How Michael Forshaw voted compared to someone who believes that people seeking asylum in Australia, who arrive without a visa and particularly those who arrive by boat, should be held offshore in an Australian territory like Christmas Island while their application is processed (See the policy "For regional processing of asylum seekers" for more on processing asylum claims in other countries, like Nauru)

Division Michael Forshaw Supporters vote Division outcome

25th Nov 2009, 4:05 PM – Senate Motions - Asylum Seekers - Stop excising territory

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young. This means that the motion was rejected.

The motion was:

That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) the Federal Government’s ongoing commitment to continuing with the excised territories of Christmas Island, Cocos Islands and Ashmore Reef, and(Read about the Rudd government's decision to keep these islands outside of Australia's migration zone here. )

(ii) the sheer expense of running the offshore detention facility on Christmas Island;

(b) recognises concerns raised by the Australian Human Rights Commission, Amnesty International and the Refugee Council of Australia, to the limited access to sufficient health facilities, resources, and torture and trauma counselling services, due to the remoteness and isolation of the Christmas Island detention facilities from mainland Australia; and

(c) calls on the Government to end the policy of excision and bring all offshore arrivals to the mainland for processing.(Read more about the history of asylum in Australia, including offshore processing, here.)


No No Not passed by a large 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 0 0 0
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: 10 10

*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 = 10 / 10 = 100%.

And then