The majority voted in favour of amendments (1) to (8), (17) to (31), and (33) to (38), which were introduced by West Australian Senator Louise Pratt (Labor).

What do the amendments do?

Senator Pratt explained that:

These amendments go to the substantive parts of this bill and the core reasons that Labor are opposed to it.

Schedule 3 provides for the cessation of the wife pension. This is not something that Labor support. We note that, of the 7,750 recipients, there are many who would transfer under this provision to the age pension and the carers payment and would be no worse off. Indeed, it makes sense to simplify payments. But I have to say that we are not prepared to see many other vulnerable women on the wife pension go backwards in their access to income support. There are 3,100 women who will be worse off and 2,900 women transferring onto a jobseeker payment. This is not a new area of social security; this has been closed to new applicants since 1995. So you have 2,900 women who will have been out of the workforce for more than 20 years who will be transferred onto a jobseeker payment. This is a pretty extraordinary thing to do to women who have had very little, if any, exposure to the workforce.

We are also very concerned about the 200 women living overseas who will no longer be able to access any income support other than the support that their spouse is eligible for. We can see that, overnight, they would be $670 worse off a fortnight. This is an incredibly perilous situation to put them into. We have here a group of low-income women who will be left with nothing to live on other than their partner's pension, many of them having been out of the workforce for a great many years. As I said before, they will have been receiving the wife pension for a minimum of 22 years.

It seems reasonable to us, in the opposition, that this group of women should be grandfathered, to avoid them facing such a significant financial crisis, the kind of crisis that comes with not only deep economic cost but also a great sense of personal distress. There are a reasonably small number of women affected; therefore, there would be a reasonably minimal cost of grandfathering them. It is indeed a cruel and unnecessary cut.

Votes Not passed by a small majority

Nobody rebelled against their party.

Party Votes
Cory Bernardi SA Australian Conservatives Absent
Australian Greens (100% turnout) 9 Yes 0 No
Andrew Bartlett Queensland Yes
Richard Di Natale Victoria Yes
Sarah Hanson-Young SA Yes
Nick McKim Tasmania Yes
Lee Rhiannon NSW Yes
Janet Rice Victoria Yes
Rachel Siewert WA Yes
Jordon Steele-John WA Yes
Peter Whish-Wilson Tasmania Yes
Australian Labor Party (72% turnout) 18 Yes 0 No
Catryna Bilyk Tasmania Yes
Carol Brown Tasmania Yes
Kim Carr Victoria Yes
Anthony Chisholm Queensland Yes
Jacinta Collins Victoria Yes
Alex Gallacher SA Yes
Chris Ketter Queensland Yes
Kimberley Kitching Victoria Yes
Jenny McAllister NSW Yes
Malarndirri McCarthy NT Yes
Claire Moore Queensland Yes
Deborah O'Neill NSW Yes
Helen Polley Tasmania Yes
Louise Pratt WA Yes
Lisa Singh Tasmania Yes
Glenn Sterle WA Yes
Anne Urquhart Tasmania Yes
Murray Watt Queensland Yes
Doug Cameron NSW Absent
Patrick Dodson WA Absent
Don Farrell SA Absent
Katy Gallagher ACT Absent
Kristina Keneally NSW Absent
Gavin Marshall Victoria Absent
Penny Wong SA Absent
Nigel Scullion NT Country Liberal Party No
Derryn Hinch Victoria Derryn Hinch's Justice Party No
Sue Lines WA Deputy President Yes
Steve Martin Tasmania Independent Yes
Tim Storer SA Independent Yes
Fraser Anning Queensland Independent No
Lucy Gichuhi SA Independent No
David Leyonhjelm NSW Liberal Democratic Party No
Liberal National Party (50% turnout) 0 Yes 1 No
Matthew Canavan Queensland No
James McGrath Queensland Absent
Liberal Party (77% turnout) 0 Yes 17 No
Eric Abetz Tasmania No
Simon Birmingham SA No
Slade Brockman WA No
David Bushby Tasmania No
Michaelia Cash WA No
Richard Colbeck Tasmania No
Jonathon Duniam Tasmania No
David Fawcett SA No
Concetta Fierravanti-Wells NSW No
Mitch Fifield Victoria No
Jane Hume Victoria No
Ian Macdonald Queensland No
James Paterson Victoria No
Marise Payne NSW No
Linda Reynolds WA No
Zed Seselja ACT No
Dean Smith WA No
Mathias Cormann WA Absent
Lucy Gichuhi SA Absent
Jim Molan NSW Absent
Anne Ruston SA Absent
Arthur Sinodinos NSW Absent
National Party (100% turnout) 0 Yes 3 No
Bridget McKenzie Victoria No
Barry O'Sullivan Queensland No
John Williams NSW No
Nick Xenophon Team (100% turnout) 0 Yes 2 No
Stirling Griff SA No
Rex Patrick SA No
Pauline Hanson's One Nation Party (100% turnout) 0 Yes 3 No
Brian Burston NSW No
Peter Georgiou WA No
Pauline Hanson Queensland No
Scott Ryan Victoria President No
Totals (83% turnout) 30 Yes – 32 No