How Kerry O'Brien voted compared to someone who believes that staff of government agencies should need a warrant before being able to access the telecommunications records of citizens

Division Kerry O'Brien Supporters vote Division outcome

20th Sep 2007, 7:53 PM – Senate Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Amendment Bill 2007 — In Committee — Require judicial warrants

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The majority disagreed that law enforcement agencies should have to get a judicial warrant before accessing telecommunications data about a communication (rather than its actual content). This data includes data on who is sending and receiving a particular communication, the date and time it was sent and how long a communication lasted.

This requirement for a warrant was proposed by Senator Natasha Stott Despoja (see her explanation of this amendment).

Background to the bill

The bill introduces a second group of recommendations made by the Review of the Regulation of Access to Communications (known as the Blunn Report). In particular, the bill transfers key security and law enforcement provisions from the Telecommunications Act 1997 to the Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Act 1979.

These provisions relate to access to telecommunications data, which is information about a communication rather than its content and includes data on the sending and receiving parties, and the date, time and duration of the communication. The bill also proposes a new two-tier access regime for access to historic and ‘prospective’ telecommunications data (read more about the bill in its bills digest.)

absent Yes (strong) Not passed by a large majority

How "never voted" is worked out

Normally a person's votes count towards a score which is used to work out a simple phrase to summarise their position on a policy. However in this case Kerry O'Brien was absent during all divisions for this policy. So, it's impossible to say anything concrete other than that they have "never voted" on this policy.