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Abbott’s decision on conscience vote betrays Liberals’ belief in individual choice

Tony Abbott's decision to rule out a conscience vote for Coalition members on marriage equality again demonstrates he's out of touch with what most Australians want, the Australian Greens said today.

"Numerous surveys show Australians want their MPs to have a conscience vote on same-sex marriages," Greens' marriage equality spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.

"Mr Abbott should stop swimming against the tide of public opinion and let his Coalition MPs have a free vote when the legislation is presented in parliament next year.

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Labor lurches to the right and loses touch

Opening the Labor Party conference, Julia Gillard told her party faithful she wanted the ALP to be the party that says "yes to the future".

Yet the Prime Minister spent the next three days advocating for the resurrection of the old, tired conservative policies of John Howard. On policies covering asylum seekers, uranium and same-sex marriage, Labor's leader backed the stance of the former ultra-conservative Liberal prime minister.

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Australians pay as Labor digs a hole for itself on tax

The "year of decision and delivery" is quickly coming to an end and the Prime Minister is determined to get the government's mining tax passed through the House of Representative this week before the summer break of Parliament. The Senate would then deal with the legislation when Parliament resumes in 2012.

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Australians pay as Labor digs a hole for itself on tax

The "year of decision and delivery" is quickly coming to an end and the Prime Minister is determined to get the government's mining tax passed through the House of Representative this week before the summer break of Parliament. The Senate would then deal with the legislation when Parliament resumes in 2012.

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People smuggling bill misleads Australian public

The government's hastily-drafted Deterring People Smuggling Bill 2011 misleads Australians because it does nothing to disrupt smuggling or stop the trade's kingpins from exploiting asylum seekers and poor Indonesian fishermen, the Australian Greens said today.

"This Bill, and the Commonwealth charges it seeks to amend, fails to address the fact the people smuggling organisers deem the Indonesian crew as expendable as the leaky boats," Greens' immigration spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.

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Australian Greens back motion on Tibetan self-determination; condemn Beijing’s repression

The Australian Greens at their national conference on Sunday responded to the plight of Tibet by passing a resolution that recognised self-determination for Tibetan peoples and condemned the ongoing repression of Tibetans by the Chinese government.

"The old parties may go on ignoring Tibetan people, but the Greens are again using their voices to highlight Tibetan peoples' rights to their traditional homelands and to spiritual and political expression," Greens' spokesperson for Tibet, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.

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