How Andrew McLachlan voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should include mandatory minimum sentences in their federal-level criminal laws that deal with crimes such as child sex offences

Division Andrew McLachlan Supporters vote Division outcome

16th Jun 2020, 3:28 PM – Senate Crimes Legislation Amendment (Sexual Crimes Against Children and Community Protection Measures) Bill 2019 - Consideration of House of Representatives Message - Mandatory minimum sentences

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The majority voted in favour of a motion:

That the committee does not insist on its amendment to which the House of Representatives has disagreed.

The amendment in question is the one that would have removed schedule 6, which dealt with mandatory minimum sentences

Because this vote was successful, the bill - including schedule 6 - will now pass and be made law.

What are mandatory minimum sentences?

The bills digest explains that "[m]andatory sentencing laws specify a minimum penalty or a fixed penalty that a judge must impose in relation to a particular offence or type of offender (for example a repeat offender)." There is a lot of debate about the effectiveness of mandatory sentences - see the bills digest for more discussion.

Yes Yes Passed by a large majority

15th Jun 2020, 7:55 PM – Senate Crimes Legislation Amendment (Sexual Crimes Against Children and Community Protection Measures) Bill 2019 - in Committee - Mandatory minimum sentences

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The same number of senators voted for and against a motion that schedule 6 stand as printed, which means the motion failed. In other words, schedule 6 - which dealt with mandatory minimum sentences - was not supported by the majority in the Senate.

This motion was put after Queensland Senator Murray Watt (Labor) introduced a motion to oppose the schedule.

What are mandatory minimum sentences?

The bills digest explains that "[m]andatory sentencing laws specify a minimum penalty or a fixed penalty that a judge must impose in relation to a particular offence or type of offender (for example a repeat offender)." There is a lot of debate about the effectiveness of mandatory sentences - see the bills digest for more discussion.

Yes Yes (strong) Not passed

15th Jun 2020, 7:48 PM – Senate Crimes Legislation Amendment (Sexual Crimes Against Children and Community Protection Measures) Bill 2019 - in Committee - Mandatory minimum sentences

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The same number of senators voted for and against amendments (2) and (5) to (7), which means they failed. They were introduced by Tasmanian Senator Nick McKim (Greens), who explained that:

The effect of those amendments would be that the mandatory sentencing provisions in this legislation would be deleted.

Motion text

(2) Clause 2, pages 2 and 3 (table items 7 to 9), omit the table items.

[minimum sentences]

(5) Schedule 7, item 4, page 34 (lines 9 and 10), omit "described in column 1 of an item in the table in section 16AAA", substitute "covered by subsection (9)".

[bail]

(6) Schedule 7, item 4, page 34 (lines 11 and 12), omit "described in column 1 of an item in the table in subsection 16AAB(2)", substitute "covered by subsection (10)".

[bail]

(7) Schedule 7, item 4, page 36 (after line 16), at the end of section 15AAA, add:

(9) This subsection covers offences against provisions of the Criminal Code listed in the following table: [see Hansard for the table]

(10) This subsection covers offences against provisions of the Criminal Code listed in the following table: [see Hansard for the table]

No No (strong) 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 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