How Lee Rhiannon voted compared to someone who believes that protests shouldn't be allowed close to abortion clinics

Division Lee Rhiannon Supporters vote Division outcome

25th Jun 2018, 4:00 PM – Senate Motions - Freedom of Speech - Exclusion zone around abortion clinics

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Katter's Australian Party Senator Fraser Anning, which means it failed.

Liberal Senator Simon Birmingham (SA) crossed the floor and voted 'No' against the majority of his party.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) the New South Wales (NSW) Parliament has copied the socialist government in Victoria to ban protests by people trying to protect the rights of the unborn outside abortion clinics,

(ii) people who enter the 150 metre "exclusion zone" arbitrarily declared around abortion clinics to peacefully protest in defence of the right to life now face jail terms,

(iii) these "exclusion zones" are nothing more than an attempt to restrict freedom of speech,

(iv) no such "exclusion zones" apply to any other forms of protest and violent left-wing protesters opposed to democracy and capitalism do not face such draconian punishments, and

(v) a democratic government should not involve itself in regulating the faith and prayers of Australians, much less imprisoning people for them; and

(b) condemns the NSW Parliament for introducing a law which severely restricts freedom of speech and political expression.

No No (strong) Not passed by a small majority

9th Nov 2015, 3:58 PM – Senate Motions — Freedom of Speech

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Nationals senator Matthew Canavan moved that the Senate support freedom of speech and condemn the Greens for supporting restrictions on protests. The motion was made in response to the Greens' campaign to make protesting outside abortion clinics illegal.

The vote was tied, so it didn't pass.

The State Parliaments decide on buffer zones, so even if this motion passed, the existing laws wouldn't change. When this motion was introduced, only Tasmania had buffer zone laws, but by the end of the month, Victoria also had them.

Wording of the motion

That the Senate notes:

(a) the important role freedom of speech plays in the exercise of public debate;

(b) that informed public debate requires the expression of different views, even if you disagree with them;

(c) that this nation has fought wars for democracy, for freedom of speech and for the right to protest; and

(d) that attempts by the Australian Greens and their supporters to introduce legislation banning peaceful protest from public areas is an attack on a fundamental right and should be opposed.

No No Not passed

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 1 50 50
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: 60 60

*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 = 60 / 60 = 100%.

And then