Senators Are Talking About TV Shows In Parliament Because They’ve Run Out Of Laws To Debate
What happened to "Good government starts today"?
Just when you thought Australian politics couldn’t get any more ridiculous… it does. It’s only the second week Parliament has been sitting since the election but it turns out the government has run out of things to talk about. Coalition Senators have been forced to deliver speeches on random topics because the government doesn’t have any laws ready to actually debate.
Given that the sole purpose of Parliament is to debate legislation, it’s a pretty extraordinary event. Two weeks ago the government temporarily lost its majority when a number of its own MPs left work early. Both incidents show that the government is clearly struggling to run the show.
Because the government doesn’t have bills ready for debate in the Senate, it forced its Senators to make 20 minute long speeches on whatever took their fancy. According to Fairfax Media one Senator rambled on about the history of the Australian flag and waxed lyrical about the Last Night of the Proms, a concert aired by the BBC.
"It was a fantastic spectacle" – @JamesMcGrathLNP filibusters about his favourite tv show 'Last Night At The Proms'. pic.twitter.com/bgHnRqzBZ4
— Alice Workman (@workmanalice) September 12, 2016
US politics: senate filibusters to stop major/contested reforms
AUS politics: senate filibusters the onset of nothingness
— Max Chalmers (@MaxChalmers90) September 12, 2016
Defence Minister Marise Payne – a senior cabinet minister – looks mighty pissed off to have to spend her time on a Senate filibuster #auspol
— Bevan Shields (@BevanShields) September 12, 2016
Senators are paid nearly $15 million of taxpayers' money each year (as well as ministerial allowances) #senate #filibuster
— Ewart Dave (@davidbewart) September 12, 2016
At the time of writing the Minister for Defence is currently discussing a Facebook post that describes a soccer game played between Australian and Iraqi soldiers. While our overseas military deployments are an important topic, it’s pretty sad they’re only being discussed as part of a silly filibuster. The Coalition Senators are expected to keep up the speeches till Question Time at 2pm.
Great work, guys. Really good use of time and resources.