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Someone tried to pull a fast one.

11/07/2014


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What an interesting turn of events in the Senate yesterday.
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I suspected something was on when Abbott appeared doing a presser from Perth. The presser was timed before the Senate began. In Perth, it was 6am. That’s a rather early time to get up if you are not on an election campaign or the faux campaign Abbott ran from 2010 to 2013.
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Clearly, something was afoot to make him get up that early. And when Clive appeared on TV shortly after saying PUP would be voting against the carbon repeal bill, it all fell into place.
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Abbott’s presser was a message. And his message was full of warning bells. The Senate ‘should’ pass the repeal bill today, he said. He added a load of other words of half optimism. He even tried to drop a veiled threat onto the cross benches with the same threat he turned into a reality on Windsor and Oakeshott. He said they were voted in by the conservative vote. In other words, he was saying remember what my mate Rupert did to those other guys.
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PUP may have been watching the Abbott presser. They may not. But they were clearly quiet angry about something. So angry, they did indeed end up voting against the repeal bill.
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From what we know, PUP sent round an amendment on the Monday of this week. Later talks between PUP and the Coalition had PUP made changes to this amendment, but it appears, the coalition where planning on a double cross all along.
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The focus of the changes to the original amendment were mostly technical terminology over who exactly is liable for what Palmer called a penalty if they do not pass on the refund to consumers. The coalition spent the entire week talking with PUP over these technical terms. But they did not tell PUP one very very important thing.
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You see, the Senate can’t initiate amendments that raise revenue. Penalty or not. The Coalition are well aware of this. It’s bread and butter stuff for those in Federal Politics. So the coalition spent the entire week trying to divert PUP’s attention from this little trap and argued technical terminology and lawyer words.
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What would have happened is the Coalition would have passed the repeal bill with the amendment that they then KNEW would be struck down as unconstitutional. So they get their repeal, and Palmer and PUP get shafted.
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Abetz should have advised PUP of this problem on the Monday, when PUP first sent them the amendment. They did not. Nor did the Coalition distribute the changes PUP made on the Friday morning meaning those changes where not distributed to the full Senate two hours prior to a vote and therefore those changes could not be voted on.
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The really funny part was it was the Senate clerk who bought it to the attention of PUP that the amendment had constitutional issues. This should have been mentioned by the Coalition. Abetz as leader of the senate for the coalition would know this. Yet it was the Senate clerk that alerted PUP to the problem.
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There began a furious round of corridor talks between Abetz and PUP as well as the odd phone call to Clive. Abetz was now saying to PUP to trust him. That they should pass the repeal bill and next week, the coalition will make some changes in parliament. Palmer was having none of it. He wanted to see the changes in HoR first. Then PUP will vote.
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Now we also are seeing why this was never going to happen in the HoR if PUP had opted to ‘trust’ Tony. One of the other cross benches, David Leyonhjelm, is very anti taxes, penalties or otherwise. And he has come out saying that if there are extra taxes/penalties in the repeal bill, *HE* wont be voting for the bill!!! I can guarantee you that the Coalition were well away of Leyonhjelm’s opinion. The other thing he is against is increasing the size of the ACCC!
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Meanwhile, the coalition are trying to placate PUP by pointing out they will increase the size of the ACCC for him!!! But Palmer wants to see the HoR add the penalties into the legislation AND increase the ACCC powers.
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This will no doubt mean they will lose Leyonhjelm’s vote. Which puts the coalition behind the eight ball if they make those changes Palmer wants and still behind it if they do!
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Abbott has staked his political career on something or rather. He had also called an ETS all sorts of names. And soon he will have to call it friend. Abbott has a habit of saying stupid stuff. Stuff like he didn’t punch a wall. Bolt and Kroger went further and called Barbra Ramajan a liar for saying he punched a wall. Recently both Kroger and Bolt were forced to apologise for calling Barbra a liar. That means she did not lie about Abbott punching a wall. So that means Abbott was lying when he said he did not punch any wall.
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Take the people who are now trapped and imprisoned on a Australian vessel in international waters. These people are there now because Abbott stupidly painted the whole asylum seeker issue as simple. Simple people voted for him and his simple beliefs. And when Abbott and the coalition realised its not simple at all, Abbott invoked operation silence. But silence can also be deafening. And Abbott’s determination to look good is a ‘at all costs’ mentality. And so the people that end up paying Abbott’s costs are the weak, the oppressed, the poor, and those who are too old to work. Which is exactly what he is doing in his budget.
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It will be interesting if any changes at all are made as requested by Clive Palmer/PUP and as not wanted by David Leyonhjelm. I don’t hold out much hope it will go David Leyonhjelm’s way. Nor do I imagine the electricity generators will be happy with Clive’s amendment.
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And all while this debate rages, the world recorded its warmest May on record in 2014. No matter which way Abbott looks, the heat is definitely on.
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A. Ghebranious July 2014

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