AAP/ Lukas Coch

Australians To Vote Their First Referendum Followed By The Senate Passes Referendum Plan

Australians will have a chance to vote for or against an Indigenous Voice as the Senate passed the bill on Monday, 52 votes to 19. 

After months of parliamentary procedures, the Senate now requires Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to establish a date for the referendum, which must occur within a period of two to six months from now. 

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Mr Albanese is expected to announce a referendum for October, marking the first referendum since 1999 when Australians voted against the establishment of a republic. 

The assistant minister for Indigenous Australians, Malarndirri McCarthy, told the Senate before the vote that the First Nations people want this to happen. 

“They’re reaching out to all Australians, to be able to feel proud of this time in our country’s history, where we can lift one another up.” 

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The Yanyuwa Garrawa woman said today was a historical moment, and the debate had been carried out in a dignified matter despite different views.

Independent senator Lidia Thorpe was wearing a t-shirt reading “gammin”, referring to her opposition to the Voice. She insisted the Voice would be little more than “appeasing white guilt”. 

The bill received support from the Labor Party, the Greens, a few Liberal Party members, David Pocock, and the Jacqui Lambie Network, resulting in its successful passage. However, other members including other Liberals, the Nationals, Thorpe, One Nation, and Ralph Babet voted against it. 

More to come. 

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