My Voting Record

How I vote

As an independent, I consider each legislation on its merits and seek to represent the views of the Warringah community. When I evaluate proposed legislation, I follow this process:

  1. The drafting or technical aspects of proposed legislation
    Is it good at law and does it represent good governance? Is it constitutionally sound?
  2. Intended effects and the evidence in support of the legislation
    What does this seek to do? Is the evidence base rigorous? Is this legislation necessary?
  3. Effect on Warringah
    How will the legislation affect Warringah and Australia? Is this good for the future of the community?
  4. Community views and feedback
    What are the views expressed in submissions from individuals, groups and organisations? What are the subject matter experts saying? What does relevant business think? What is the legal profession’s position?
  5. Ethics of the bill
    Is it ethical? Is it compatible with human rights and international law?

Finally, I also consider the way the legislation has been drafted and presented.

  1. Has there been consultation? Drafts circulated? Briefings?
  2. Has the bill had sufficient time for debate? Has it been properly scrutinised?
  3. What are the politics behind the bill?

My voting record

Over 80% of legislation passes the final approval point in the House of Representatives without a vote (known as the third reading). This is known as passing on the voices.

Of the 15-20% that has gone to a vote since I was elected, I voted with Government over 50% of the time. Key issues where I have voted against the government include the Medevac legislation for refugees in offshore detention, watering down the environmental protection and biodiversity act and increasing university fees for students of business, law and the arts

I also vote against legislation where insufficient evidence has been presented to Parliament, especially where there is knowledge that the Government holds evidence pertaining to the Bill that it has not presented to Parliament, such as the Cashless Debit Card legislation. 

There are a lot of games played in parliament, mostly by the Government shutting down debate, because the Government holds the majority, they get to determine who gets to speak and when. If they don’t like a motion or the direction of the debate they can vote that “the member no longer be heard” meaning they can vote that the person speaking no longer has the floor and they turn their mic off, also known as a gag order. Since I was elected, one and a half times as many votes have taken place on suspensions of standing orders and shutting down debate than on actual legislation. I vote against shutting down debate as I consider that representing the views of Warringah and debating the issues and legislation is the primary purpose of the House of Representatives.

Sometimes I abstain from voting if there has been insufficient time to consider the issue on a vote has been called. One such example was the Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Amendment (Withdrawal from Amalgamations) Bill where the Government introduced the Bill and pushed it through the house with Labor’s support with less than an hour for anyone on the crossbench to review the Bill.  

For an overview of where I have voted in this sitting in Parliament, please see the table below. 

If you would like to see my complete voting record, please visit the Australian Parliament House website

As good as my word

Which improves benefits sharing from class actions for everyday Australians.

In at least 19 division the crossbench voted separately from the major parties. These included voting against changes to reduce transparency of political donations at the Federal Level.

To ensure that the rights of witnesses to access statements and submissions were protected in legislation.