If the Crown can dismiss a democratically elected (Whitlam) government, why can’t it strike out a clause of our Constitution?
There is no doubt that there are more parliamentarians who are ineligible on the basis of Section 44(i) of the federal Constitution. An audit would expose these but not solve any problems relating to voting on bills or parliamentary salaries.
There is also the problem of past ineligible members of parliament who are now in the receipt of pensions. Are these people now liable to pay back pensions and parliamentary salaries?
It is unlikely that a Referendum would strike out Section 44(i).
Although most citizens naturally object to Royal interference in democracy, I am sure they would sullenly accept the need to ensure Australia should be governable. And after the Constitution has been changed, we can always dismiss the Crown for its despicable act and become a Republic.
D. A. Corbett, Albury
When the rules don’t suit
Anthony Hoffmann made some very good points in his letter to the editor (‘Pollies only call for change of rules to suit themselves’, The Border Mail, November 6).
It certainly does seem to be a case of the pollies concluding that they can’t be expected to follow the basic rules that apply to standing for election so instead of admitting fault and what could only be termed incompetence on a wide scale, the pollies turn on the rule that has caught them out. Classic politician thinking there’s one set of rules for the rest of us and another set for them.
Carole McIntosh, Albury
What are we thinking
I don’t think we are very smart. Having traumatised refugees in Manus and Nauru, it is now very possible that New Zealand and even the US will profit by accepting people who have the potential to become very industrious and valuable citizens in their host countries. By our short sightedness, xenophobia and plain bad policy, Australia will miss out. Dumb.
It even beggars belief that we as a nation which values highly our agricultural production would open a coal mine over the Great Artesian Basin and threaten the livelihood of Queensland farmers with pollution from the mine. Likewise we who so highly value the world heritage status of the Great Barrier Reef would allow this mine to threaten its survival and its 65,000 tourism jobs with coal ships using it as a busy shipping lane. Stupid.
When Australia is so richly endowed with renewable energy resources that will offer countless jobs well into the future, why threaten all this to help an Indian coal business with a very dodgy reputation with a $1 billion taxpayer funded loan for such short term gain.
I thought we were the clever country. Obviously politicians from the Coalition, Labor and One Nation are proving me wrong.
David Sloane, Corowa
A matter of urgency
Of course Sussan Ley feels an audit of our politicians citizenship is not needed. The Liberal party is barely hanging on now. The audit should be conducted as a matter of urgency.
Perhaps what should also be included is if they held dual citizenship, when it was renounced.
Wouldn't that be interesting.