How Chris Ellison voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should introduce legislation that increases consumer protections by, for example, encouraging competition

Division Chris Ellison Supporters vote Division outcome

12th Nov 2008, 11:38 AM – Senate National Fuelwatch (Empowering Consumers) Bill 2008 and related bill — Second Reading — Read a second time

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An equal number of senators voted in favour and against the motion to read the bills for a second time,(Read more about the stages that a bill must pass through to become law here. ) which means that it was unsuccessful and that the bills will not be considered any further.

Background to the bills

This National Fuelwatch (Empowering Consumers) Bill 2008 was introduced along with the National Fuelwatch (Empowering Consumers) (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2008 to establish a National Fuelwatch Scheme, which would be created and administered by by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).(Read more about the Scheme on ABC News here. ) The National Fuelwatch Scheme would require petrol retailers "to notify the ACCC of their next day’s fuel prices by 2 pm each day and maintain this notified price for a 24-hour period from 6 am the next day".(Read more about the bill, including its explanatory memorandum, here. )

The National Fuelwatch Scheme was proposed in response to an ACCC inquiry into the price of unleaded petrol, which found that:

  • there is an imbalance in fuel pricing information between petrol retailers and consumers at the retail level; and
  • consumers' capacity to take advantage of the lowest prices is limited by intraday fuel price changes (sometimes as often as three or four times per day).(Read more about the ACCC's inquiry in the explanatory memorandum.)
No Yes (strong) Not passed

How "voted very strongly against" 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 1 0 50
MP absent 0 0 0
Less important votes (10 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 0 0 0
Total: 0 50

*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 = 0 / 50 = 0.0%.

And then