Labor welcomes the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters report into section 44 of the Constitution.
Issues around section 44, particularly those related to dual citizenship, have been an unwelcome distraction from the important issues that the Australian public rightly expect the Parliament to be focused on. This multi-party report is an important step forward.
Labor will give this report and its recommendations the serious consideration they deserve.
Labor notes the committee’s recommendation for a referendum on section 44. However we also recognise the need to address issues related to dual citizenship in a timely and practical manner.
We welcome the Government’s indication that it intends to improve candidate nomination processes in line with the unanimous JSCEM recommendations and has committed to consulting with all relevant stakeholders.
These practical measures will address the key issue of ineligibility of candidates and will allow the Parliament to give appropriate consideration to all of the recommendations made in the report.