PUSHING REFORM: Greens leader Senator Richard Di Natale makes a point in the Senate, where emotions have been running high over electoral reform.
PUSHING REFORM: Greens leader Senator Richard Di Natale makes a point in the Senate, where emotions have been running high over electoral reform. Lukas Cochaap

Move to get rid of micro-parties continues

DEBATE in the Senate on the Coalition-Greens bill to reform the Upper House's voting system dragged on yesterday and would seem likely to do the same today.

The bills that would change the Senate voting system - in an attempt to get rid of the micro-party crossbenchers - appeared unlikely to pass last night as sittings trudged towards an 11pm adjournment.

A total of 22 amendments to the bill were put forward, by all parties, including government recommendations from the brief committee examination of the law.

The government wants to pass the bill this week, to ensure a double dissolution "clears out" the crossbench, but Labor and the crossbenchers have been doing their best to hold up proceedings.

The government also wants to use union-related bills to re-instate the John Howard-era building watchdog as the "trigger" for the double dissolution.

The last date Malcolm Turnbull can call a double dissolution election is May 11.


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