Summary

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The majority voted in favour of an amendment to change the proposed rise in the debt ceiling from $500 billion to $400 billion instead. The amendment was introduced by Labor Senator Penny Wong.

This means that this amendment will now by attached to the bill and returned to the House of Representatives for their consideration.(See the division in the House of Representatives on whether to accept this amendment here. )

Background to Bill

On 22 October 2013, the Abbott Government announced that it will raise the debt ceiling from $300 billion to $500 billion.(Read more about this in the media here. ) This was following the August 2013 Pre-Election Economic and Fiscal Outlook which reported that the Treasurer's standing borrowing authority would reach the $300 billion limit by December 2013.

The purpose of the increase to the debt ceiling is to "provide stability and certainty to financial markets about the Government's ability to issue sufficient debt to manage its budget".(See the explanatory memorandum (106 KB). More about the bill, including its bills digest, is available here.)

Votes Passed by a small majority

Nobody rebelled against their party.

Party Votes
Australian Greens (100% turnout) 9 Yes 0 No
Richard Di Natale Victoria Yes
Sarah Hanson-Young SA Yes
Scott Ludlam WA Yes
Christine Milne Tasmania Yes
Lee Rhiannon NSW Yes
Rachel Siewert WA Yes
Larissa Waters Queensland Yes
Peter Whish-Wilson Tasmania Yes
Penny Wright SA Yes
Australian Labor Party (90% turnout) 27 Yes 0 No
Catryna Bilyk Tasmania Yes
Carol Brown Tasmania Yes
Doug Cameron NSW Yes
Kim Carr Victoria Yes
Jacinta Collins Victoria Yes
Stephen Conroy Victoria Yes
Sam Dastyari NSW Yes
Don Farrell SA Yes
John Faulkner NSW Yes
Mark Furner Queensland Yes
Alex Gallacher SA Yes
Sue Lines WA Yes
Joe Ludwig Queensland Yes
Kate Lundy ACT Yes
Gavin Marshall Victoria Yes
Anne McEwen SA Yes
Jan McLucas Queensland Yes
Claire Moore Queensland Yes
Nova Peris NT Yes
Helen Polley Tasmania Yes
Lisa Singh Tasmania Yes
Ursula Stephens NSW Yes
Glenn Sterle WA Yes
Lin Thorp Tasmania Yes
Mehmet Tillem Victoria Yes
Anne Urquhart Tasmania Yes
Penny Wong SA Yes
Mark Bishop WA Absent
Deborah O'Neill NSW Absent
Louise Pratt WA Absent
Nigel Scullion NT Country Liberal Party No
John Madigan Victoria Democratic Labor Party No
Stephen Parry Tasmania Deputy President No
Nick Xenophon SA Independent No
Liberal Party (89% turnout) 0 Yes 24 No
Cory Bernardi SA No
Simon Birmingham SA No
Sue Boyce Queensland No
George Brandis Queensland No
David Bushby Tasmania No
Michaelia Cash WA No
Richard Colbeck Tasmania No
Mathias Cormann WA No
Sean Edwards SA No
Alan Eggleston WA No
David Fawcett SA No
Concetta Fierravanti-Wells NSW No
Mitch Fifield Victoria No
Bill Heffernan NSW No
David Johnston WA No
Helen Kroger Victoria No
Ian Macdonald Queensland No
Brett Mason Queensland No
Marise Payne NSW No
Anne Ruston SA No
Scott Ryan Victoria No
Zed Seselja ACT No
Arthur Sinodinos NSW No
Dean Smith WA No
Eric Abetz Tasmania Absent
Christopher Back WA Absent
Michael Ronaldson Victoria Absent
National Party (100% turnout) 0 Yes 4 No
Ron Boswell Queensland No
Bridget McKenzie Victoria No
Fiona Nash NSW No
John Williams NSW No
John Hogg Queensland President Yes
Totals (92% turnout) 37 Yes – 32 No