unusual to prorogue the Parliament, it was more common in the 1960s and earlier.[175] Until 1925 ‘Parliament was prorogued before a dissolution of the House of Representatives and once or twice each Parliament, but, after 1925, for reasons unknown, the practice of proroguing before a dissolution was discontinued and not restored until 1993’.[176] Parliament was last prorogued and then recalled before an election in 1977 to allow the Queen to open Parliament.[177]

Proroguing the Parliament with the express aim of recalling the Senate to consider legislation is unusual.[178] The successful prorogation sets the stage for the possibility of a double dissolution election.

 

18 April

Parliament resumes after prorogation

Following the prorogation of Parliament on 15 April Parliament is opened by the Governor-General, Sir Peter Cosgrove, for a new session. In his speech opening the new session of parliament, he says:

The cause for which I have recalled the Parliament is to enable it and, in particular, the Senate to give full and timely consideration to two important parcels of industrial legislation—the Bills to provide for the re-establishment of the Australian Building and Construction Commission, and the Bill to improve the governance and transparency of registered organisations. These Bills are critical to my Government’s reform agenda.[179]

The Senate receives a message from the House of Representatives requesting that the Senate resume consideration of the Building and Construction Industry Bills.[180] The Senate complies and the legislation is defeated a second time.[181] This action sets in motion the process for a double dissolution election by providing a double dissolution ‘trigger’.[182]

Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove

Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove opens the 2nd Session of the 44th Parliament

Image source: ParlView

Watch: Opening of the 2nd Session of the 44th Parliament (ParlView)

19 April

Prime Minister announces likely date of double dissolution election

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull states that he intends to advise the Governor-General to dissolve both houses of parliament under powers provided by section 57 of the Constitution.[183] Mr Turnbull says he expects a federal election will be held on 2 July.[184]

Malcolm Turnbull

Malcolm Turnbull

Image source: Auspic

2 May

Supply Bills introduced

Peter Hendy (Lib., Eden-Monaro, NSW), the Assistant Cabinet Secretary and Assistant Minister for Finance, introduces supply Bills into the House.[185] Supply Bills seek appropriations to facilitate the continuation of normal government business. They were common between Federation and 1993 but, since then, governments have ‘generally delivered the Budget and tabled the annual Appropriation Bills in May, prior to the commencement of the next financial year’, thereby negating the need for supply Bills.[186]

The passage of the supply Bills on 3 May allows the government to fund ordinary services during the (anticipated) election period, before the 2016–17 Budget Bills are considered and passed by the new Parliament.[187] The appropriation Bills are passed by both Houses on 7 November.[188]

 

4 May

Former member found guilty of contempt and reprimanded by the House

The House of Representatives passes a motion finding Craig Thomson, the former member for Dobell, guilty of contempt and reprimanding him.[189] The motion follows the report of the Committee of Privileges and Members’ Interests presented on 17 March 2016 which recommended that the House find Mr Thomson guilty of contempt in relation to his statement on 21 May 2012 and the findings made against him by the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on 18 February 2014.[190]

Craig Thomson

Craig Thomson

Image source: Auspic

8 May

Governor-General accepts request to dissolve both Houses

The Prime Minister announces the Governor‑General has accepted his request under section 57 of the Constitution to dissolve both houses of Parliament effective 9 May 2016, and to call a double dissolution election for both Houses for 2 July 2016.[191] The announcement follows the Senate’s rejection of the Building and Construction Industry Bills on 18 April 2016.[192]

The 2016 federal election will be the seventh time Australia has had a double dissolution election. Double dissolution elections were also held in 1914, 1951, 1974, 1975, 1983 and 1987,[193] making the 2016 election the first in almost thirty years.

 

9 May

Dissolution of both Houses

Both houses of Parliament are dissolved by proclamation of the Governor-General. The Official Secretary to the Governor-General, Mark Fraser, reads the proclamation in front of Parliament House. The signed proclamation is then displayed inside the building.

9 May is also the anniversary of the opening of the first Federal Parliament in 1901, as well as the opening of the provisional and new parliamentary buildings in 1927 and 1988.[194]

Watch: Simultaneous Dissolution of the Senate and the House of Representatives

Source: ParlView

9 May

Retirements and departures

The dissolution of both Houses marks the departure of 23 members and four senators who are not contesting the upcoming election. Between them, the departing parliamentarians have over 450 years of parliamentary experience,[195] with many having served as Ministers. They include the second longest-serving MP in Australian parliamentary history, Philip Ruddock (Lib., Berowra, NSW), and the longest-serving female parliamentarian in Australian parliamentary history, Bronwyn Bishop (Lib., Mackellar, NSW). Mr Ruddock retires with over 42 years of parliamentary service (second only to Billy Hughes’ record of 51 years), while Mrs Bishop has served for 28 years (across both Houses).

Bronwyn Bishop

Bronwyn Bishop

Image source: Auspic

16 May

Death of Romaldo Giurgola

Romaldo (Aldo) Giurgola, the architect of Australia’s Parliament House, dies at age 95. As senior partner of Mitchell/Giurgola & Thorp Architects, Mr Giurgola was the principal design architect for the building from its inception until 1999.

In a media release, the Presiding Officers:

... acknowledge Mr Giurgola not only as an exceptional architect of Parliament House but one who, along with a great team of architects, helped to make the Australian Parliament House the iconic symbol of democracy that it has become.[196]

A celebration of Mr Giurgola’s life and his contribution to architecture is held in the Great Hall of Parliament House in August.[197] An exhibition in the Marble Foyer in November and December also celebrates Mr Giurgola and his achievements.

 

2 July

Election Day

The 2016 federal election is held. The election is the first to be conducted under the new optional preferential voting system for the Senate.[198]

The close result means that no party claims victory until 10 July, when Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull declares ‘We have won the election’ and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten concedes defeat.[199]

The Australian Electoral Commission returns the writs for the election on 8 August. Ultimately, the Coalition is returned with 76 seats, a slim majority of one in the House of Representatives, and faces an enlarged crossbench in the Senate—with 20 members it is the largest since Federation.[200] The election also sees the return of Pauline Hanson’s One Nation, which gains four Senate seats including a Queensland Senate seat for Pauline Hanson herself.[201]

In the House, there are five crossbenchers, including Rebekha Sharkie (Mayo, SA), the first member of the Nick Xenophon Team to be elected to the lower house.[202] A majority of crossbenchers in the House agree to support the government on matters of supply and confidence.[203] The 45th Parliament includes 39 new members of the House of Representatives and 14 new senators.[204]

One of the new members, Linda Burney (ALP, Barton, NSW), becomes the first Indigenous woman elected to the House of Representatives.[205] Anne Aly (ALP, Cowan, WA) becomes the first Muslim woman elected to the federal parliament.[206]

Ballot box

Image source: Dude7248 (Own workown), Wikimedia Commons

12 July

Parliament House lawns vandalised

The lawns on the House of Representatives side of Parliament House are damaged by vandals who used chemicals to write political messages on the grass. The Department of Parliamentary Services immediately commences restoration work on the lawns.[207] The messages appeared to include references to ‘hemp’.[208]

Parliament House lawns

Parliament House lawns (undamaged)

Image source: Wilson Afonso, flickr

30 August

Opening and composition of the 45th Parliament

The opening of the 45th Parliament begins with a Welcome to Country address by Ngunnawal elder Tina Brown and a smoking ceremony. Next, the 45th Parliament is officially opened by the Governor-General, Sir Peter Cosgrove. In his speech, the Governor-General outlines the Government’s agenda for the 45th Parliament.

At the commencement of the 45th Parliament, the House of Representatives comprises: 76 Coalition members; 69 ALP members; two Independents; one Australian Greens member; one Katter’s Australian Party member; and one member of the Nick Xenophon Team.[209] The Senate comprises: 30 Coalition senators, 26 ALP senators; nine Australian Greens senators; and 11 minor party senators.[210]

The number of women in Parliament has risen from 69 (31 per cent) in the 44th Parliament to 73 (32 per cent) in the 45th Parliament.[211] For the first time at the commencement of a Parliament, all major parties have a female leader or deputy leader.[212]

One of the first orders of business for the new Parliament is the election of the Presiding Officers. The Speaker of the House,[213] Tony Smith, and the President of the Senate, Stephen Parry, are both re-elected unopposed.[214] In keeping with tradition, the Speaker is symbolically dragged to the chair by colleagues.[215]

Tina Brown gives the Welcome to Country address

Tina Brown gives the Welcome to Country address

Image source: ParlView

Sir Peter Cosgrove inspects the Guard 

Sir Peter Cosgrove inspects the Guard

Image source: Auspic

Watch: The opening of the 45th Parliament

Tony Smith is dragged to the Speaker’s chair by colleagues Michael Sukkar and Lucy Wicks

Tony Smith is dragged to the Speaker’s chair by colleagues Michael Sukkar and Lucy Wicks

Image source: ParlView

31 August

Rotation of senators

Section 13 of the Constitution states that, following a double dissolution election, the Senate must decide which senators will serve a full six-year term, and which will serve a three-year term and face election at the next federal election. At each federal election, other than a double dissolution election, half of the State senators are elected on a rotating basis for a six-year term. Territory senators, however, must face re-election at each federal election.

The Senate resolves the issue on its second sitting day.[216] Senator Mitch Fifield (Lib., Vic.) moves:

That, pursuant to section 13 of the Constitution, the senators chosen for each state be divided into two classes, as follows:

Senators listed at positions 7 to 12 on the certificate of election of senators for each state shall be allocated to the first class and receive 3 year terms.

Senators listed at positions 1 to 6 on the certificate of election of senators for each state shall be allocated to the second class and receive 6 year terms.[217]

The motion is passed by 50 votes to 15, with Coalition and ALP senators voting in favour and those voting against including Senators Day, Hinch, Leyonhjelm and the Nick Xenophon Team and Australian Greens senators.[218]

Senate chamber

Senate chamber

Watch: Motion on the rotation of Senators

Source: ParlView

31 August

First speech by the first Indigenous woman to be elected to the House of Representatives

Linda Burney (ALP, Barton, NSW), the first Indigenous woman to be elected to the House of Representatives, is sung into the Parliament by her Wiradjuri sister Lynette Riley, before making her first speech.[219] In her speech, she speaks briefly in the Wiradjuri language.[220]

Ms Burney previously served in the New South Wales (NSW) Parliament, becoming the first Indigenous member of that Parliament upon her election in 2003.[221] In 2007 she became the first Indigenous person to serve as a minister in the NSW Parliament.

Linda Burney

Linda Burney

Image source: Auspic

Watch: Linda Burney’s first speech

Source: ParlView

31 August

Building and Construction Bills and Budget Bills reintroduced

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull re-introduces the Bills that triggered the double dissolution election: the Building and Construction Industry (Improving Productivity) Bill 2013, the Building and Construction Industry (Consequential and Transitional Provisions) Bill 2013 (ABCC Bills), and the Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Amendment Bill 2014.[222] The Budget Savings Omnibus Bill 2016 is introduced by the Treasurer on the same day.[223]

 

1 September

Government loses votes on the floor of the House of Representatives

The Coalition Government loses three votes on the floor of the House of Representatives: a motion to adjourn; a motion on the closure of debate; and an amendment requiring the House to consider a message (concerning the establishment of a banking royal commission) from the Senate immediately.[224] The votes were lost because a number of Coalition members were absent from the House, some reportedly having left to fly home to their electorates.[225]

All of the lost votes were on procedural matters. In the third vote, the Speaker, Tony Smith, uses his casting vote to decide the matter, noting:

... the principles regarding a casting vote by the Speaker are outlined in House of Representatives Practice—specifically on page 183—and they include that the Speaker should vote to allow further discussion where this is possible.[226]

The last time a majority government lost a division in the House was in 1962.[227]

The House of Representatives Practice notes that ‘[a]lthough it has been claimed that the loss of control of the business of the House is a matter over which Governments should resign, the loss of a vote on such an issue is not necessarily fatal for a Government’.[228]

Tony Smith, Speaker of the House of Representatives

Tony Smith, Speaker of the House of Representatives

Image source: Auspic

12 September

30 millionth visitor to Parliament House

On or around this date, Parliament House welcomes its 30 millionth visitor since its opening in 1988.[229]

In the 2015–16 financial year, 725,992 people visited Parliament House.[230]

Parliament House on its opening day in 1988

Parliament House on its opening day in 1988

Image courtesy of National Archives of Australia

13 September

Electronic petitions in the House

The Speaker informs the House that an electronic petitions (e‑petitions) website and system have been developed for the House.[231] The system will allow members of the public to enter and sign petitions online and to track their progress. It becomes available later in September.[232] Later that day the House amends its standing orders to enable e-petitions.

 

14 September

Introduction of Plebiscite (Same-Sex Marriage) Bill 2016

The Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, introduces the Plebiscite (Same-Sex Marriage) Bill 2016 into the House. In his second reading speech he says:

I present to the House today the commitment that we made in the election campaign to put the question of whether same-sex couples will be allowed to marry under Australian law to the Australian people in a plebiscite ... I ask the opposition today, I ask the Leader of the Opposition today, to support this plebiscite.[233]

The Bill is rejected by the Senate on 7 November.[234]

 

15 September

Dr Rosemary Laing to retire as Clerk of the Senate

Dr Rosemary Laing, the Clerk of the Senate, annouces her forthcoming retirement. Dr Laing has worked for the Senate for 26 years, serving as Clerk since 2009.[235]

Rosemary Laing

Rosemary Laing

Image source: Auspic

10 October

Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry—Lionel Murphy

The President of the Senate, Stephen Parry, and the Speaker of the House, Tony Smith, make statements in their respective Houses regarding the release of documents from the 1986 Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry into the conduct of Justice Lionel Murphy (a former senator). The Commission’s role was to determine whether Justice Murphy’s conduct constituted misbehaviour under section 72 of the Constitution.[236] The inquiry was discontinued in August 1986 when Justice Murphy became terminally ill, and legislation was passed which gave the presiding officers exclusive possession of the documents of the Commission for 30 years from its commencement.[237]

Following the expiration of the 30-year period on 26 September 2016, the presiding officers advise that they:

... have determined that the Clerks of the Senate and the House of Representatives and other nominees approved by us can access and examine the records of the commission for the purposes of providing advice to assist in our responses to requests for access ... We are awaiting advice on the contents of the records before determining any arrangements for wider access to them.[238]

The class B records are made available on the Australian Parliament House website on 19 December 2016, while the class A records will be tabled in both houses on 14 September 2017.[239]

Lionel Murphy in 1973

Lionel Murphy in 1973

Image source: Rob Mieremet/Anefo, Wikimedia Commons

12 October

Prime Minister of Singapore addresses the Parliament

The Prime Minister of Singapore, Mr Lee Hsien Loong, addresses the Parliament—the first time a Singaporean Prime Minister has done so. In his address, Prime Minister Lee says:

I am honoured to address you in this Parliament House today. I am also very happy that with a comprehensive strategic partnership, the CSP, Singapore's relationship with Australia has reached another significant milestone.[240]

In a press conference the following day with Prime Minister Lee, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says that the CSP ‘is the most comprehensive upgrade and update to an Australian free trade agreement to date’.[241]

Lee Hsien Loong

Lee Hsien Loong

Image source: ParlView

Watch: Address by the Prime Minister of Singapore, Mr Lee Hsien Loong, to Senators and Members

Source: ParlView

13 October

Senate photography ban lifted

A motion to lift restrictions on photography in the Senate chamber, moved by Senator Derryn Hinch (DHCP, Vic.), is passed by the Senate,[242] bringing it into line with the media rules operating in the House of Representatives chamber.[243]

The Senate photography restrictions have been in place since 2002 and their removal follows an extended campaign by photographers and media organisations. [244]

Derryn Hinch

Derryn Hinch moves a motion to lift restrictions on photography in the Senate chamber

Image source: ParlView

2 November

Visit by King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands

The King and Queen of the Netherlands visit Parliament House as part of a state visit to Australia from 31 October to 4 November. Their Majesties are accompanied by the Dutch Ministers for Foreign Affairs, Trade and Economic Affairs, and a commercial delegation.[245] The state visit, their first to Australia, coincides with commemorative activities marking the occasion of the 400th anniversary of the landing in Western Australia of Dutch explorer Dirk Hartog.[246]

King Willem-Alexander

King Willem-Alexander

Image source: Royal House of the Netherlands, Wikimedia Commons

7 November

Senate refers Day and Culleton matters to the High Court

Under section 376 of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918, the Senate refers two matters to the High Court sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns.[247] Both matters involve the qualification of senators under section 44 of the Constitution. The first involves a possible pecuniary conflict of interest relating to the lease for an electoral office for former Senator Day (FFP, SA). The second matter relates to Senator Culleton (PHON, WA) and his conviction for larceny which was subsequently annulled, but had stood throughout the election period.

Read: Related documents

7 November

Ceremony commemorating members of the House of Representatives who died in office

A private rose planting ceremony is held in the Parliament House gardens in memory of the three members of the House of Representatives who died while serving in office since the building opened in 1988—Greg Wilton (2000), Peter Nugent (2001) and Don Randall (2015).

 

8 November

Infants in the Senate

The Senate adopts a recommendation of the Procedure Committee’s First report of 2016,[248] amending the Standing Orders to allow in the chamber an infant being breastfed or ‘briefly cared for’ by a senator, ‘provided the business of the Senate is not disrupted’.[249] The amendment was proposed by Larissa Waters (AG, Qld).

The amendment follows similar changes implemented in the House on 2 February 2016 (see entry for that date).

Since 2003, Senate standing orders (175.3) had permitted a senator to bring an infant into the chamber while breastfeeding, but not at other times.[250]

 

21 November

Nationals senators cross the floor over shotgun ban

Two Nationals senators, Bridget McKenzie (Vic.) and John Williams (NSW) cross the floor to support a motion by crossbench senator David Leyonhjelm aiming to lift a ban on the importation of the Adler shotgun.[251] Other Nationals senators abstain.[252] The motion is defeated, 45 votes to seven.[253]

Bridget McKenzie

Bridget McKenzie

Image source: ParlView

Watch: ParlView

22 November

Visit by the King and Queen of Jordan

King Abdullah Il Ibn Al Hussein and Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan visit Parliament House as part of a state visit to Australia. During the visit, His Majesty and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull sign a Joint Declaration on Enhanced Cooperation to elevate bilateral cooperation between Australia and Jordan.[254]

King Abdullah of Jordan and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull

King Abdullah of Jordan and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull

Image source: ParlView

Watch: Press conference – Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and King Abdullah of Jordan

29 November

New Clerk of the Senate announced

The President of the Senate, Stephen Parry, announces that Richard Pye, the Deputy Clerk of the Senate, will replace Dr Rosemary Laing as Clerk of the Senate upon her retirement in March 2017.[255]

Under the Parliamentary Service Act 1999 (Cth) the term of appointment for the Clerk of the Senate (and for the Clerk of the House of Representatives) is 10 years.

Richard Pye

Richard Pye

Image source: Auspic

30 November

House of Representatives Question Time suspended due to protest

Around fifty people protesting against the Government’s treatment of asylum seekers disrupt Question Time from the public gallery of the House of Representatives. The Speaker, Tony Smith, suspends Question Time while the protestors, some of whom superglued their hands to railings, are removed by security staff.[256]

Seven of the protesters face trial in July 2017, pleading not guilty to damaging Commonwealth property.[257]

The following day, some of the protesters return to Parliament House, with two abseiling down the front of a building and others dyeing the water feature in the building’s forecourt red.[258]

Protesters abseil down the front of Parliament House

Protesters abseil down the front of Parliament House on 1 December 2016

Image source: A Hough

Watch: ParlView

1 December

Security changes at Parliament House approved by both Houses

The House and the Senate approve proposed perimeter security enhancements at Parliament House, which will include additional fencing. The Speaker advises the House:

All enhancements, those already completed and those being proposed today, are the result of advice from our security agencies and are based on many months of consideration.[259]

In the Senate, the changes are opposed by the Australian Greens and by Senator Derryn Hinch (DHJP, Vic.).

Senator Hinch states:

... I think what you are planning is like putting barbed wire on the Opera House. This is an aesthetic building; it is the people's building.[260]

The 2.6-metre high fence will form a new external perimeter for the building’s southern and northern grassed ramps.[261]

 

2017

Milestones

Details

Source Documents

18 January

Ministerial changes; first Indigenous federal minister

Changes to the ministry are announced by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. [262] They include the elevation of Ken Wyatt (Lib., Hasluck, WA) to the role of Minister for Aged Care and Indigenous Health, making him Australia’s first Indigenous federal minister.[263]

Ken Wyatt

Ken Wyatt

Image source: Auspic

3 February

Rodney Culleton ruled ineligible by the High Court

The High Court rules that Senator Rod Culleton was incapable of being chosen or of sitting as senator by reason of section 44(ii) of the Constitution. The resulting vacancy is to be filled by a special count of the ballot papers.[264]

Rodney Culleton

Rodney Culleton

Image source: Auspic

7 February

50th anniversary of Black Tuesday bushfires

The House and the Senate (on 8 February) commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Black Tuesday bushfires in Tasmania, in which 64 people died. [265] The fires were the deadliest in Tasmania’s history.[266]

Watch:

Andrew Wilkie’s statement

Senator Lisa Singh’s motion

Source: ParlView

14 February

Visit by Prime Minister of Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe visits Australia from 13–17 February to mark the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries. At a reception at Parliament House, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says:

We are delighted that we are hosting you as we celebrate the strong bond between our two nations. A bond that has endured and grown stronger over 70 years ...

Today, we are working together to ensure the prosperity and security of our region, on issues from trade to law enforcement, from science to combatting the scourge of people smuggling.[267]

Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe signs the visitors’ book at Parliament House
Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe signs the visitors’ book at Parliament House

Image source: Michael Masters, Auspic

16 February

Changes to parliamentary entitlements

The Parliamentary Entitlements Legislation Amendment Bill 2017 passes both Houses.[268] The Bill ends access to the Life Gold Pass scheme from its commencement (with the exception of former Prime Ministers and their spouses or partners), while reducing the entitlement for current and former members.[269] The Bill also introduces penalty loadings when a claim is made in excess of entitlement.[270]

The following day, the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority Bill 2017 is passed.[271] The Bill establishes:

... the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority as an independent statutory body with responsibilities relating to the work expenses of parliamentarians and their staff, ensuring that taxpayers’ funds are spent appropriately and in compliance with the rules.[272]

On 11 May 2017, the passage of the Parliamentary Business Resources Bill 2017 establishes ‘a new framework for the remuneration, business resources and travel resources for current and former members of the federal Parliament.’[273]

 

2 March

Official Observer exhibition opens

The Official Observer exhibition showcases images by David Foote—the official photographer for the Australian Government Photographic Service, Auspic—taken over the past 25 years. David Foote has been photographing Australian prime ministers from Bob Hawke onwards, including their overseas travels and interactions with world leaders.

Parliament House flagpole

Image source: Auspic

20 March

Forecourt to be upgraded

The Department of Parliamentary Services seeks tenders for upgrades to the Parliament House forecourt.[274] The forecourt, which is showing ‘signs of wear and tear’, will receive a three-year, $29 million upgrade.[275] Improvements will be made to the pond, the public carpark, and emergency generators.[276] The project is expected to begin in August 2017 and be completed in April 2020.[277]

Artwork leading to the entrance of Parliament House
Image source: Neale Cousland/Shutterstock.com

23–24 March

Visit by China’s Premier

China’s Premier Li Keqiang visits Parliament House. It is his first visit as Premier and the visit marks the 45th year of diplomatic relations between the two countries.[278] During this visit, the two governments sign, inter alia, an MOU on vocational education and training and an agreement enabling better access to the Chinese market for Australian meat producers and exporters.[279]

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull

Image source: ParlView

Watch: Joint Signing and Media Conference

Source: ParlView

25 March

Beehives at Parliament House

Three beehives are installed in bushland on the grounds of Parliament House.[280] The hives are part of an effort to arrest the decline of bee populations—bees are crucial to Australia’s food security, agriculture and environmental sustainability.[281]

Parliament House’s honey will win second prize at the 2018 Royal Canberra Show.[282]

It is not the first time there have been beehives at Australia’s Parliament. In 1976, William Yates, a Victorian member of parliament, installed two hives in the House of Representatives garden at what is now Old Parliament House.[283]

Close up shot of a bee
Image source: Eric Isselee/Shutterstock.com

28 March

China extradition treaty ratification repealed

Following a decision of the Opposition not to support ratification of an extradition treaty with China,[284] the Government announces that it will repeal the ratification regulation rather than have it defeated in the Senate.[285]

 

5 April

Bob Day ruled ineligible by the High Court

The High Court rules that former Senator Bob Day, who resigned in November 2016, was incapable of being chosen or of sitting as a senator by reason on section 44(v) of the Constitution.[286] The resulting vacancy is to be filled by a special recount of ballot papers.

Bob Day 

Bob Day

Image source: Auspic

9 May

First baby breastfed in Australia’s parliament

Larissa Waters (AG, Qld) breastfeeds her daughter in the Senate chamber. It is the first time a baby has been breastfed in the Australian parliament.[287] Senator Waters later posts on Twitter:

So proud that my daughter Alia is the first baby to be breastfed in the federal Parliament! We need more women and parents in Parli[ament].[288]

The Senate Standing Orders were changed in May 2003 to permit a breastfeeding infant in the chamber, and again in November 2016 to permit infants being cared for in the chamber.

The House of Representatives amended its Standing Orders in February 2016 to permit infants being cared for in the chamber.

Larissa Waters moves a motion in the Senate while breastfeeding her baby

Larissa Waters moves a motion in the Senate while breastfeeding her baby (22 June 2017)

Image source: ParlView

9 May

Despatch box 90th anniversary

The 9th of May marks the 90th anniversary of the opening of the provisional parliament building, now referred to as Old Parliament House, in Canberra in 1927. On that day the Duke of York (later King George VI) presented two rosewood despatch boxes as gifts to the new parliament.[289] The despatch boxes sit on each side of the table between the government and opposition benches in the House of Representatives chamber, and have been in continuous use since 1927.[290]

Despatch box

Despatch box

Image source: Auspic

24–26 May

Visit of Sri Lanka’s President, H.E. Hon. Maithripala Sirisena

The President of Sri Lanka, Maithripala Sirisena, visits Parliament House for discussions on security and defence—the first bilateral visit by a Sri Lankan head of State.

To mark the visit, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and Sri Lankan Deputy Foreign Minister Harsha de Silva sign a Joint Declaration on Enhanced Cooperation. The two governments also sign an MoU on Chronic Kidney Disease research and a Letter of Intent on geoscience.[291]

President Sirisena greets Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at Parliament House
President Sirisena greets Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at Parliament House

Image source: Auspic

27 May–3 June

National Reconciliation Week

National Reconciliation Week 2017 marks the 25th anniversary of the Mabo Decision and the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Referendum.

As part of National Reconciliation Week, the exhibition Prevailing Voices–Indigenous Australian Parliamentarians opens at Parliament House. The exhibition aims to recognise and celebrate the contribution of Indigenous parliamentarians to the Australian Parliament.[292] A portrait of Ken Wyatt (Lib., Hasluck, WA), the first Indigenous member of the House of Representatives and the first Indigenous federal minister, is unveiled at the opening.[293]

Opening of the Prevailing Voices exhibition

Opening of the Prevailing Voices exhibition

Image source: Auspic

12 July

Parliament House protesters appear in court

On 30 November 2016, Speaker Tony Smith suspended Question Time in response to disruptions caused by people in the public gallery noisily protesting the Government’s treatment of asylum seekers.[294]

On 12 July 2017, seven people are charged with intentionally damaging Commonwealth property ‘after they allegedly superglued their hands’ to railings in the House of Representatives gallery and committed for trial.[295] The matter is heard in the ACT supreme court in 2018, with the protesters found not guilty.[296]

 

14 and 18 July

Senators Ludlam and Waters resign from Parliament due to dual citizenship

On 14 July, Scott Ludlam resigns from the Senate, having discovered that he holds dual Australian and New Zealand citizenship.[297]

His colleague Senator Larissa Waters resigns on 18 July, having discovered she is a Canadian citizen.[298]

Section 44 of the Australian Constitution disqualifies people from being ‘chosen’ or sitting in the Parliament on a number of grounds, including being ‘a subject or a citizen or entitled to the rights or privileges of a subject or a citizen of a foreign power’ (s. 44i). ‘Its purpose is to ensure that people elected to Parliament are beholden to no-one but the electors as a whole and may therefore perform their duties free from undue external influence’,[299] avoiding both actual and perceived conflicts of interest.

Green’s leader Senator Richard di Natale commits the party to ‘an urgent root-and-branch review’ of its processes ‘to prevent this from happening again’.[300]

 

22 July

Retirement of inaugural Parliamentary Budget Officer

Phil Bowen retires as Parliamentary Budget Officer on 22 July 2017, having held office since 2012.

On 19 June 2017, the President and the Speaker advise their respective Houses that Jenny Wilkinson has been appointed as the next Parliamentary Budget Officer.[301]

Ms Wilkinson commences in the role on 24 July.

Ms Jenny Wilkinson, Parliamentary Budget Officer

Ms Jenny Wilkinson, Parliamentary Budget Officer

Image source: Auspic

25 July

Senator Canavan resigns from the ministry

Queensland Senator Matt Canavan steps down from the ministry due to possible Italian citizenship.[302]

Unlike former Senators Ludlam and Waters who acquired dual citizenship by birth, Senator Canavan’s circumstances involve citizenship by descent, a matter on which the High Court has not previously ruled.[303]

Attorney General George Brandis states that it ‘is the Government’s preliminary view’ that, because Senator Canavan’s mother registered him as an Italian resident abroad ‘without his knowledge or consent, that he is not in breach of s. 44 of the Constitution’.[304]

Matt Canavan

Matt Canavan

Image source: Auspic

8 and 9 August

Four senators referred to the Court of Disputed Returns

On 8 August, President Stephen Parry tables the resignation letters of Greens Senators Ludlam and Waters.[305]

The Senate refers the matters of Ludlam, Waters and Canavan to the High Court to determine ‘whether by reason of s 44(i) of the Constitution there is a vacancy in the representation’ of Western Australia and Queensland in the Senate, and if so, ‘by what means and in what manner that vacancy should be filled’.[306] (Should a person returned as a senator or member be later found to be ineligible, then there is not a casual vacancy but rather an invalid election which must be completed.)[307]

Also on 8 August, Senator Richard Di Natale gives notice of a motion to refer Senator Malcolm Roberts to the Court of Disputed Returns[308] following controversy regarding his possible British citizenship.[309] The following day, the Senate refers Senator Roberts to the High Court on the motion of his party leader, Senator Pauline Hanson.[310]

 

8 August

Parliament marks the Deaths of Dr G. Yunupingu and Kunmanara Lester

Before Question time the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition rise, on indulgence, to acknowledge the deaths of Dr G. Yunupingu and Kunmanara Lester. The Senate records its condolences on the deaths of both men on 17 August.[311]

Watch the condolence statements on the deaths of Dr G. Yunupingu and Kunmanara Lester in the House of Representatives and the Senate

8 August

‘The House’ television series

The House, a six part light entertainment series exploring the operations of Australian Parliament House, debuts on ABC TV. The series is inspired by the BBC program Inside the Commons. A highlight of the show is drone footage shot in, over and around the building.

A drone flying past artwork in Members Hall

A drone flying past artwork in Members Hall

Image source: Australian Broadcasting Corporation Library

9 August

Same-sex marriage plebiscite becomes a postal survey

Following the defeat of the Government’s motion to restore the Plebiscite (Same-Sex Marriage) Bill 2016 to the Senate Notice Paper,[312] the Government announces its intension to press ‘ahead with a voluntary postal plebiscite for all Australians’.[313] Treasurer Scott Morrison issues a Direction to the Australian Statistician asking the ABS to conduct the survey.[314] Funding of $122 million is made available.[315]

The collection period for the Postal Survey opens on 12 September and continues until 7 November.

 

10 August–7 September

High Court Challenge to the same-sex marriage postal survey

The member for Dension Andrew Wilkie announces a High Court application to stop the voluntary postal survey on grounds that the Government has no power to order the ABS to conduct it or to appropriate funds to pay for it.[316]

Australian Marriage Equality co-chair, Alex Greenwich, also seeks an injunction to stop the postal survey,[317] with Greens Senator Janet Rice a joint plaintiff.

On 7 September, the High Court unanimously dismisses both challenges as being ‘demonstrably without substance’, publishing its reasons on 28 September.[318] Such is the interest in the outcome that the High Court’s website crashes minutes before the announcement.[319]

Andrew Wilkie

Andrew Wilkie

Image source: Auspic

14 August

State visit by the Solomon Islands Prime Minister

The Honourable Mr Manasseh Damukana Sogavare MP, Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands, visits the Parliament on 14 August as part of a guest of government visit to Australia.

The 14 year Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI) to restore stability and economic growth ended on 30 June 2017. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull pays tribute to those involved in the Mission.[320]

During the visit, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and Solomon Islands Foreign Minister Tozaka sign a new security treaty to enable rapid deployment of Australian police, armed forces and civilian personnel to the Solomon Islands, should need arise and where both countries consent. The Department of Foreign Affairs notes that ‘this will be Australia’s first bilateral security treaty in the Pacific.[321]

The Honourable Mr Manasseh Damukana Sogavare MP at Parliament House

The Honourable Mr Manasseh Damukana Sogavare MP at Parliament House

Image source: Auspic

Watch the arrival of the Solomon Islands Prime Minister at Parliament House

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop meeting Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop meeting Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare

Image source: DFAT

14 August

Barnaby Joyce citizenship issue

Deputy Prime Minister and Nationals Leader Barnaby Joyce informs the House that the New Zealand High Commission has contacted him to advise he may be a ‘citizen by descent of New Zealand’. He goes on to state that, on the basis of legal advice from the Solicitor-General,

the Prime Minister has asked that I remain Deputy Prime Minister and continue my ministerial duties.[322]

The House refers Mr Joyce to the Court of Disputed Returns later that day.[323] The issue of his eligibility is of particular significance given the Turnbull Government holds a one seat majority in the House.[324]

The Opposition is critical that Mr Joyce has not stepped down from the ministry while the issue is resolved.[325]

During a doorstop interview at Parliament House, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop accuses the Labor party of ‘seeking to use the New Zealand Parliament to undermine the Australian Government’ and states

New Zealand is facing an election. Should there be a change of Government, I would find it very hard to build trust with those involved in allegations designed to undermine the Government of Australia.[326]

Barnaby Joyce

Barnaby Joyce

Image source: Auspic

16 August

Visit by the President of the Republic of Croatia

Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic visits Parliament House during her trip to Australia, the first by a Croatian head of State since 1995.[327]

2017 marks the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

(l-r) Tony Smith (Speaker of the House of Representatives), Her Excellency, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, and Stephen Parry (President of the Senate) at Parliament House

(l-r) Tony Smith (Speaker of the House of Representatives), Her Excellency, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, and Stephen Parry (President of the Senate) at Parliament House

Image source: Auspic

17 August

Senator wears a burqa to Question Time

Queensland Senator Pauline Hanson causes consternation by wearing a burqa to Question Time,[328] removing it as she rises to ask the Attorney-General whether he would work to ban such garb in Australia.[329]

Pauline Hanson wears a burqa into Question Time

Pauline Hanson wears a burqa into Question Time

Pauline Hanson wears a burqa into Question Time

Image source: Auspic

17 August

Nationals Senator Fiona Nash declares possible dual citizenship

NSW Senator Fiona Nash announces that she may be a British citizen by descent, but will not be standing aside from her ministerial or party responsibilities.[330]

Senator Nash is referred to the Court of Disputed Returns when Parliament resumes on 4 September,[331] with the Attorney-General informing the Senate that ‘the government is of the view that Senator Nash is not ineligible to sit and was not incapable of being chosen’.[332]

The Opposition expresses ‘grave concerns that the minister is refusing to follow the lead of her colleague, Senator Canavan, and standing aside as a minister’.[333]

Fiona Nash addresses the Senate

Fiona Nash addresses the Senate

Image source: Auspic

17 August

Meeting Place: Michael Nelson Jagamara and Imants Tillers exhibition at Parliament House

Speaker Tony Smith unveils ‘The Messenger’, a new acquisition for the Parliament House Art Collection, which features in a new exhibition of works by artists Nelson Jagamara and Imants Tillers.

Speaker Smith observes that ‘both of the artists...have links with this building going back to the very beginning’.[334]

Michael Nelson Jagamara

Michael Nelson Jagamara

Image source: Auspic

31 August

Possible constitutional breach for Senator Hinch

Senator Hinch indicates he may be in breach of section 44i of the Constitution as he holds a social security number, and has until recently received a pension, from the United States of America, having worked there for some years. He is reportedly seeking advice from the Solicitor-General.[335]

On 4 September, Senator Hinch informs the Chamber that he has legal advice that his eligibility for a ‘superannuation style pension’ in the United States does not represent a breach of section 44­­, and so he will not be seeking referral to the High Court. The Government and Opposition concur.[336]

Derryn Hinch

Derryn Hinch

Image source: Auspic

4 September

Bruce Billson referred to the House Privileges Committee

The House of Representatives refers to its Standing Committee of Privileges and Members' Interests the issue of whether

‘the former member for Dunkley, Mr Bruce Billson, by accepting an appointment as, and acting as, a paid director of the Franchise Council of Australia whilst still a member of the House gives rise either to any issues that may constitute a contempt of the House or to any issues concerning the appropriate conduct of a member having regard to their responsibilities to their constituents and to the public interest.’[337]

The referral follow media reports that the former Minister for Small Business had failed to disclose to the House that he was receiving a salary from the lobby group while still in parliament.[338]

Bruce Bilson

Bruce Bilson

Image source: Auspic

4 September

Senator Xenophon referred to the Court of Disputed Returns

The Senate refers South Australian Senator Nick Xenophon to the Court of Disputed Returns to determine ‘whether by reason of s 44(i) of the Constitution there is a vacancy in the representation of South Australia in the Senate for the place for which [he] was returned’.[339]

While Senator Xenophon renounced his Greek citizenship (by descent) before entering Parliament, he becomes aware in August that he may have inherited British citizenship from his Cyprus born father. (Cyprus remained British colony until 1960).[340] Senator Xenophon announces that the Home Office had confirmed ‘he was a British overseas citizen by descent’.[341]

Xenophon becomes the sixth senator and the seventh member of Parliament to be referred to the High Court.

Nick Xenophon

Nick Xenophon (standing)

Image Source: Auspic

6 September

Clinton’s Walk for Justice

Clinton Pryor arrives at Parliament House, ending his year long, 5,800 kilometre trek from Heirisson Island (Perth) to the Federal Parliament.

Pryor presents a list of demands for justice and sovereignty to the Governor-General and the Prime Minister. Pryor is critical of both for not meeting with him and others at the Aboriginal Tent Embassy,[342] and turns his back on the Prime Minister when he perceives ‘Malcolm Turnbull did not listen respectfully’.[343]

Greens Senator Rachel Siewert tables Pryor’s list of demands in the Senate.[344]

Clinton Pryor at Australian Parliament House

Clinton Pryor at Australian Parliament House

Image source: AAP Image/Lukas Coch

6 September

Visit of Pope Tawadros II

His Holiness Pope Tawadros II, the 118th Pope of Alexandria and Patrarch of the See of St Mark, visits Parliament House[345] during a 10 day pastoral visit to Australia.[346]

His Holiness was hosted by Mr Peter Khalil, Member for Wills and ‘the first Copt to be elected to the federal parliament’.[347]

According to the 2016 census, there are 28,641 Coptic Christians in Australia.[348]

Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II at Parliament House

Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II at Parliament House.

Image source: Auspic

12 September

Parliament House’s new fence

The first prefabricated panels for the new 2.6 metre security fence are lifted into place on the roof of Parliament House. This is part of a package of works approved by the Parliament in December 2016,[349] with temporary construction fences installed on the grass ramps since May 2017 to enable ground works to be completed.

Once complete, the package of security enhancements will include: a new physical perimeter comprising fencing and landscaping; replacement of framing and glazing at the northern, eastern and western entrances; and additional CCTV security cameras.[350]

The increased security measures follow the raising of the National Terrorism Public Alert from medium to high on 12 September 2014, the first time the threat has been raised since the system was introduced in 2003.[351]

The total cost of the security upgrades is $126.7 million,[352] with works are due to be completed by the end of 2018.

Parliament House's security fence

Image source: Auspic

14 September

Murphy class A records tabled in Parliament

The final set of documents from the 1986 Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry into the conduct of Justice Lionel Murphy is tabled in the Parliament. The papers, comprising material relating to the conduct of Justice Murphy, are published on the Parliament’s website with ‘a small amount of personal information...redacted’[353] While the papers attract much media interest,[354] Justice Murphy’s son, Cameron Murphy, is highly critical of the decision to release the papers.[355]

Lionel Murphy, during his time as a Senator (1962-74)

Lionel Murphy, during his time as a Senator (1962-74)

Image source: Senator Lionel K Murphy, National Archives of Australia, A6135, K8/5/72/2

16 October

Visit by the Irish President

Irish President Michael Higgins visits Parliament House as part of this official visit to Australia.[356]

‘President Higgins is the first Irish President to visit Australia as a Guest of Government since Her Excellency Mary McAleese in 1998.’[357]  

Irish President Michael Higgins with Senate President Stephen Parry and Speaker of the House of Representatives Tony Smith

Irish President Michael Higgins with Senate President Stephen Parry and Speaker of the House of Representatives Tony Smith

Image source: Auspic

16 October

Condolences for Evelyn Scott

Parliament acknowledges the death of Indigenous elder and advocate Dr Evelyn Scott AO.[358]

Dr Scott was the first General-Secretary for the Federal Council for the Advancement of Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders, Chair of the Cairns and District Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Corporation for Women, and Chairperson of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation between 1997 and 2000.[359]

 

16 October

Brendan Nottle’s Walk for the Homeless

On 16 October, Salvation Army Major Brendan Nottle arrives at Parliament House, completing his 40 day walk from Melbourne to highlight the issue of homelessness. Opposition Leader Bill Shorten is among the many supporters who join Nottle for the final leg.[360] While in Canberra, Major Nottle also meets with the Prime Minister to discuss a national plan on homelessness.[361]

 

27 October

The High Court and the ‘Citizenship Seven’

The High Court hands down its judgment regarding the qualification of the six senators and the member of the House of Representatives referred to the Court of Disputed Returns.

The Court unanimously holds that Scott Ludlam, Larissa Waters, Malcolm Roberts, Barnaby Joyce and Fiona Nash were ‘a subject or a citizen ... of a foreign power’ at the time of their nomination for the 2016 federal election, and that each was ‘therefore incapable of being chosen or of sitting as a senator or member of the House of Representatives (as applicable)’.[362]

It finds (again unanimously) that neither Senator Canavan nor Senator Xenophon was disqualified by this provision.[363]

The Court orders the Australian Electoral Commission undertake special counts of the ballot papers to fill the four vacant Senate positions.

The Speaker of the House of Representatives issues the writ for a by-election in New England to be held on 2 December 2017.[364]

The High Court of Australia

The High Court of Australia

Image source: Australian Broadcasting Corporation Library

28 October

Ministerial reshuffle

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announces changes to the Ministry in the wake of the High Court Decision.

The Prime Minister takes portfolio responsibility for Agriculture and Water. Senator Matt Canavan is sworn in again as the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia.

Fiona Nash’s former portfolios are assigned to Darren Chester and Senator Mitch Fifield. Julie Bishop is appointed Acting Prime Minister during Mr Turnbull’s trip to Israel for commemorations of the Battle of Beersheba.[365]

 

1 November

Senate President announces resignation due to dual citizenship

Senate President Stephen Parry announces his intention to resign, having ‘received advice from the British Home Office that [he is] a British citizen by virtue of [his] father’s birthplace, thereby being a dual citizen under the provisions of the Australian Constitution.’[366] Senator Parry is the eighth parliamentarian to become enmeshed in the ‘dual citizenship saga’.[367]

Senator Parry’s matter is referred to the Court of Disputed Returns when the Senate next sits (13 November 2017).[368] However, in accordance with section 3 of the Parliamentary Presiding Officers Act 1965, he is deemed to continue to be the Presiding Officer of the Senate until his successor is chosen by that House.

Senator Stephen Parry, President of the Senate

Senator Stephen Parry, President of the Senate

Image source: Auspic

10 November

John Alexander resigns due to dual citizenship; by-election in Bennelong

Liberal member for Bennelong John Alexander resigns from Parliament, conceding he too is likely to be a dual British citizen by descent.[369]

With Mr Alexander’s resignation, the Government holds only 74 seats in the House of Representatives. However, having renounced his British citizenship, he is returned as the member for Bennelong at the 16 December by-election. Alexander wins the seat by a margin of 8,217 votes[370] over the ALP’s surprise candidate, former NSW Premier Kristina Kenneally, with a swing of -4.84 per cent.[371]

John Alexander

John Alexander

Image source: Auspic

13 November

New senators sworn in

Following its decision in Re Canavan [2017] HCA 45,on 10 November the High Court declares three new senators elected to the Senate for Queensland and Western Australia. They are sworn in to Parliament by Governor General Sir Peter Cosgrove on 13 November:

•        Fraser Anning, Senator for Queensland, replacing former Senator Malcolm Roberts (Pauline Hanson’s One Nation)

•        Andrew Bartlett, Senator for Queensland, replacing former Senator Larissa Waters (Greens), and

•        Jordon-Steele-John, Senator for Western Australia, replacing former Senator Scott Ludlam (Greens).[372]

At age 23, Jordon Steele-John becomes the youngest person to enter the Senate. The former Member for Longman Wyatt Roy remains the youngest person to enter the Australian Parliament, having been elected aged 20 years and three months.[373]

Senators Anning

Senator Bartlett

Senator Steele-John

From top: Senators Anning, Bartlett and Steele-John are escorted to the Senate table to take their oaths of office.

Image source: Auspic

13 November

New President of the Senate

Victorian Senator, and Special Minister of State, Scott Ryan is elected as the 25th President of the Senate, following the resignation of former Senator the Hon Stephen Parry.[374] At age 44, he is the youngest person to become President of the Senate.

Senator Ryan resigns from the ministry to take up his appointment as President; and Finance Minister Mathias Cormann takes on the role of acting Special Minister of State.[375]

Senator Scott Ryan, President of the Senate

Senator Scott Ryan, President of the Senate

Image source: Auspic

Watch the election of the new President

13 November and 4 December

Citizenship registers for the Parliament

On 13 November, the Senate agrees to establish a citizenship register, ‘requiring declarations and documentation from senators in respect of their citizenship status, any previous foreign citizenships held and actions taken to renounce them, birth places of parents and grandparents, and associated details’.[376] The online register is overseen by the Standing Committee on Senators’ Interests.

Senators’ declarations are to be lodged by 5 pm. 1 December 2017.

On 4 December, the House of Representatives also agrees to a resolution requiring each Member to provide (by 9 am. 5 December) a statement (and evidence) in relation to citizenship to the Registrar of Members' Interests.[377]

 

13 November and 4 December

The Parliament pays tribute to former Governor-General Ninian Stephen (1923-2017)

Condolence motions in the Senate (13 November) and in the House (on 4 December) pay tribute to Australia’s twentieth Governor-General, Sir Ninian Stephen who died on 29 October, aged 94.[378]

Following a distinguished legal career, culminating in his appointment to the High Court, Sir Ninian was sworn in as Governor General on 29 July 1982. He later served as a judge on the International Tribunals for former Yugoslavia and Rwanda (1993-1997).[379]

Sir Ninian is farewelled at a State Funeral at St Paul’s Cathedral (Melbourne) on 8 November.

Read the condolence speeches in the Senate and in the House of Representatives.

14 November

Senator Lambie Resigns

Having previously rejected speculation that she too may be a dual citizen,[380] Senator Jacqui Lambie resigns from the Senate having received confirmation of UK citizenship by descent.[381]

Senator Lambie’s matter is referred to the Court of Disputed Returns.[382] On 8 December, the High Court orders the two Tasmanian Senate vacancies be filled by a special count of votes.[383]

The count identifies Richard Colbeck and Steve Martin as the candidates who should fill the vacancies. However, before the outcome can be declared, the High Court must first determine whether Mr Martin is an eligible candidate or whether, as Major of Devonport, he holds an office of profit under the Crown and so is prevented from being chosen by reason of section 44(iv) of the Constitution.[384]

Jacqui Lambie farewelled by colleagues following her valedictory speech.

Jacqui Lambie farewelled by colleagues following her valedictory speech.

Image source: Auspic

Watch Senator Lambie’s valedictory

15 November

Results of the Australian Marriage Postal Law Survey and the Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017

Australian Statistician David Kalisch announces the results of the Marriage Law Postal Survey: 12,727,920 people have participated in the survey, 79.5 per cent of the eligible population, with 61.6 per cent responding ‘YES’ and 38.4 per cent responding ‘NO’ to the question: ‘should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?’

All states and territories record a majority YES response.[385] Of the Federal Electoral Divisions, 133 record a majority YES response, and 17 a majority NO.[386]

Map showing results of the postal survey by electorate.

Map showing results of the postal survey by electorate.

Image source: Parliamentary Library

15 November

The Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017

Senator Dean Smith introduces his private Senator’s Bill, the Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017, co-sponsored by Senators Reynolds, Wong, Pratt, Di Natale, Rice, Kakoschke-Moore, Hinch and Hume.[387]

Debate on the bill begins on the following day.[388] Coalition and ALP members and Senators are allowed a free vote.

The bill passes the Senate on 29 November with amendments, 43 votes to 12.[389] It passes the House of Representatives on 7 December (without amendment), with four members voting ‘no’.[390]

The Act enters into force on 9 December, with the first same sex weddings conducted (with special exemption from the 30 day waiting period) on 16 December.[391]

Dean Smith (centre) and five of the co-sponsors of his private bill (from left: Louise Pratt, Janet Rice, Skye Kakoschke-Moore, Penny Wong and Derryn Hinch.

Dean Smith (centre) and five of the co-sponsors of his private bill (from left: Louise Pratt, Janet Rice, Skye Kakoschke-Moore, Penny Wong and Derryn Hinch.

Image source: Auspic

Watch the second reading speech

Watch the third reading of the Bill in the Senate and

the House of Representatives

19 November

House of Representatives sittings postponed

The Leader of the House Christopher Pyne issues a statement stating that, given the Senate is ‘unlikely to finish debating the marriage equality bill until 30 November,

the Prime Minister and I have consulted the Speaker and asked that he set an alternative day for the next meeting of the House, in accordance with the Standing Orders.

The House will resume on December 4 at 10am, not November 27, and will sit until marriage equality is law and all citizenship issues have been dealt with by the House.[392] [emphasis in original]

House of Representatives Standing Order 309(c) provides that when ‘the House is not sitting, the Speaker may set an alternative day or hour for the next meeting’.

The announcement is strongly criticised by the Opposition and minor parties.[393]

 

22 November

Philip Ruddock appointed to head religious freedom review

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announces the appointment of former member of the House of Representatives Philip Ruddock to examine whether Australian law adequately protects religious freedom.[394]

Mr Ruddock is to report his findings by 31 March 2018.

 

22 November

Senator Skye Kakoschke-Moore resigns due to dual citizenship

Senator Skye Kakoschke-Moore (Nick Xenophon Team) announces her resignation as Senator for South Australia having ‘received advice from the UK Home Office ... that she had received British citizenship from her mother, who was born in Singapore in 1957’.[395]

The Senate refers Senator Moore’s matter to the Court of Disputed Returns when it next meets (27 November).[396]

Skye Kakoschke-Moore

Skye Kakoschke-Moore

Image source: Auspic

23 November

Foreign Affairs White Paper released

The Government releases its Foreign Policy White Paper, the first such document since 2003, setting out ‘the Government’s strategy for engaging with the world, and in particular the Indo-Pacific region, over the next decade’.[397]

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Trade, Tourism and Investment Minister Steven Ciobo and DFAT Secretary Frances Adamson at the launch of the 2017 Foreign Policy White Paper. 23 November 2017

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Trade, Tourism and Investment Minister Steven Ciobo and DFAT Secretary Frances Adamson at the launch of the 2017 Foreign Policy White Paper. 23 November 2017

Image source: DFAT/Nathan Fulton, Linda Roche

28 November

Committee inquiry into section 44 of the Constitution

On 28 November, the Prime Minister refers to the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters an inquiry into aspects of section 44 of the Australian Constitution, including

How electoral laws and the administration thereof could be improved to minimise the risk of candidates being found ineligible pursuant to section 44(i)

Whether the Parliament is able to legislate to make the operation of section 44(i) more certain and predictable, and

Whether the Parliament should seek to amend section 44(i).[398]

The Committee is to report to Parliament with regard to section 44(i) by 23 March 2018, and on any other provisions, by 30 June2018.

 

29 November

Senator Steele-John crowdsources his first speech

Western Australian Senator Jordon Steele-John delivers his first speech.[399] Taking a fresh approach to a venerable tradition, the Senator had turned to social media to crowdsource its contents, receiving 3000 responses to his question: ‘you could say anything* to the people in this place what would you say?’

I'm rather thrilled to be able to say that the response was quite overwhelming. Over 130,000 people saw our post. Almost 3,000 people told me what is important to them and what they think we should be doing here in this parliament, and that's not including the countless phone calls to my office, the emails and the many letters I've received as well as the conversations I've had with constituents.[400]

Jordon Steele-John

Jordon Steele-John

Image source: Auspic

Shot of facebook responses

Watch Senator Steele-John’s first speech

 

29 November

Preventing leaks at Parliament House

Scaffolding is put in place on the roof of Parliament House to enable repair of the main skylight.

Over time, glazing in the link ways and skylights has deteriorated and de-laminated, resulting in leaks. ‘A couple of years ago, during a particularly vigorous thunderstorm, attendants had to use both in the House of Representatives to mop up the drips that fell from the roof during question time.’[401]

In 2016-17, the Government provided $18.3 million in capital over two years to repair and strengthen the main and side skylights within the APH.[402]

Scaffolding over the main skylight, Australian Parliament House

Scaffolding over the main skylight, Australian Parliament House

Image source: Auspic

30 November

Banking Royal Commission

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Treasurer Scott Morrison announce a royal commission into ‘the alleged misconduct of Australia’s banks and other financial services entities’.[403]

On 18 December, Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove issues the Letters Patent appointing former High Court Justice Kenneth Hayne as Royal Commissioner and setting out the Terms of Reference for the Inquiry.

Malcolm Turnbull

Malcolm Turnbull

Image source: Auspic

2 December

New England by-election

Barnaby Joyce is elected to the House of Representatives at the New England by-election on 2 December, defeating labour candidate David Ewings 64,664 votes to 23,159, a margin of 41,505 votes. The result represents a 7.21 per cent swing to Mr Joyce. Voter turnout is a little over 87 per cent.[404]

Although a party to the High Court case which saw Mr Joyce disqualified, former independent member for New England Tony Windsor decides not to contest the by election.[405]

The poll is declared on 6 December, and the writ returned to the Speaker of the House of Representatives the same day.[406] At 2pm, the Speaker informs the House that he has received a return to writ certifying Mr Joyce’s election, and he is admitted and sworn in immediately thereafter.[407]

Barnaby Joyce being sworn into Parliament

Barnaby Joyce being sworn into Parliament

Image source: Auspic

Watch Mr Joyce’s swearing in

4 December

Celebration of Parliament’s first honey harvest

On 4 December, Senate President Scott Ryan presides over the first harvest of honey from the new hives. Over two hundred people, politicians, diplomats and members of the public, gather in the Great Hall for speeches, honey tastings, and information sessions.

Bee keepers on their way to the first harvest of Parliament House honey.

Bee keepers on their way to the first harvest of Parliament House honey.

Image source: Auspic

Read: Safekeeping, a report of a roundtable on the biosecurity of the Australian Honey Bee, convened by the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Water Resources.

6 December

Citizenship referrals and debate in the House

On 5 December Member for Batman David Feeney (ALP) announces that he is unable to locate documentation confirming renunciation of his British and Irish citizenship.[408] Mr Feeney is referred to the High Court the following day.[409]

This referral follows an unsuccessful Opposition motion to refer other members about whose eligibility concerns had been expressed: Justine Keay (ALP, Braddon); Josh Wilson (ALP, Freemantle); Susan Lamb (ALP, Longman); Rebekha Sharkie (Nick Xenophon Team, Mayo); Julia Banks (LP, Chisholm); Alex Hawke (LP, Mitchell); Nola Marino (LP, Forrest); and Jason Falinski (LP, Mackellar).

When the House divides on the motion, the vote is tied. In keeping with established precedent, the Speaker exercises his casting vote with the ‘noes’.[410]

David Feeney

David Feeney

Image source: Auspic

Watch Mr Feeney’s statemetn in the Federation Chamber

Watch the debate in the House of Representatives

6 December

A further citizenship referral in the Senate

ACT ALP Senator Katy Gallagher is referred to the Court of Disputed Returns.[411] She is the first Labor senator to be referred.

This follows earlier speculation that the Senator may have held citizenship by descent from Ecuador or Britain.[412] Senator Gallagher states that she had taken ‘all reasonable steps’ to renounce any citizenship entitlement but did not receive confirmation of this from the UK until 16 August 2018—some 118 days later.[413]

The Constitution requires that candidates not hold foreign citizenship at the time they nominate.[414] The Senate notes, in a procedural bulletin, that ‘[t]he question engaged by Senator Gallagher’s case is whether ... [the reasonable efforts] exception may also apply where a person has taken all necessary steps to renounce, but foreign law – or, possibly, foreign bureaucracy – has not operated to effect a change in status prior to nomination.’[415]

On 30 November the ACT Legislative Assembly establishes an inquiry to determine whether the Assembly should adopt new practices in appointing senators.[416]

Katy Gallagher

Katy Gallagher

Image source: Auspic

6 December

Committee inquiry into decisions of the Court of Disputed returns

On 6 December, the Senate refers the implications of recent decisions made to the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters for inquiry and report by Tuesday 6 February.

The Terms of Reference are:

The implications of recent decisions by the Court of Disputed Returns concerning section 44 of the Constitution on questions referred by the Parliament under section 376 of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918, with particular reference to:

(a) the decisions in connection with the disqualification of former Senators Bob Day and Rodney Culleton;

(b) a regime for disclosing information relating to aspects other than section 44(i), for which the Parliament has already provided;

(c) the form such a process might take and how it could be implemented; and

(d) any related matters.[417]

Committee Chair Senator Linda Reynolds says the inquiry is ‘an opportunity to provide greater clarity to the electoral process.’[418]

 

6 December

Parliament marks the 50th anniversary of the death of Harold Holt

17 December 2017 is the 50th anniversary of the disappearance of Prime Minister Harold Holt at Cheviot Beach near Portsea, Victoria.[419]

On 6 December the House of Representatives marks ‘one of the confounding events’ in Australia’s history and the life and achievements of the 17th Prime Minister of Australia.[420]

Speaking on indulgence, the Prime Minister states:

In his short time as Prime Minister, Harold Holt led Australia into a new era. ... [H]e ushered in many of the reforms that we now consider so crucial ... in our evolution to the modern nation we are today. He oversaw the dismantling of the White Australia policy ...

He drove the historic 1967 referendum 'yes' vote, winning the overwhelming approval of the nation to empower the Commonwealth to make laws for Aboriginal people and ensuring that our first peoples were included in the national census. It was in his time as Prime Minister that Australians adopted the dollar over the pound and began navigating the shifting sands of a world with new economic rules and allegiances. In the context of massive global geopolitical realignment he reintroduced Australia to our region and forged deeper ties in Asia.[421]

Members of Mr Holt’s family and friends of the Holt family are seated on the floor of the Chamber to listen to the debate.[422]

The Hon Harold Holt

The Hon Harold Holt

Image Source: Parliamentary Library.

Watch the statements on the anniversary of the death of Harold Holt in the House of Representatives

12 December

Labour Senator announces his resignation

NSW Senator Sam Dastyari announces his intention not to return to the Senate in 2018.[423]

This follows the Senator’s 30 November resignation as Deputy Opposition Whip[424] amidst growing public controversy regarding his alleged ties to a political donor linked to the Chinese Communist Party.[425] On 7 December, Attorney-General George Brandis gave notice of his intention to seek to refer Senator Dastyari to the Senate Privileges Committee.[426]

Senator Dastyari first entered Parliament in August 2013, filling a casual vacancy caused by the resignation of the Hon. Matt Thistlethwaite.

Sam Dastyari

Sam Dastyari

Image source: Auspic

15 December

Royal Commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse concludes

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse presents its 17 volume final report to Governor General Sir Peter Cosgrove. The Royal Commission was announced by Prime Minister Julia Gillard in November 2012[427] and formally established in January 2013.[428]

The Royal Commission makes over 400 recommendations.[429]

On 26 October 2017, Minister for Social Services Christian Porter introduced a bill to establish a Commonwealth redress scheme to provide compensation and counselling to eligible survivors of institutional child sexual abuse.[430]

On 20 June 2017 a joint select committee is established to oversee the Royal Commission’s redress related recommendations.[431] It is anticipated that the Committee, chaired by Senator Derryn Hinch, will meet for the first time in February 2018.

 

19 December

Major Cabinet reshuffle

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announces a much anticipated reshuffle of his ministry.[432] The new Cabinet is sworn in on 20 December.

As foreshadowed,[433] Peter Dutton becomes Minister for a new portfolio of Home Affairs, which brings togetherAustralia’s immigration, border protection, law enforcement and domestic security agencies in a single portfolio’.[434]

Western Australian MP Christian Porter moves from Social Services to replace George Brandis as Attorney-General—with Senator Brandis to take up the position of High Commissioner to the United Kingdom in the new year. Before entering federal Parliament, Porter served as the Attorney General of Western Australia.[435]

The number of women in Cabinet remains unchanged at five.[436] Tasmania is not represented.[437]

Swearing-in of the new ministry 20 December 2017

Swearing-in of the new ministry 20 December 2017

Image source: Auspic

22 December

NSW Senate recount declared

On 22 December, the High Court declares retired Major-General Andrew James (Jim) Molan elected as Senator for the State of NSW, replacing Fiona Nash whose election was ruled void on 27 October.[438]

Filling the NSW Senate vacancy has proved complicated.

Liberal Hollie Hughes had been identified by a special count of the ballots as the candidate to fill the vacant NSW seat.

However, the High Court subsequently found that Hughes was ‘incapable of being chosen’ by operation of s 44(iv) of the Constitution, as she had been appointed a part-time member of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, with effect from 1 July 2017 to 27 October—and thus held an office of profit under the Crown.[439] The Court’s reasons confirm ‘that a Senate election is not concluded if it returns an invalid candidate, but continues until a senator is validly elected. Any disqualification which arises in the meantime ... renders the candidate incapable of being chosen.’[440]

Senator Molan is sworn in on 5 February 2018,[441] and gives his first speech on 14 February.[442]

Jim Molan

Jim Molan

Image source: Auspic

Watch Senator Molan’s first speech.

2018 (to March)

Milestones

Details

Source Documents

12 January

Parliament House water plan

The Department of Parliamentary Services is granted permission by the ACT government to draw water from Lake Burley Griffin to be treated and used on its grounds.[443] A 1.5km underground pipe will carry the water from a pump station near the lake to Capital Hill.[444] Parliament House will be permitted to use 1.5 per cent of the water available from Lake Burley Griffin.[445]

The new water plan follows a 2014 study which found that the lake could provide a safe, reliable and cost effective water supply for landscape irrigation at Parliament House.[446]

Parliament House with Lake Burley Griffin in the foreground
Parliament House with Lake Burley Griffin in the foreground

Image source: Matt Ryall, Wikimedia Commons

13 February

10th anniversary of the Apology to the Stolen Generations

Parliament Marks the 10th anniversary of the Apology to the Stolen Generations, with former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd watching from the gallery.[447]

The Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, says:

Today marks a decade since former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd apologised to Australia's first peoples. Ten years ago the gallery in this place was a sea of proud but heartbroken Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, their eyes telling the story of the trauma they'd lived with for their whole lives. They came to hear the leader of the nation finally acknowledge that their pain, suffering and hurt, and the pain, suffering and hurt of their parents and grandparents, was a deep and irreparable wrong.[448]

The Opposition Leader, Bill Shorten, says:

Ten years after saying sorry, we need to know that we mean it with belated compensation for survivors, with support for the healing of their descendants, with national action to tackle the crisis of Aboriginal kids growing up in out-of-home care.[449]

Kevin Rudd
Kevin Rudd

Image source: Auspic

15 March

Visit by the Prime Minister of Vietnam

The Prime Minister of Vietnam, Nguyen Xuan Phuc, visits Parliament House. During the visit, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announces that Australia and Vietnam are ‘elevating our relationship to a strategic partnership’.[450] Cooperation between the two countries will cover ‘areas from defence to development’.[451]

Prime Minister of Vietnam Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Malcolm Turnbull
Prime Minister of Vietnam Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Malcolm Turnbull

Image source: ParlView

19 March

Constitutional recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

Both Houses agree to establish the Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition Relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.[452] The committee is to consider the recommendations of the Referendum Council (2017), the Uluru Statement from the Heart (2017), the Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples (2015), and the Expert Panel on Constitutional Recognition of Indigenous Australians (2012).[453]

The move follows the Turnbull government’s rejection of the Referendum Council’s call for a national Indigenous representatives assembly to be added to the Constitution.[454] Responding to the Referendum Council’s report, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Attorney-General George Brandis and Indigenous Affairs Minister Nigel Scullion say:

The government does not believe such an addition to our national representative institutions is either desirable or capable of winning acceptance in a referendum.’[455]

 

19 March

Visit by Aung San Suu Kyi, State Counsellor of Myanmar

Aung San Suu Kyi, the State Counsellor of Myanmar, visits Parliament House for bilateral meetings following the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) meeting in Sydney.[456] During a meeting with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Rakhine state in Myanmar is discussed and Mr Turnbull encourages ‘Aung San Suu Kyi to resettle displaced Rohingya’.[457]

Aung San Suu Kyi during a ceremonial welcome at Parliament House
Aung San Suu Kyi during a ceremonial welcome at Parliament House

Image source: ParlView

26 March

Launch of Parliament House 30th anniversary program

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Tony Smith, and the President of the Senate, Scott Ryan, launch the Australian Parliament House 30th anniversary program and the exhibitions Design in a Decade–The 1980s and From Competition to Completion–Building Australian Parliament House.

Design in a Decade showcases the art and craft of the 1980s, while From Competition to Completion charts the building’s progress from the announcement of its construction in 1978 to its opening in 1988 through objects, artworks and images.

 

27 March

Indigenous women stage sit-in to raise awareness of domestic violence

Indigenous women from Alice Springs stage a sit-in, or sorry ceremony, at Parliament House in memory of the women who have been killed or injured by partners and relatives.[458] Senator Malarndirri McCarthy (ALP, NT), who joins the women at the sit-in, says:

They’ve gone through a lot. They’ve got a very deep investment on an emotional level in terms of what they want to see for themselves and for their children and grandchildren.[459]

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women are killed by their partners at twice the rate of other Australian women, according to research by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.

 

28 March

Launch of The First Eight Project and Deakin book

The President of the Senate, Scott Ryan, and the Speaker of the House, Tony Smith, launch The First Eight Project at the Parliamentary Library. The project is a collaboration between the Parliamentary Library, the National Museum of Australia, the National Archives of Australia, the Victorian Parliamentary Library and the Australian National University’s Australian Studies Institute. Over the course of the project the Parliamentary Library will publish a series of short separate biographies of Australia’s first eight Prime Ministers. The first book, Alfred Deakin – the lives, the legacy: Australia’s second prime minister by David Headon, is launched along with the project.

Senator Scott Ryan (President of the Senate), David Headon and Tony Smith (Speaker of the House of Representatives) at the launch of The First Eight Project and Alfred Deakin – the lives, the legacy

Senator Scott Ryan (President of the Senate), David Headon and Tony Smith (Speaker of the House of Representatives) at the launch of The First Eight Project and Alfred Deakin – the lives, the legacy

Image source: Auspic



Footnotes

  1. Parliament of Australia, Landscape trials, viewed 24 August 2012, https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/
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  2. The opening of Parliament, Senate Brief No. 2, May 2011, viewed 9 August 2012, https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Senate/
    Powers_practice_n_procedures/Senate_Briefs/Brief02
    ; S Bennett, Parliament House and the Australian people, Research paper no. 29, Parliamentary Library, 7 May 2008, p. 25, viewed 9 August 2012, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22library%2Fprspub%2FSLDQ6%22

  3. ‘Welcome to Country: opening of the 42nd Australian Parliament [verbatim transcript]’, Parliament House, Canberra, 12 February 2008, Citation Id RLPP6, viewed 15 February 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22media%2Ftvprog%2FRLPP6%22

  4. House of Representatives Votes and Proceedings, 12 February 2008, item 27, pp. 27–8, viewed 26 August 2012, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/download/chamber/votes/2008-02-12/toc_pdf/RVPF001.pdf;fileType=application%2Fpdf#search=%22chamber/votes/

  5. House of Representatives, Debates, 13 February 2008, viewed 15 February 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fnoticer%2F2008-02-13%2F0002%22 

  6. Australian Government, Apology to Australia’s Indigenous peoples, viewed 25 September 2012, http://www.aph.gov.au/Visit_Parliament/Photo_gallery/Architecture; Australian Human Rights Commission, Bringing them home: the ‘Stolen Children’ report, 1997, viewed 5 September 2012, http://www.hreoc.gov.au/social_justice/bth_report/index.html; S Bennett, Parliament House and the Australian people, Research paper no. 29, Parliamentary Library, 7 May 2008, p. 13, viewed 9 August 2012, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22library%2Fprspub%2FSLDQ6%22; ‘The National Apology, 13 February 2008’, Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies, viewed 30 January 2013, https://aiatsis.gov.au/explore/articles/apology-australias-indigenous-peoples

  7. S Bennett, Parliament House and the Australian people, Research paper no. 29, Parliamentary Library, 7 May 2008, p. 15, viewed 9 August 2012, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22library%2Fprspub%2FSLDQ6%22

  8. S Bennett, Parliament House and the Australian people, Research paper no. 29, Parliamentary Library, 7 May 2008, p. 9, viewed 9 August 2012, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22library%2Fprspub%2FSLDQ6%22

  9. Parliament House: 20th anniversary celebrations, House of Representatives Hansard, 13 May 2008, p. 2574, viewed 4 October 2012, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansardr%2F2008-05-13%2F0049%22

  10. G Yunupingu, ‘Tradition, Truth & Tomorrow’, The Monthly, December 2008‒January 2009, cited in ‘Bark petitions: Indigenous art and reform for the rights of Indigenous Australians’, viewed 13 December 2012, http://australia.gov.au/about-australia/australian-story/bark-petitions-indigenous-art

  11. J Massola, ‘Chamber leaper pleads to “belong”’, Canberra Times, 2 December 2008, p. 4, viewed 16 January 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22media%2Fpressclp%2FN39S6%22

  12. The Speaker, House of Representatives, Debates, 3 December 2008; the Speaker, House of Representatives, Debates, 4 December 2008, p. 12726.

  13. Senate Journals, No. 59, 12 February 2009, viewed 11 February 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fjournals%2F20090212_SJ059%2F0027%22

  14. H Evans and R Laing, eds, Odgers’ Australian Senate Practice, Thirteenth Edition, Department of the Senate, Canberra, 2012, Evolution of the committee system, viewed 12 February 2013, https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Senate/
    Powers_practice_n_procedures/Odgers_Australian_Senate_Practice/Chapter_16
     

  15. A Albanese, ‘Parliamentary zone: approval of proposal’, House of Representatives, Debates, 24 June 2008, p. 5759, viewed 30 January 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansardr%2F2008-06-24%2F0063%22; M Rodrigues, Children in the parliamentary chambers, Research Paper, No. 9, 19 November 2009, p. 19, viewed 30 January 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22library%2Fprspub%2FY39V6%22 ; Australian Institute of Landscape Architects, Capital Hill Early Childhood Centre and Garden, Parliament House, Canberra, viewed 10 December 2012, http://www.aila.org.au/projects/act/LFA-creche/default.htm; E Macdonald, ‘Parliament to get child-care centre at last’, Canberra Times, 23 June 2006, p. 6, viewed 14 January 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22media%2Fpressclp%2F2P1K6%22

  16. Australian Government, Apology to the Forgotten Australians and former child migrants, Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, viewed 4 September 2012, http://www.fahcsia.gov.au/our-responsibilities/families-and-children/programs-services/apology-to-the-forgotten-australians-and-former-child-migrants 

  17. House of Representatives, Debates, 10 March 2010, p. 2136, viewed 15 February 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansardr%2F2010-03-10%2F0047%22

  18. Evans, H and R Laing, eds, Odgers’ Australian Senate Practice, Thirteenth edn, Department of the Senate, Canberra, 2012, Appendix 10: A chronology of the Senate 1901‒2008, accessed 8 February 2013. A Albanese, ‘Standing and Sessional Orders’, House of Representatives, Debates, 23 June 2010.

  19. J McCann and J Wilson, Representation of women in Australian parliaments, Background Note, Parliamentary Library, 7 March 2012, p. 3, viewed 6 September 2012, http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/BN/2011-2012/Womeninparliament

  20. Senate, Debates, 28 September 2010, p. 2, viewed 15 February 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansards%2F2010-09-28%2F0005%22 .

  21. Politics and Public Administration Section, The hung Commonwealth Parliament: the first year, Background Note, Parliamentary Library, 7 October 2011, viewed 12 September 2012, http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/BN/2011-2012/HungCwlthParliament; Agreement for a better Parliament: parliamentary reform, 20 October 2010, viewed 5 December 2012, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22library%2Fjrnart%2F640272%22

  22. Clerk’s review, House of Representatives, Annual Report 2011‒12, viewed 5 December 2012, http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Department_of_the_Senate/Annual_Reports/Annual_Report_2011-2012/Overviews/Clerks_review

  23. Interim report No. 1: Monitoring and review of procedural changes implemented in the 43rd Parliament, House Standing Committee on Procedure, 13 May 2011, viewed 30 January 2013, http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/House_of_Representatives_Committees?url=proc/proceduralchanges/report1.htm

  24. C Vernon, ‘Lines that speak’, Architecture Australia, Vol. 100, No. 2, March 2011, viewed 3 October 2012, http://architectureau.com/articles/lines-that-speak/

  25. House of Representatives, Debates, 29 September 2010, p. 116, viewed 11 February 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansardr%2F2010-09-29%2F0083%22

  26. Senate Journals, No. 5, 26 October 2010, viewed 11 February 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fjournals%2F20101026_SJ005%2F0004%22

  27. House of Representatives, Votes and Proceedings, no. 2, 2010, p. 34, viewed 4 December 2012, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fvotes%2F2010-09-29%2F0023%22 

  28. House of Representatives, Debates, 29 September 2010, p. 211, viewed 13 September 2012, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansardr%2F2010-09-29%2F0178%22

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  30. Senate Committees and Responsible Government: Proceedings of the Conference to mark the twentieth anniversary of Senate Legislative and General Purpose Standing Committees and Senate Estimates Committees, 3 October 1990, September 1991, Papers on Parliament, Department of the Senate, viewed 11 February 2013, http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Senate/Research_and_Education/pops

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  33. Prime Minister of Australia, Speech to the luncheon in honour of the PM of Malaysia, 3 March 2011, viewed 3 September 2012, http://isis.org.my/attachments/752_Speech_Aust_PM_03Mar11.pdf

  34. H Jenkins, ‘Questions without Notice: Carbon Pricing’, House of Representatives, Debates, 31 May 2011, pp. 5283– 84

  35. Central Tibetan Administration, ‘Top Australian leaders meet His Holiness the Dalai Lama at Parliament House’, 14 June 2011, viewed 18 December 2012, http://tibet.net/2011/06/14/top-australian-leaders-meet-his-holiness-the-dalai-lama-at-parliament-house/

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  40. G Muller, ‘”Convoy of no confidence” rumbles into Canberra’, ABC Rural, Bush Telegraph, 22 August 2011, viewed 22 January 2013, http://www.abc.net.au/rural/telegraph/content/2011/s3299149.htm

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  42. BC Wright, ed, House of Representatives Practice (6th Edition), Chapter 4: Parliament House and access to proceedings, p. 242, viewed 12 January 2013, http://www.aph.gov.au/~/media/05%20About%20Parliament/53%20HoR/532%20PPP/Practice6/PDF/Chapters/6Chap04.ashx

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  55. Second reading speech, National Disability Insurance Scheme Bill 2012, House of Representatives, Debates, 29 November 2012, p. 13877, viewed 13 June 2013, http://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/search/display/display.w3p;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansardr%2F9b96ae59-96ca-4e39-b984-8b520b432ef5%2F0005%22
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  72. P Wong, ‘Australian Water Holdings’, Senate, Debates, 19 March 2014, p. 1460.
  73. His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd) and Her Excellency Lady Cosgrove, Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia website; ‘Governor-General swearing in ceremony’, Parliament of Australia, Canberra, 28 March 2014.
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  75. T Burke, ‘Motions: Speaker’, House of Representatives, Debates, 27 March 2014, p. 3404.
  76. See Table 6.2: Motions of censure of or no confidence in the Speaker, Acting Speaker or Deputy Speaker, and related motions, ‘Criticism of Speaker’s actions and conduct’, in B C Wright, ed, House of Representatives Practice, 6th edn, Department of the House of Representatives, Canberra, 2012.
  77. Australian Electoral Commission, Senators for Western Australia have been decided, media release, 29 April 2014.
  78. The year in review’, Australian Electoral Commission Annual report 2013 ̶ 14, Commonwealth of Australia, 2014.
  79. Australian National Audit Office, The Australian Electoral Commission’s storage and transport of completed ballot papers at the September 2013 federal general election, Audit report no 31, 2013 ̶ 14, Performance audit, 2014; Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia, The 2013 federal election: report on the conduct of the 2013 election and matters related thereto, Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters, Canberra, April 2015.
  80. Parliamentary Reception in the presence of their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Parliament of Australia, 24 April 2014.
  81. B Heffernan, Australian Federal Police, Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee, Estimates, Attorney-General portfolio, 26 May 2014, p. 21.
  82. Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee, Answers to Questions on Notice, Parliamentary departments, Department of Parliamentary Services, Supplementary Budget Estimates, October 2014, Question 185.
  83. Standing Committee on Procedure (44th Parliament), Role of the Federation Chamber: celebrating 20 years of operation, Canberra, June 2015.
  84. What is the Federation Chamber?’, Infosheet 16: The Federation Chamber, House of Representatives.
  85. Ibid.
  86. D Farrell, ‘Committees: Standing Committee on Procedure—Report’, House of Representatives, Federation Chamber, Debates, 22 June 2016, p. 7147.
  87. Senate Standing Committee on Privileges, ‘160th Report: The use of CCTV material in Parliament House’, Parliament of Australia, Canberra, 5 December 2014, p. 1.
  88. Documents: Tabling’, Senate, Debates, 2 March 2015, p. 823.
  89. Parliamentary Library, Parliamentary Handbook of the Commonwealth of Australia, 44th Parliament, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 2014.
  90. Parliamentary Library, ‘Composition of Australian Parliaments by Party and Gender, as at 2 July 2014’, in J McCann, ‘Women in Australian parliaments’, FlagPost, Parliamentary Library blog, 23 July 2014.
  91. His Excellency Mr Shinzo Abe (Prime Minister of Japan), ‘Address by the Prime Minister of Japan’, House of Representatives, Debates, 8 July 2014, p. 7647.
  92. T Abbott (Prime Minister), Flags at half-mast for victims of MH17, media release, 18 July 2014.
  93. T Abbott (Prime Minister), Message of condolence, 22 July 2014.
  94. T Abbott, ‘Condolences: Ukraine air disaster’, House of Representatives, Debates, 26 August 2014, p. 8549.
  95. B Shorten, ‘Condolences: Ukraine air disaster’, House of Representatives, Debates, 26 August 2014, p. 8551.
  96. E Abetz, ‘Condolences: Mr Harry Evans’, Senate, Debates, 22 September 2014, p. 6577.
  97. T Abbott (Prime Minister), ‘Ministerial statements: National security’, House of Representatives, Debates, 22 September 2014, p. 9957.
  98. S Parry (President of the Senate), Security and Parliament House, n.d.
  99. T Abbott (Prime Minister), ‘Ministerial statements: National security’, op. cit.
  100. B Shorten (Leader of the Opposition), ‘Ministerial statements: National security’, House of Representatives, Debates, 22 September 2014, p. 9960.
  101. Parliament of Australia, Counter-Terrorism Legislation Amendment (Foreign Fighters) Bill 2014 homepage, Australian Parliament website.
  102. Ibid.
  103. House of Representatives Standing Committee on Procedure, Use of electronic devices in the Chamber and Federation Chamber, House of Representatives, Canberra, September 2014.
  104. C Pyne (Minister for Education and Training), ‘Motions: Chamber Procedures’, House of Representatives, Debates, 26 March 2015, p. 3553.
  105. The Right Honourable John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons of the United Kingdom, Guest of Parliament lecture, 30 September 2014.
  106. Senate Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee, Official Committee Hansard, 20 October 2014, p. 9, accessed 1 July 2016, and B Bishop (Speaker of the House of Representatives), ‘Questions to the Speaker: Parliament House Security ’, House of Representatives, Debates, 20 October 2014, p. 11,338.
  107. B Bishop (Speaker), ‘Statement by the Speaker: Ottawa: Attack, Parliament House: Security’, House of Representatives, Debates, 23 October 2014, p. 11743.
  108. D Cameron (Prime Minister of the United Kingdom), ‘Address by the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom’, House of Representatives, Debates, 14 November 2014, p. 12710.
  109. Xi Jinping (President of the People’s Republic of China), ‘Address by the President of the People’s Republic of China’, House of Representatives, Debates, 17 November 2014, p. 12720.
  110. N Modi (Prime Minister of the Republic of India), ‘Address by the Prime Minister of the Republic of India’, House of Representatives, Debates, 18 November 2014, p. 12730.
  111. Parliament of Australia, ‘State visit to Australia by Mr François Hollande, President of the French Republic: Joint media conference’, 19 November 2014.
  112. B Bishop (Speaker), ‘Bills: Parliamentary Service Amendment Bill 2014: Second Reading’, House of Representatives, Debates, 26 November 2014, p. 13225.
  113. S Parry (President of the Senate), ‘Second reaching speech: Parliamentary Service Amendment Bill 2014’, Senate, Debates, 26 March 2015, p. 2576.
  114. T Abbott (Prime Minister), ‘Motions: Sydney - Martin Place Siege’, House of Representatives, Debates, 9 February 2015, p. 21.
  115. Statements: Sydney – Martin Place Siege’, Senate, Journals, 9 February 2015, p. 25.
  116. B Bishop (Speaker), ‘Statement by the Speaker’, House of Representatives, Debates, 10 February 2015, p. 303.
  117. ‘Motions: Death Penalty’, House of Representatives, Debates, 12 February 2015 pp. 656ff; L. Singh, ‘Motions: Death Penalty’, Senate, Debates, 10 February 2015, p. 296.
  118. T Allard, ‘Federal politicians call for mercy for Chan and Sukumaran’, Sydney Morning Herald, 10 February 2015.
  119. M Coombs, Succession to the Crown Bill 2015, Bills digest, 84, 2014-15, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 2015, p. 2.
  120. Ibid.
  121. A Twomey, ‘Power to the princesses: Australia wraps up succession law changes’, The Conversation (website), 26 March 2015.
  122. B Bishop (Speaker), ‘Appropriations and Administration Committee: Report’, House of Representatives, Debates, 26 March 2015, pp. 3552.
  123. N Xenophon, ‘Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee: Reference’, Senate, Debates, 26 March 2015, p. 2559.
  124. T Abbott (Prime Minister), ‘Motion: Centenary of Anzac’, House of Representatives, Debates, 12 May 2015, pp. 3709.
  125. Legislative Assembly of Norfolk Island—Self Government’, House of Representatives, Debates, 27 May 2015, p. 4796, and ‘Legislative Assembly of Norfolk Island: Remonstrance — Tabling’, Senate, Debates, 15 June 2015, p. 3403.
  126. C Madden, ‘Norfolk Island Legislative Amendment Bill 2015’, Bills Digest, Parliamentary Library, 12 May 2015.
  127. T Abbott (Prime Minister), speech at the Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Celebration, ParlView, 15 June 2015.
  128. Senate, Journals of the Senate, 2013-15, No. 89, 25 March 2015, p. 2385, no. 90, p. 2431.
  129. Ibid.
  130. Condolences: Randall, Mr Donald James’, House of Representatives, Debates, 10 August 2015, pp. 7748ff and Senate, Debates 10 August 2015, p. 4691.
  131. Parliamentary Office Holders’, House of Representatives, Debates, 10 August 2015, p. 7743.
  132. N Horne, ‘Resignations of Speakers’, FlagPost, Parliamentary Library blog, 4 August 2015.
  133. Review Committee—An Independent Parliamentary Entitlements System, ‘An Independent Parliamentary Entitlements System: Review’, 23 March 2016, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet webpage.
  134. T Smith, ‘Parliamentary Office Holders’, House of Representatives, Debates, 10 August 2015, p. 7747.
  135. Australia Post website, ‘Australia, New Zealand and Singapore acknowledged in new joint stamp issue’, 12 August 2015.
  136. Parliamentary Education Office website, ‘Latest News: Anniversary of Parliamentary Broadcasting, Sitting period 10—20 August (2015)’.
  137. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Changes to the Ministry’, Media Release 20 September 2015.
  138. Ibid.
  139. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Development of Electronic Petitions Website and System—Statement by Speaker’, House of Representatives, Debates, 22 October 2015, p. 12145.
  140. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Statements on Indulgence: Questions without notice’, House of Representatives, Debates, 20 October 2015.
  141. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Changes to Question Time to Focus on Local Issues’, media release, 20 October 2015.
  142. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Statements on Indulgence’, House of Representatives, Debates, 23 November 2015, pp. 13250ff.
  143. B Shorten (Leader of the Opposition), ‘Statements on Indulgence’, House of Representatives, Debates, 23 November 2015, pp. 13251.
  144. Department of Parliamentary Services (DPS), ‘Annual Report 2015-16’, DPS, Canberra, 2016, p. 75.
  145. C Pyne (Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science Leader of the House), Family friendly changes to the House of Representatives, media release, 2 February 2016.
  146. Standing and Sessional Orders’, House of Representatives, Debates, 2 February 2016, p. 11.
  147. House of Representatives Standing Committee on Procedure, Provisions for a more family-friendly Chamber, Department of the House of Representatives, Canberra, 2 December 2015.
  148. R Lewis, ‘Why new MP’s getting red-carpet treatment’, The Australian, 5 February 2016, p. 4.
  149. Ibid.
  150. P Ruddock, Statement by the Hon. Philip Ruddock MP, media release, 8 February 2016.
  151. S Maher, ‘Father leaves the House’, The Australian, 9 February 2016, p. 11.
  152. J Bishop (Minister for Foreign Affairs), Special Envoy for Human Rights, media release, 8 February 2016.
  153. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Condolences: Halverson, Hon Robert George (Bob), OBE’, House of Representatives, Debates, 22 February 2016, p. 1593.
  154. M Grattan, ‘Defence white paper: an extra $29.9 billion spending over a decade’, The Conversation, 25 February 2016.
  155. Department of Defence, ‘2016 Defence White Paper: capability overview’, Department of Defence website.
  156. Department of Defence, ‘2016 Defence White Paper’, Department of Defence website.
  157. M Turnbull (Prime Minister) and M Payne (Minister for Defence), 2016 Defence White Paper, joint media release, 25 February 2016.
  158. M Grattan, ‘Strategic environment the most challenging Australia has faced in peace time: Turnbull’, The Conversation, 25 February 2016.
  159. D Chester (Minister for Infrastructure and Transport), ‘Ministerial statements: Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370’, House of Representatives, Debates, 3 March 2016, p. 2985.
  160. Liow Tiong Lai (Malaysian Minister of Transport), D Chester (Minister for Infrastructure and Transport) and Li Xiaopeng (Chinese Minister of Transport), ‘MH370 Tripartite Joint Communique’, 17 January 2017.
  161. D Chester (Minister for Infrastructure and Transport), ‘Statement: [Malaysia Airlines flight MH370]’, 19 October 2017.
  162. House of Representatives, Procedural Digest, 136, 22 February–3 March 2016.
  163. Department of the Senate, ‘Bills generating lengthy debates: 44th Parliament’, 12 November 2013–4 May 2016, StatsNet website.
  164. S Medhora, ‘Malcolm Turnbull hails passage of Senate voting changes after marathon debate’, The Guardian (Australia), 18 March 2016.
  165. Department of the Senate, Procedural Information Bulletin, 303, Occasional note, Long sitting days, 23 March 2016.
  166. Day v Australian Electoral Officer for the State of South Australia; Madden v Australian Electoral Officer for the State of Tasmania, (2016) 331 ALR 386, [2016] HCA 20.
  167. Parliament of Australia, ‘Territories Legislation Amendment Bill 2016 homepage’, Australian Parliament website.
  168. C Madden, Norfolk Island Legislative Amendment Bill 2015, Bills digest, 102, 2014–15, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 12 May 2015. See also: A Hough, J McCann and D Heriot, Australia’s Parliament House in 2014 and 2015: a chronology of events, Research paper series, 2016-17, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 23 December 2016, pp. 7, 32.
  169. M Davey, ‘Norfolk Island leader calls for royal commission into “Australian takeover”’, The Guardian (Australia), 27 April 2016.
  170. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Prorogue of Parliament, request for prorogation to the Governor-General, media release, 21 March 2016.
  171. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Press conference, Parliament House, Canberra, 21 March 2016: return of both houses of Parliament on April 18; federal budget on 3 May 2016; ABCC and Registered Organisations Bills; possible double dissolution election, media release, 21 March 2016.
    Further information about the power of the executive government to determine sessions of parliament is set out in Chapter 7 of R Laing (ed), Odgers’ Australian Senate practice, 14th edn, Department of the Senate, Canberra, 2016, p. 185.
  172. D Muller, ‘So you've been prorogued - common questions answered’, FlagPost, Parliamentary Library blog, 23 March 2016.
  173. Muller, ‘So you've been prorogued’, op. cit.
  174. Ibid.
  175. Ibid.
  176. Department of the Senate, Procedural Information Bulletin, 303, Occasional note, Prorogation and a new session of Parliament, 23 March 2016.
  177. Muller, ‘So you've been prorogued’, op. cit.
  178. Ibid.
  179. Governor-General’s speech’, House of Representatives, Debates, 18 April 2016, p. 3651.
  180. Politics and Public Administration Section, 44th Parliament in review, Research paper series, 2016–17, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 24 November 2016, p. 8.
  181. Australia, Senate, Journals, 149, 2013–16, 18 April 2016, p. 4115.
  182. Politics and Public Administration Section, 44th Parliament in review, op. cit.
  183. D Muller, ‘(Almost) everything you need to know about double dissolution elections’, FlagPost, Parliamentary Library blog, 29 April 2016.
  184. Ibid.
  185. P Hendy, ‘First reading: Supply Bill (No. 1) 2016–17’, ‘First reading: Supply Bill (No. 2) 2016–17’ and ‘First reading: Supply (Parliamentary Departments) Bill (No. 1) 2016–17‘, House of Representatives, Debates, 2 May 2016, pp. 3945-47.
  186. D Weight, ‘Supply Bills—a reprise’, FlagPost, Parliamentary Library Blog, 29 April 2016.
  187. Malcolm Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Documents relating to the calling of the double dissolution election [Election 2016]’, 8 May 2016.
  188. Parliament of Australia, ‘Appropriation Bill (No. 1) 2016–17 homepage’, ‘Appropriation Bill (No. 2) 2016–17 homepage’ and ‘Appropriation (Parliamentary Departments) Bill (No. 1) 2016–17 homepage’, Australian Parliament website.
  189. House of Representatives Standing Committee of Privileges and Members’ Interests, Report into whether the former member for Dobell, Mr Craig Thomson, in a statement to the House on 21 May 2012 deliberately mislead the House, Parl. Paper 84, March 2016.
  190. Ibid.
  191. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Press conference: Election 2016: our economic plan, media release, 8 May 2016; Prime Minister's advice regarding a double dissolution election, media release, 8 May 2016.
  192. Muller, ‘(Almost) everything you need to know about double dissolution elections’, op. cit.
  193. Muller, ‘(Almost) everything you need to know about double dissolution elections’, op. cit.
  194. Department of the Senate, Procedural Information Bulletin, 305, Simultaneous dissolution, 9 May 2016.
  195. S Wright, ‘Election signals mass exodus’, The West Australian, 28 March 2016, p. 6.
  196. S Parry (President) and T Smith (Speaker), ‘Death of Romaldo Giurgola AO’, joint media release, 17 May 2016.
  197. Ibid.
  198. Muller, Double, double toil and trouble, op. cit., p. 1.
  199. M Knott, ‘Turnbull claims election victory, Shorten concedes defeat’, The Canberra Times, 11 July 2016, p. 1.
  200. Muller, Double, double toil and trouble, op. cit.
  201. Ibid., p. 15.
  202. Ibid., p. 13.
  203. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Press conference: [election], media release, 10 July 2016.
  204. H Gobbett, Composition of the 45th Parliament: a quick guide, Research paper series, 2016–17, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 29 August 2016, p. 2.
  205. Ibid.
  206. G Parker, ‘Diversity a key word as Aly claims win’, The West Australian, 12 September 2016, p. 7.
  207. T McIlroy, ‘Political protest blamed for chemical damage to Parliament House lawn’, The Canberra Times, 12 July 2016, p. 4.
  208. Ibid.
  209. H Gobbett, Composition of the 45th Parliament: a quick guide, Research paper series, 2016–17, Parliamentary Library, Canberra 29 August 2016.
  210. Ibid.
  211. Ibid.
  212. Ibid.
  213. M Sukkar, ‘Parliamentary office holders: Speaker’, House of Representatives, Debates, 30 August 2016, p. 5.
  214. G Brandis, ‘Parliamentary office holders: President’, Senate, Debates, 30 August 2016, p. 2.
  215. Australia, House of Representatives, The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Parliament of Australia website, p. 3.
  216. D Muller, ‘Rotation of Senators – Parliament of Australia’, FlagPost, Parliamentary Library blog, 9 September 2016.
  217. M Fifield (Manager of Government Business in the Senate, Minister for Communications and the Arts), ‘Parliamentary Representation: Rotation of Senators’, House of Representatives, Debates, 31 August 2016, p. 157.
  218. Muller, ‘Rotation of Senators’, op. cit.
  219. L Burney, ‘Governor-General’s speech: Address-in-Reply’, House of Representatives, Debates, 31 August 2016, p. 163–168.
  220. Ibid.
  221. H Gobbett, Indigenous parliamentarians, federal and state: a quick guide, Research paper series, 2017–18, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, updated 11 July 2017, p. 2.
  222. M Turnbull, ‘Second reading speech: Building and Construction Industry (Improving Productivity) Bill 2013’, House of Representatives, Debates, 31 August 2016, p. 81; M Turnbull, ‘Second reading speech: Building and Construction Industry (Consequential and Transitional Provisions) Bill 2013’, House of Representatives, Debates, 31 August 2016, p. 85; M Turnbull, ‘Second reading speech: Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Amendment Bill 2014’, House of Representatives, Debates, 31 August 2016, p. 85. S Morrison, ‘Second reading speech: Budget Savings Omnibus Bill 2016’, House of Representatives, Debates, 31 August 2016, p. 91.
  223. Ibid.
  224. S Speldewinde, ‘Government losing votes on the floor of the House’, FlagPost, Parliamentary Library blog, 5 September 2016.
  225. M Koziol, ‘Ambush in the House’, The Canberra Times, 2 September 2016, p. 1.
  226. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Resolutions of the Senate: Banking and Financial Services’, House of Representatives, Debates, 1 September 2016, p. 382.
  227. Speldewinde, op. cit.
  228. Ibid.
  229. Australian Parliament House (@Aust_Parliament), ‘Hear hear! We’re about to see our 30 millionth visitor’, tweet, 11 September 2016, https://twitter.com/aust_parliament/status/775168584058179584.
  230. Department of Parliamentary Services (DPS), Annual report 2015–16, DPS, Canberra, p. viii.
  231. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Statement by the Speaker: Privilege, Petitions’, Senate, Debates, 13 September 2016, p. 675.
  232. R Vasta, ‘Petitions: Statements’, House of Representatives, Debates, 10 October 2016, p. 1224.
  233. M Turnbull, ‘Second reading speech: Plebiscite (Same-Sex Marriage) Bill 2016’, House of Representatives, Debates, 14 September 2016, pp. 845–48.
  234. Australia, Senate, ‘Plebiscite (Same-Sex Marriage) Bill 2016’, Journals, 12, 2016, 7 November 2016, pp. 400–401.
  235. L Tingle, ‘Turnbull loving job but others call it quits’, The Australian Financial Review, 17 September 2016, p. 4.
  236. S Parry (President of the Senate), ‘Statement by the President: Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry’, Senate, Debates, 10 October 2016, p. 1225.
  237. Ibid.
  238. Ibid.
  239. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Statement by the Speaker: Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry’, House of Representatives, Debates, 14 September 2017, p. 10411, and S Parry (President of the Senate), ‘Statement by the President: Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry’, Senate, Debates, 14 September 2017, p. 7281.
  240. H L Lee (Prime Minister of Singapore), ‘Address by the Prime Minister of Singapore’, House of Representatives, Debates, 12 October 2016, pp. 1679–82.
  241. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Press conference with the Prime Minister of Singapore [Lee Hsien Loong], Parliament House, Canberra’, transcript, 13 October 2016.
  242. Australia, Senate, ‘Senate Chamber­–Photography–Cessation of Order’, Journals, 11, 2016, 13 October 2016, p. 328.
  243. D Hinch, ‘Motions: Photography in the Senate’, Senate, Debates, 13 October 2016, p. 1754.
  244. M Knott, ‘Senate scraps archaic photography ban following 25-year fight for transparency’, The Sydney Morning Herald, (online edition), 13 October 2016.
  245. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Dutch royal visit to Australia’, media release, 2 November 2016.
  246. Ibid.
  247. Australia, Senate, ‘Qualification of Former Senator Day: reference to Court of Disputed Returns’ and ‘Qualification of Senator Culleton: documents: proposed reference to Court of Disputed Returns’, Journals, 12, 2016, 7 November 2016, pp. 374–376.
  248. Senate Procedure Committee, Photography in the chamber; Ministerial statements; Caring for infants, report, 1, The Senate, Canberra, October 2016.
  249. Australia, Senate, ’23 Procedure—Standing Committee—First Report of 2016—Consideration’, Senate, Journals, 13, 2016, 8 November 2016, p. 420.
  250. Dr R Laing, Annotated standing orders of the Australian Senate, Chapter 29, ‘Visitors’, Department of the Senate, Canberra, 2009.
  251. D Meers, ‘Nats in the crosshairs’, The Daily Telegraph, 22 November 2016, p. 8.
  252. Ibid.
  253. Australia, Senate, ‘Customs (Prohibited Imports) Amendment (Shotguns and Shotgun Magazines) Regulation: proposed disallowance’, Journals, 16, 2016, 21 November 2016, pp. 498–99.
  254. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Visit to Australia by the King and Queen of Jordan’, 22 November 2016.
  255. S Parry (President of the Senate), ‘Clerk of the Senate’, Senate, Debates, 29 November 2016, p. 3505.
  256. G Hutchens, ‘Pro-refugee protesters disrupt parliament and shut down question time’, The Guardian Australia, 30 November 2016.
  257. A Back, ‘Not guilty plea to damaging Commonwealth property’, The Canberra Times, 13 July 2017, p. 10.
  258. P Karp, ‘Refugee protesters abseil down Parliament House and dye fountain red’, The Guardian Australia, 1 December 2016.
  259. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Parliamentary Zone’, House of Representatives, Debates, 1 December 2016, p. 5089.
  260. D Hinch, ‘Parliamentary Zone: Approval of Works’, Senate, Debates, 1 December 2016, p. 3945.
  261. T McIlroy and M Koziol, ‘Public in dark over new fence’, The Canberra Times, 8 December 2016, p. 8.
  262. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Ministerial arrangements, media release, 18 January 2017.
  263. Ibid.
  264. Re Culleton [No 2] [2017] HCA 4 (3 February 2017).
  265. [Multiple members], ‘Statements on Indulgence: Tasmania: 50th Anniversary of Black Tuesday Bushfires’, House of Representatives, Debates, 7 February 2017, p. 37 and L Singh, ‘Motions: Black Tuesday Bushfires’, Senate, Debates, 8 February 2017, p. 326.
  266. A Wilkie, ‘Statements on Indulgence – Tasmania: 50th Anniversary of Black Tuesday Bushfires’, House of Representatives, Debates, 7 February 2017, p. 37.
  267. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Transcript of remarks at a reception to commemorate the 70th anniversary of Australia – Sri Lanka diplomatic relations, Parliament House, Canberra, media release, 14 February 2017.
  268. Parliament of Australia, ‘Parliamentary Entitlements Legislation Amendment Bill 2017 homepage’, Australian Parliament website.
  269. C Madden, Parliamentary Entitlements Legislation Amendment Bill 2017, Bills digest, 62, 2016–17, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 2017, p. 2.
  270. Ibid.
  271. Parliament of Australia, ‘Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority Bill 2017 homepage’, Australian Parliament website.
  272. Explanatory Memorandum, Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority Bill 2017, p. 1.
  273. C Madden, Parliamentary Business Resources Bills 2017 and Parliamentary Business Resources (Consequential and Transitional Provisions) Bill 2017, Bills digest, 97, 2016–17, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 2017, p. 3.
  274. D Dingwall, ‘Facelift for forecourt at $29m over three years’, The Canberra Times, 20 March 2017, p. 3.
  275. Ibid.
  276. Ibid.
  277. Ibid.
  278. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Visit to Australia by China’s Premier Li Keqiang, media release, 24 March 2017.
  279. Ibid.
  280. T McIlroy, ‘Beekeeping the buzzword getting political capital’, The Age, 20 March 2017, p. 4.
  281. Ibid.
  282. Parliamentary Education Office (PEO), ‘In case you missed it’, PEO website; Royal Canberra Show, ‘2018 Horticulture Produce Schedule’, Royal Canberra Show website.
  283. Ibid.
  284. P Wong and M Dreyfus, Transcript of joint doorstop interview: China extradition treaty; 18C, Parliament House, Canberra, media release, 28 March 2017.
  285. J Bishop (Minister for Foreign Affairs), China extradition treaty, media release, 28 March 2017.
  286. Re Day [No 2] [2017] HCA 14.
  287. B Merhab, ‘Alia milks her moment in the Senate’, Daily Telegraph, 10 May 2017, p. 3.
  288. Ibid.
  289. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Happy 90th to the people’s House’, The Canberra Times, 6 May 2017, p. 2.
  290. Ibid.
  291. Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), ‘President H. E. Hon. Maithripala Sirisena Official Visit to Australia’, DFAT website.
  292. Parliament of Australia, ‘Prevailing Voices – Indigenous Australian Parliamentarians’, Parliament of Australia website.
  293. F Hunter, ‘A portrait of strength, hope and sadness’, The Canberra Times, 30 May 2017, p. 4.
  294. A Hough with D Heriot, ‘Australia's Parliament House in 2016: a chronology of events’, Research paper series 2017–18, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 14 December 2017.
  295. J Black, ‘Protesters who allegedly superglued themselves to railings at Parliament House plead not guilty’, ABC News (online), 12 July 2017; AAP, ‘Superglue protesters not guilty of damage to Parliament House’, The Australian, 29 March 2018.
  296. AAP, ‘Pro-refugee protesters plead not guilty to damaging Parliament House’, The Guardian, 12 July 2017.
  297. S Ludlam, ‘Statement: Green’s Senator Scott Ludlam’, media release, 14 July 2017.
  298. S Waters, ‘Statement from Senator Larissa Waters’, media release, 18 July 2017; H Belot, ‘Larissa Waters, deputy Greens leader quits in latest citizenship bungle’, ABC News (online), 16 August 2017; M Grattan, ‘Greens senator Larissa Waters forced out of parliament’, The Conversation, 18 July 2017.
  299. Department of the Senate, For the sitting period 8–17 August 2017, Procedural information bulletin no. 317, Parliament of Australia, 18 August 2017.
  300. R Di Natale, ‘Leader of the Australian Greens, Dr Richard Di Natale responds to Larissa Waters’ resignation’, media release, 18 July 2017.
  301. S Parry (President), ‘Statement by the President: Parliamentary Budget Officer’, Senate, Debates, 19 June 2017, p. 4197; T Smith (Speaker), ‘Statement by the Speaker: Parliament House: Security; Parliamentary Budget Officer’, House of Representatives, Debates, 19 June 2017, p. 6856.
  302. M Canavan (Minister for Resources and Northern Australia), ‘Statement on Citizenship Status’, media release, 25 July 2017.
  303. A Green, ‘Matt Canavan: the High Court’s question after the latest citizenship resignation’, ABC News (online), 16 August 2017.
  304. G Brandis (Attorney-General), Transcript of statements on Senator Canavan’s citizenship, Brisbane, media release, 25 July 2017.
  305. Australia, Senate, ‘Vacancies in the representation of Western Australia and Queensland—Qualifications of senators’, Journals, 49 (proof), 8 August 2017, p. 1598.
  306. Australia, Senate, ‘Qualification of Senator Canavan—Reference to Court of Disputed Returns’, Journals, 49 (proof), 2017, 8 August 2017, p. 1599; ‘Qualification of former Senators Ludlam and Waters—References to Court of Disputed Returns’, ibid., p. 1599.
  307. Department of the Senate, For the sitting period 8–17 August 2017, Procedural information bulletin no. 317, Parliament of Australia, 18 August 2017.
  308. R Di Natale, ‘Notices: Presentation’, Senate, Debates, 8 August 2017 p. 4962.
  309. A Remeikis, ‘MPs scramble to confirm citizenshipThe Sydney Morning Herald, 20 July 2017; R Baxendale, ‘Senator refuses to show proof of sole citizenship’, The Australian, 22 July 2017; A Gartrell, ‘One Nation senator under intense pressure’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 27 July 2017; S Martin and N Evans, ‘No Italian ballot papers for Canavan’, West Australian, 28 July 2017; B Doherty, ‘Malcolm Roberts citizenship explainer: one nation – or more?’, The Guardian, 28 July 2017; R Lewis, ‘Roberts’s eligibility as MP in ‘real difficulty’’, The Australian, 29 July 2017.
  310. P Hanson, ‘Parliamentary representation: Qualifications of Senators’, Senate, Debates, 9 August 2017, p. 5216.
  311. [Multiple senators], ‘Condolences: Lester, Mr Kunmanara OAM, Yunupingu, Dr G’, Senate, Debates, 17 August 2017, pp. 6008.
  312. Australia, Senate, ‘Plebiscite (Same-Sex Marriage Bill) 2016—proposed restoration to Notice Paper’, Journals, 50 (proof), 2017, 9 August 2017, p. 1620.
  313. M Cormann, (Minister for Finance), Next steps for a national plebiscite on same sex marriage, media release, 9 August 2017.
  314. Census and Statistics (Statistical Information) Direction 2017, 9 August 2017. An amended Direction is issued on 16 August 2017, clarifying ‘the statistical information to be published and defin[ing] eligibility for participation in the statistical survey as those persons who would be entitled to vote in a federal election’: Census and Statistics (Statistical Information) Amendment Direction 2017, 16 August 2017.
  315. M Neilsen, Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017, Bills digest, 54, 2017–18, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 2017, p. 6.
  316. A Wilkie, Application to stop postal vote lodged with High court, media release, 10 August 2017.
  317. P Karp, ‘Marriage equality postal vote to be challenged in high court by Andrew Wilkie and advocates’, The Guardian, 9 August 2017.
  318. M Davey and P Karp, ‘Same-sex marriage postal survey is lawful, high court finds’, The Guardian. 7 September 2017; Wilkie v The Commonwealth [2017] HCA 40; E Byrne, ‘SSM survey challenges “demonstrably without substance”, High Court finds’, ABC News (online), updated 28 September 2017.
  319. C Simpson, ‘The same-sex marriage ruling broke the High Court’s website’, Gizmodo, 7 September 2017.
  320. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Ministerial statements: Solomon Islands’, House of Representatives, Debates, 14 August 2017, p. 8233.
  321. Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), ‘Solomon Islands: Bilateral security treaty’, DFAT website.
  322. B Joyce (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources), ‘Parliamentary representation: Deputy Prime Minister, Qualifications of Members’, House of Representatives, Debates, 14 August 2017 p. 8185.
  323. Australia, House of Representatives, ‘Reference of matter to the Court of Disputed Returns’, Votes and proceedings, 68, 14 August 2017, p. 958.
  324. M Grattan, ‘High Court to rule on whether Barnaby Joyce is a New Zealander’, The Conversation,14 August 2017
  325. T Burke, ‘Parliamentary Representation: Qualifications of Members’, House of Representatives, Debates, 14 August 2017, p. 8240; Australia, House of Representatives, ‘Questions’, Votes and Proceedings, 68, 14 August 2017, p. 960 [Suspension of standing orders moved]; Australia, House of Representatives, ‘Questions’, Votes and Proceedings, 71, 17 August 2017, p. 1008 [Suspension of standing orders moved].
  326. J Bishop (Minister for Foreign Affairs), Transcript of doorstop interview, media release, 15 August 2015; M Grattan, ‘Barnaby Joyce: No, it wasn't a conspiracy that caused his citizenship problem — it was himself’, ABC News (online), 16 August 2017; A Gartrell, ‘The email that could bring down our deputy leader’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 15 August 2017; J Gooding, ‘Paranoia on Aotearoa’, The Interpreter, Lowy Institute blog, 17 August 2017; P Wong, Transcript of interview with Fran Kelly: ABC Radio National Breakfast, media release, 16 August 2017.
  327. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Visit to Australia by the President of Croatia, media release, 11 August 2017.
  328. S Parry, ‘Questions without notice: Trade Unions’, Senate, Debates, 17 August 2017, p. 5979; S Dastyari, ‘Questions without Notice: Pauline Hanson’s One Nation’, Senate, Debates, 17 August 2017, p. 5980; A Remeikis, ‘One Nation leader Pauline Hanson wears burqa in Senate question time stunt’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 17 August 2017.
  329. P Hanson, ‘Questions without notice: National Security’, Senate, Debates, 17 August 2017, p. 5984.
  330. F Nash (Minister for Regional Development), ‘Adjournment: Deputy Leader of the Nationals’, Senate, Debates, 17 August 2017, p. 6054.
  331. Australia, Senate, ‘Qualification of Senator Nash—Reference to Court of Disputed Returns’, Journals, 56 (proof), 2017, 4 September 2017, p. 1788.
  332. G Brandis (Attorney-General), ‘Parliamentary Representation: Qualifications of Senators’, Senate, Debates, 4 September 2017, p. 6059.
  333. P Wong, ‘Parliamentary Representation: Qualifications of Senators’, Senate, Debates, 4 September 2017, p. 6060; H Polley, ‘Questions without notice: Deputy Leader of the Nationals’, Senate, Debates, 4 September 2017, p. 6116; C Moore, ‘Questions without notice: Deputy Leader of the Nationals’, Senate, Debates, 4 September 2017, p. 6116; [Multiple senators], ‘Questions without notice: Take note of Answers: Deputy Leader of the Nationals’, Senate, Debates, 4 September 2017, p. 6132.
  334. T Smith (Speaker), ‘The opening of the exhibition ‘Meeting Place’ and unveiling of new work ‘The Messenger’’, speech, T Smith MP website, 17 August 2017.
  335. P Coorey, ‘Refer me to High Court, says Hinch’, The Australian Financial Review, 1 September 2017, p. 5.
  336. D Hinch, ‘Parliamentary Representation: Qualifications of Senators: Hinch, Sen Derryn’, Senate, Debates, 4 September 2017, p. 6063; D Hinch, ‘Hinch S44 citizenship issue cleared by Government and Opposition’, media release, n.d.
  337. Australia, House of Representatives, ‘Matter of privilege—Reference to Committee of Privileges and Members’ Interests’, Votes and Proceedings, 72, 4 September 2017, p. 1018.
  338. P McGrath, ‘Bruce Billson, former Liberal minister, failed to disclose salary from lobby group while in parliament’, ABC News (online), 9 August 2017; M Knott, ‘"Supping with the Devil": Colleagues surprised Bruce Billson received lobbyist income while an MP’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 10 August 2017.
  339. Australia, Senate, ‘Qualification of Senator Xenophon—Reference to Court of Disputed Returns’, Journals, 56 (proof), 2017, 4 September 2017, p. 1789; A Remeikis, ‘Xenophon blames political rivals over nationality questions’, The Canberra Times, 18 August 2017, p. 9.
  340. A Remeikis and A Gartrell, ‘Xenophon gets drawn into ongoing constitutional crisis’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 19 August 2017, p. 4.
  341. N Xenophon, ‘Parliamentary representation: Qualifications of Senators: Xenophon, Sen, Nick’, Senate, Debates, 4 September 2017, p. 6062; A Smethurst, ‘ Xenophon the Brit on court list’, The Sunday Times, 20 August 2017, p. 2.
  342. Welcome to Country, ‘Clinton Pryor walks across Australia, Governor General refuses to step outside’, Welcome to Country website, 30 August 2017; J Robertson, ‘Clinton Pryor has tense meeting with PM after walking across Australia’, The Guardian, 6 September 2017.
  343. N Thorpe, ‘Clinton Pryor turns his back on Prime Minister’, NITV News (online), 7 September 2017.
  344. R Siewert, ‘Documents: Indigenous Affairs’, Senate, Debates, 5 September 2017, p. 6336.
  345. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Distinguished Visitors’, House of Representatives, Debates, 6 September 2017, p. 9464.
  346. Coptic Orthodox Diocese of Melbourne and Affiliated Regions, ‘His Holiness Pope Tawadros II: 2017 Australian Papal Visit’, Pope of Hope website.
  347. P Khalil, ‘Statements by Members: His Holiness Pope Tawadros II’, House of Representatives, Debates, 6 September 2017 p. 9463.
  348. Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), 2016 Census of Population and Housing.
  349. S Parry (President), ‘Parliamentary Zone: Approval of works’, Senate, Debates, 1 December 2016, p. 3943; T Smith (Speaker), ‘Parliamentary Zone’, House of Representatives, Debates, 1 December 2016, p. 5089.
  350. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Parliamentary Zone’, House of Representatives, Debates, 1 December 2016 p. 5089.
  351. S Parry (President of the Senate), Security and Parliament House, n.d.
  352. Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee, Official committee Hansard, 22 May 2017, p. 61.
  353. S Parry (President), ‘Statement by the President: Parliamentary Commission of Inquiry’, Senate, Debates, 22 June 2017, p. 4661; T Smith (Speaker), ‘Statement by the Speaker’, House of Representatives, Hansard 22 June 2017, p. 7423.
  354. K McClymont and M Whitbourn, ‘A judge and a Swiss bank account’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 15 September 2017; A Lynch, ‘The Lionel Murphy papers shed more light on a controversial life’, The Conversation, September 14 2017; A Davies, ‘Lionel Murphy papers: the allegations the inquiry wanted answering’, The Guardian, 14 September 2017; A Clark, ‘Lionel Murphy papers prove no more guilt for the judge’, The Australian Financial Review 14 September 2017; G Kelly, ‘Opinion: "The air should be cleared", and a star chamber is born’, The Australian, 29 September 2017.
  355. B Norington, ‘Murphy’s son slams “unfair” release’, The Australian 14 September 2017.
  356. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Distinguished Visitors’, House of Representatives, Debates, 16 October 2017, p. 10678; M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Remarks at the bilateral meeting with His Excellency Mr Michael D Higgins, President of Ireland, Parliament House, Canberra, media release, 16 October 2016.
  357. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Visit to Australia by the President of Ireland, media release, 12 October 2017.
  358. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Condolences: Scott, Dr Evelyn Ruth, AO’, House of Representatives, Debates, 16 October 2017.
  359. Australian Government, ‘Dr Evelyn Scott AO (1935–2017)’, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet website, 6 October 2017.
  360. TEN Eyewitness News, ‘Brendan Nottle completes walk for the homeless’, TEN Eyewitness News (online), 16 October 2017.
  361. I Royall, ‘Salvos' Brendan Nottle and Mayor Robert Doyle meet PM to discuss homelessness’, The Herald Sun, 19 October 2017.
  362. High Court of Australia, In The matters of questions referred to the Court Of Disputed Returns pursuant to section 376 of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 (Cth) concerning Senator the Hon Matthew Canavan, Mr Scott Ludlam, Ms Larissa Waters, Senator Malcolm Roberts, the Hon Barnaby Joyce MP, Senator the Hon Fiona Nash and Senator Nick Xenophon, [2017] HCA 45, judgment summary, 27 October 2017.
  363. Ibid.
  364. T Smith (Speaker), By-election for New England media release, 27 October 2017.
  365. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Transcript of press conference, Sydney, media release, 28 October 2017.
  366. S Parry (President of the Senate), ‘Statement to Senate Colleagues’ and ‘Letter from Stephen Parry to the Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia resigning from the Office of President of the Senate dated 2 November 2017’, tabled in the Senate 13 November 2017.
  367. R Yosufzai, ‘Senate President Stephen Parry signals resignation if he is a dual UK citizen’, SBS News, 31 October 2017.
  368. Australia, Senate, ‘Resignation of President—Vacancy in the representation of Tasmania—Orders of Court of Disputed Returns—Election of senators’, Journals, 68 (proof), 2017, 13 November 2017, p. 2163.
  369. J Norman, ‘Liberal backbencher John Alexander resigns amid deepening citizenship crisis’, ABC News (online), 11 November 2017; N Wolfe, ‘Liberal MP John Alexander quits over dual citizenship’, news.com.au, 11 November 2017.
  370. Australian Electoral Commission (AEC), ‘Tally Room: Bennelong, NSW’, AEC website; H Belot, ‘Kristina Keneally: Former NSW Premier to go up against John Alexander in Bennelong by-election’, ABC News (online), 15 November 2017.
  371. AEC, ‘Tally Room: Bennelong, NSW’, AEC website.
  372. P Cosgrove (Governor-General), ‘Parliamentary representation: Senators Sworn’, Senate, Debates, 13 November 2017, p. 8123.
  373. H Gobbett, S Speldewinde and R Lundie, First, most and more: facts about the Federal Parliament, Research paper series, 2016–17, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 2017.
  374. Australia, Senate, ‘Election of President’, Journals, 68 (proof), 2017, 13 November 2016, p. 2163.
  375. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Ministerial arrangements, media release, 13 November 2017.
  376. Australia, Senate, ‘Proposed Citizenship Register’, Journals, 68 (proof), 2017, 13 November 2017, p. 2179.
  377. Australia, House of Representatives, ‘Proposed Citizenship Register’, Votes and Proceedings, 88, 4 December 2017, p. 1235.
  378. Australian Financial Review, ‘Obituary: Sir Ninian dies at 94’, The Australian Financial Review, 30 October 2017 p.6.
  379. High Court of Australia (HCA), ‘Sir Ninian Martin Stephen PC KG AK GCMG CGVO KBE QC’, HCA website; Politics and Public Administration Section, ‘Sir Ninian Stephen: 15 June 1923 – 29 October 2017’, Biographical information, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 1 November 2017.
  380. P Karp, ‘Jacqui Lambie drawn into citizenship saga after “revealing” father born in Scotland’, The Guardian, 8 November 2017; H Belot, ‘Jacqui Lambie denies citizenship concerns despite Scottish-born father’, Radio Australia, ABC website, 9 November 2017.
  381. J Lambie, ‘Parliamentary Representation: Valedictory’, Senate, Debates, 14 November 2017, p. 8296.
  382. Australia, Senate, ‘Qualification of Senator Lambie—Reference to Court of Disputed Returns’, Journals, 69 (proof), 2017, 14 November 2017, p. 2201.
  383. Re Parry; Re Lamb; Re Kakoschke-Moore [2017] HCATrans 254 (8 December 2017). Australian Electoral Commission (AEC), AEC to conduct special count for Tasmanian Senate, media release, updated 8 December 2017.
  384. Re Parry; Re Lambie [2017] HCATrans 258 (13 December 2017).
  385. Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), Australia supports changing the law to allow same-sex couples to marry, media release, 15 November 2017.
  386. ABS, Australian marriage law postal survey, 2017 cat. no. 1800.0, ABS, Canberra, 15 November 2017.
  387. M Neilsen, Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017, Bills digest, 54, 2017–18, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 2017.
  388. D Smith, ‘Bills: Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017: Second Reading’, Senate, Debates, 16 November 2016, p. 8615.
  389. Australia, Senate, ‘Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017’, Journals, 74 (proof), 2017, 29 November 2017, p. 2367.
  390. Australia, House of Representatives, ‘Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017’, Votes and Proceedings, 91, 7 December 2017, p. 1288.
  391. J Power and F Dmytryshchak, ‘Australia’s first same-sex couples say “I do”’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 16 December 2017; A Dow, ‘Race against time for Australia’s first same-sex wedding’, The Age, 15 December 2017.
  392. C Pyne (Leader of the House), Statement regarding the House of Representatives, media release, 20 November 2017.
  393. M Doran, ‘Parliament cancelled or delayed? Major parties trade insults ahead of final sitting weeks’, ABC News (online), 21 November 2017; P Karp and G Hutchens, ‘Government accused of avoiding revolt as parliamentary sitting week cancelled’, The Guardian, 20 November 2017.
  394. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Ruddock to examine religious freedom protection in Australia, media release, 22 November 2017, accessed 10 January 2018.
  395. P Karp, ‘Skye Kakoschke-Moore: NXT senator resigns over dual citizenship’, The Guardian 22 November 2017; S Kakoschke-Moore, ‘Statement on Citizenship’, Media Release, 22 November 2017.
  396. Australia, Senate, ‘Qualification of former Senator Kakoschke-Moore—Reference to Court of Disputed Returns’, Journals, 72 (proof), 2017, 27 November 2017, p. 2275.
  397. M Parkinson, ‘2017 Foreign Policy White Paper: advancing Australia’s interests’, DFAT Blog, 22 November 2017.
  398. Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters, Inquiry into matters relating to section 44 of the Constitution, ‘Terms of Reference’, Parliament of Australia website.
  399. J Steele-John, ‘First Speech: Steele-John, Sen Jordon’, Senate, Debates, 29 November 2017, p. 9256.
  400. Ibid., p. 9257.
  401. S Peatling, ‘Parliament House, showing signs of wear and tear, is in need of a facelift’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 5 August 2017.
  402. Australian Government, Budget measures: budget paper no. 2: 2016–17, p. 133; T McIlroy, ‘Parliament House roof turned into work site as skylights are repaired’, The Canberra Times, 29 November 2017.
  403. M Turnbull (Prime Minister) and S Morrison (Treasurer), Royal Commission—banks and financial services, joint media release, 20 November 2017. See also, M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Transcript of joint press conference, Parliament House, Canberra, media release, 30 November 2017.
  404. AEC, ‘Tally Room: New England (NSW)’, AEC website.
  405. ABC News, ‘Tony Windsor confirms he will not run against Barnaby Joyce in New England by-election’, ABC News (online), 27 October 2017; M Doran, ‘Tony Windsor demands High Court find political nemesis Barnaby Joyce ineligible for office’, ABC News (online), 3 October 2017.
  406. Australia, House of Representatives, ‘Return to Writ—New England Division’, Votes and Proceedings, 90, 6 December 2017, p. 1271.
  407. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Parliamentary Representation: Members Sworn’, House of Representatives, Debates, 6 December 2017, p. 12831.
  408. D. Feeney, ‘Parliamentary Representation: Qualifications of Members: Feeney, David, MP’, House of Representatives, Debates, 5 December 2017, p. 12731.
  409. Australia, House of Representatives, ‘Reference of Matter to Court of Disputed Returns’, Votes and Proceedings, 90, 6 December 2017, p. 1275.
  410. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Parliamentary Representation: Qualifications of Members’, House of Representatives, Debates, 6 December 2017, p. 12889.
  411. Australia, Senate, ‘Qualification of Senator Gallagher—Reference to Court of Disputed Returns’, Journals, 78, 6 December 2017, p. 2471.
  412. T McIlroy and B Hall, ‘"Not Ecuadorian by descent": Labor's Katy Gallagher deies dual citizenship’, The Canberra Times, 30 August 2017; Australian Associated Press, ‘Labor senator Katy Gallagher “is not and has never been” a citizen of Ecuador’, The Guardian, 28 August 2017; T McIlroy, ‘Labor sought legal advice over Katy Gallagher's citizenship statusThe Canberra Times, 4 September 2017; T McIlroy, ‘Katy Gallagher faces High Court referral over dual citizenship amid cross-party talks’, The Canberra Times, 5 December 2017; K Gallagher, ‘Parliamentary representation: Qualifications of Senators’, Senate, Debates, 4 September 2017, p. 6063.
  413. K Gallagher, ‘Parliamentary representation: Gallagher, Senator Katy’, Senate, Debates, 6 December 2017, p. 9795.
  414. Department of the Senate, For the sitting period 27 November to 7 December 2017, Procedural information bulletin no. 321, Parliament of Australia, n.d.
  415. Ibid.
  416. V Dunne (Deputy Speaker), ‘Administration and Procedure—Standing Committee: Proposed referral’, ACT Legislative Assembly, Debates, 30 November 2017, p. 5393.
  417. Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters, Inquiry into matters relating to section 44 of the Constitution, ‘Terms of Reference’, Parliament of Australia website.
  418. Parliament of Australia, New inquiry on decisions made by the Court of Disputed Returns, media release, 12 December 2017.
  419. IR Hancock, ‘Holt, Harold Edward (1908–1967)’, Australian Dictionary of Biography, vol. 14, Melbourne University Press, 1996.
  420. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Statements on Indulgence: Holt, Hon Harold Edward CH’, House of Representatives, Debates, 6 December 2017, p. 12832.
  421. Ibid.
  422. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Distinguished visitors’, House of Representatives, Debates, 6 December 2017, p. 12831.
  423. S Dastyari, Statement, media release, 12 December 2017.
  424. S Dastyari, ‘Statements: Dastyari, Senator Sam’, Senate, Debates, 30 November 2017, p. 1.
  425. N McKenzie, J Massola and R Baker, ‘Dastyari told donor of phone tap’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 29 November 2017; Q McDermott, ‘Sam Dastyari “tried to pressure” Tanya Plibersek not to meet with Chinese activist’, ABC News (online), 11 December 2017; K Murphy, ‘The quest for Sam Dastyari's scalp turned a serious issue into a circus’, The Guardian, 12 December 2017; M Grattan, ‘Two Labor frontbenchers urge Sam Dastyari to consider his position’, The Conversation, 11 December 2017.
  426. S Ryan (President), ‘Privilege’, Senate, Debates, 7 December 2017, p. 105.
  427. J Gillard (Prime Minister), Transcript of press conference: Parliament House, Canberra, media release, 12 November 2012.
  428. J Gillard (Prime Minister), Government formally establishes Royal Commission, media release, 11 January 2013 [enclosing Letters Patent and Terms of Reference for the Royal Commission].
  429. Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, ‘Final Report released’, media release, 15 December 2017.
  430. Commonwealth Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse Bill 2017.
  431. Australia, Senate, ‘Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse—Joint Select Committee—Appointment’, Journals, 45 (proof), 2017, 19 June 2017, p.1472; Australia, House of Representatives, ‘Message from the Senate’, Votes and Proceedings, 62, 20 June 2017, pp. 869–71.
  432. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Ministerial arrangements, media release, 19 December 2017.
  433. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Transcript of press conference: Parliament House, Canberra, media release, 18 July 2017; M Turnbull (Prime Minister), G Brandis (Attorney-General), P Dutton (Minister for Immigration and Border Protection) and M Keenan (Minister for Justice), A strong and secure Australia, joint media release, 18 July 2017.
  434. C Barker and S Fallon, ‘What we know so far about the new Home Affairs portfolio: a quick guide’, Research paper series, 2017–18, Parliamentary Library, Canberra, 2017.
  435. Parliament of Western Australia, ‘Hon Charles Christian (Christian) Porter MLA’, Extract from the Western Australian Parliamentary Handbook, webpage.
  436. J Ireland, ‘Comment: Have yourself a merit little Christmas: Turnbull's reshuffle a logic-free zone’, The Sydney Morning Herald 21 December 2017, accessed 21 December 2017; P. van Onselen, ’Did ‘merit’ prevent promotion of Linda Reynolds, Julia Banks and Sarah Henderson?’, The Australian 21 December 2017, accessed 21 December 2017.
  437. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Media Conference, Sydney: Transcript 19 December 2017’.
  438. AEC, ‘Senate special counts—statements of results: NSW 22 November 2017’, AEC webpage.
  439. Re Nash [No 2] [2017] HCA 52.
  440. Department of the Senate, For the sitting period 27 November to 7 December 2017, Procedural information bulletin no. 321, Parliament of Australia, 21 December 2017.
  441. Australia, Senate, ‘Vacancy in the representation of New South Wales—Election of Jim Molan’, Senate, Journals, 80 (proof), 5 February 2018, p. 2555.
  442. J Molan, ‘First Speech: Molan, Sen Jim’, Senate, Debates, 14 February 2018, p. 1142.
  443. D Dingwall, ‘MPs plan to pump lake’, The Canberra Times, 12 January 2018, p. 1.
  444. Ibid.
  445. Ibid.
  446. Ibid.
  447. T Smith (Speaker), ‘Distinguished Visitors’, House of Representatives, Debates, 13 February 2018, p. 1191.
  448. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), ‘Apology to Australia’s Indigenous Peoples: 10th Anniversary’, House of Representatives, Debates, 13 February 2018, p. 1191.
  449. B Shorten (Leader of the Opposition), ‘Apology to Australia’s Indigenous Peoples: 10th Anniversary’, House of Representatives, Debates, 13 February 2018, p. 1193.
  450. M Turnbull (Prime Minister), Remarks at Bilateral Meeting with His Excellency Mr Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, Parliament House, Canberra, media release, 15 March 2018.
  451. Ibid.
  452. A Taylor (Minister for Law Enforcement and Cybersecurity), ‘Committees–Constitutional Recognition Committee: Appointment’, House of Representatives, Debates, 1 March 2018, p. 2351; C Fierravanti-Wells (Minister for International Development and the Pacific), ‘Committees–Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition Relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’, Senate, Debates, 19 March 2018, p. 1485.
  453. A Taylor (Minister for Law Enforcement and Cybersecurity), ‘Committees–Constitutional Recognition Committee: Appointment’, House of Representatives, Debates, 1 March 2018, p. 2528.
  454. M Grattan, ‘Turnbull government say no to Indigenous “Voice to Parliament”’, The Conversation, 26 October 2017.
  455. Ibid.
  456. P Karp, ‘Malcolm Turnbull encourages Aung San Suu Kyi to resettle Rohingya’, The Guardian, 19 March 2018.
  457. Ibid.
  458. B Brennan, ‘Indigenous women travel to Canberra to draw attention to family violence’, ABC News (online), 27 March 2018.
  459. Ibid.

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