How Tony Abbott voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should put a large proportion of a person's welfare payment onto a debit card that cannot be used for alcohol or gambling and cannot be used to make cash withdrawals

Division Tony Abbott Supporters vote Division outcome

21st Jun 2018, 12:33 PM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment (Cashless Debit Card Trial Expansion) Bill 2018 - Second Reading - Agree with bill's main idea

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The majority voted in favour of the bill's main idea, which is to expand the trials for the cashless debit card to other places.

In parliamentary jargon, this vote was a vote to read the bill for a second time and, because it was successful, means that the House can now discuss the bill in more detail.

What is the bill's main idea?

The bill was introduced to:

  • expand the cashless debit card arrangements to a further trial site, the Bundaberg and Hervey Bay area, to run until 30 June 2020;
  • specify the class of trial participants for the area and increase the total number of trial participants overall to 15 000;
  • provide for an exception from the restrictive trade practices provisions of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 for merchants that implement product level blocking systems to identify that a cashless debit card is being used for payment and, if any restricted products are being purchased, decline the transaction; and
  • limit the use of the restricted portion of a payment to prevent the portion being used to obtain cash-like products which could be used to obtain alcohol or gambling.
Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

13th Feb 2018, 4:32 PM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment (Cashless Debit Card) Bill 2017 - Consideration of Senate Message - Agree with the amendment to pass the bill

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The majority voted in favour of a motion "That the amendment be agreed to." This amendment was introduced by the Senate, who agreed to pass this bill only if the House agreed to it. Since the House has agreed, the bill will now become law.

What was the amendment?

The amendment was introduced by NSW Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells (Liberal Party) on behalf of the Government. She explained that:

The government amendment extends the trial of the cashless debit card to 30 June 2019. The amendments also specify that the trial will be limited to three sites—namely, the East Kimberley and the included communities, Ceduna and the surrounding regions, and the Goldfields. The bill retains the existing legislated limitations on trial parameters in relation to the number of sites, participant numbers and the duration of the cashless debit card trial.

Yes Yes Passed by a small majority

6th Feb 2018, 6:05 PM – Representatives Social Services Legislation Amendment (Cashless Debit Card) Bill 2017 - Second Reading - Agree with the bill's main idea

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The majority voted in favour of the main idea of the bill, which means that the House can now discuss it in more detail. In parliamentary jargon, they voted to read the bill for a second time.

Main idea of the bill

The bill was introduced to:

remove certain restrictions on the cashless debit card trial and thereby allow the extension of trial arrangements in current sites and to further sites.

Read more about this trial in the bills digest.

Yes Yes (strong) Passed by a small majority

How "voted very strongly for" is worked out

The MP's votes count towards a weighted average where the most important votes get 50 points, less important votes get 10 points, and less important votes for which the MP was absent get 2 points. In important votes the MP gets awarded the full 50 points for voting the same as the policy, 0 points for voting against the policy, and 25 points for not voting. In less important votes, the MP gets 10 points for voting with the policy, 0 points for voting against, and 1 (out of 2) if absent.

Then, the number gets converted to a simple english language phrase based on the range of values it's within.

No of votes Points Out of
Most important votes (50 points)      
MP voted with policy 2 100 100
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
MP absent 0 0 0
Less important votes (10 points)      
MP voted with policy 1 10 10
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 0 0 0
Total: 110 110

*Pressure of other work means MPs or Senators are not always available to vote – it does not always indicate they have abstained. Therefore, being absent on a less important vote makes a disproportionatly small difference.

Agreement score = MP's points / total points = 110 / 110 = 100%.

And then