How Penny Wright voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should introduce restrictions to the amount and type of donations that political parties can receive in order to prevent corruption or the appearance of corruption in government

Division Penny Wright Supporters vote Division outcome

19th Mar 2015, 11:28 AM – Senate Motions — Ban donations to political parties from mining and coal seam gas (CSG) companies

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Senator Lee Rhiannon moved:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

  • (i) the New South Wales Labor Party recently received a political donation from coal seam gas company Santos Ltd,

  • (ii) the New South Wales Labor Party subsequent to taking the donation, returned $2 200 to Santos Ltd acknowledging this money would cause community doubt that Labor was committed to a coal seam gas free north coast,

  • (iii) in the recent New South Wales leaders' debate the Labor leader, Mr Luke Foley, failed to rule out coal seam gas development if Labor formed government with his statement that there is a role for gas in the state's energy future, and

  • (iv) the Federal Labor Party received more than $90 000 from Santos Ltd in the 2012 13 and 2013 14 financial years; and

(b) calls on the Federal Government to:

  • (i) ban political donations from mining and coal seam gas companies, and

  • (ii) end coal seam gas and coal mining on agricultural land and associated water resources.

Yes Yes Not passed by a modest majority

3rd Dec 2013 – Senate Motions - Political Donations - Disclosure and ban on overseas donations

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon, which means that it was unsuccessful.

Wording of the motion

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) political donations for the 2013 federal election made on or after 1 July 2013 will not be made public until 1 February 2015,

(ii) political donations under $12 400 do not have to be disclosed by parties or candidates to the Australian Electoral Commission, and

(iii) this higher disclosure threshold level means the public is not aware of the details of a large number of political donations received by political parties; and

(b) calls for:

(i) a donation disclosure threshold of $1 000,

(ii) a ban on overseas donations,

(iii) a $50 cap on anonymous donations,

(iv) donations to different branches of a political party to be accumulated and treated as donations to the same party in order to stop political parties minimising their disclosure obligations by donation splitting,

(v) 6-monthly disclosure of donations and political expenditure, and

(vi) online disclosure of donations over $1 000 in the 3 months prior to an election or from when the election is called.

Yes Yes 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 2 20 20
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 0 0 0
Total: 20 20

*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 = 20 / 20 = 100%.

And then