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FOR – Crown References Amendment Bill 2023 - Second Reading - Agree with the bill's main idea

The majority voted in favour of a motion to agree with the main idea of the bill, which is known as giving the bill a second reading in parliamentary jargon. This means they can now discuss it in more detail.

What does this bill do?

According to the bill homepage, the bill:

Amends 29 Acts to update certain references associated with the Crown to reflect the accession of a new Sovereign.

Perth MP Patrick Gorman (Labor) explained that:

The government's view is that this bill is of an administrative nature that reflects the change that has occurred in Australia following the passing of Queen Elizabeth II and the ascension of King Charles III. We think other discussions could happen in other places, but this bill is of a purely administrative nature, and I'd urge all members to support it.

Berowra MP Julian Leeser (Liberal Party) explained why the Coalition opposes the bill:

The Crown References Amendment Bill 2023 makes several amendments to a variety of acts to replace references to 'Her Majesty', 'the Queen' and 'the King' with 'the Sovereign'. The bill creates a new term for senior counsel to include King's Counsel and Queen's Counsel. The bill amends oaths and affirmations by removing references to His or Her Majesty and replacing them with a direction to insert the applicable pronoun. The reason the coalition is opposing this is that when the coalition asked if the government had consulted with the Governor-General on the bill, we were advised that the Prime Minister and the cabinet had no intention of consulting the Governor-General until the bill had reached its royal assent stage. The government wanted to pass the Crown References Amendment Bill without even speaking to the King's representative in Australia, the Governor-General. The Prime Minister wanted to pass the Crown References Amendment Bill before speaking to the Crown. The coalition will not be supporting this bill until we have assurances that the government has consulted with the Crown's representative in Australia, the Governor-General.


Date and time: 1:06 PM on 2023-11-27
Allegra Spender's vote: Aye
Total number of "aye" votes: 85
Total number of "no" votes: 51
Total number of abstentions: 15
Related bill: Crown References Amendment Bill 2023

Adapted from information made available by

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