Last day of Parliament sees Morrison dismissing Tudge, Hunt resign, key bills stalling

The policy will abandon a previous election pledge on fuel standards over fears of a possible coalition oil price scare campaign.

With both sides preparing new lines of attack for the campaign, Labor took advantage of Question Time to blame the government for the higher costs to working families, saying household gasoline costs had increased to $ 900 in one year while real wages had fallen by $ 700.

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Mr Morrison hit back with a list of products and services that have fallen in prices over the past three years or increased at lower rates than in a similar period when Labor was in power, saying this included electricity , fuel, clothing, communications and housing. .

“Our strong economic management will always ensure that Australians are better off than they would be under the Labor Party, and they will be able to keep more of what they earn,” Mr Morrison said.

The demand signaled a campaign speech based on tax cuts, but Mr Albanese pointed to a series of upheavals in parliament over the past fortnight, including liberals and nationals crossing over against the government, to claim that Mr. Morrison had lost the ability to govern.

With another rebellion in sight, the government scrapped plans to put its religious freedom proposal to a vote in the House of Representatives on Thursday because Liberal MPs including Bridget Archer, Warren Entsch and Trent Zimmerman wanted more time.

The delay means the religious discrimination law is unlikely to be passed before the election, with Liberals at odds over the impact on gay and lesbian Australians and Labor waiting until they see the results of an investigation to report on February 4, leaving a few sitting weeks. to vote on the bill even if the elections are held in May.

Seeking to convince more liberals to the plan, the PM added a provision to remove section 38 (3) of the Gender Discrimination Act, removing an exemption that allows religious schools to suspend or expel students LGBTQI.

The offer was a victory for four Liberals who pushed for the change – Katie Allen, Angie Bell, Fiona Martin and Dave Sharma – and will be kept as part of the package when debate resumes next year.

A separate exemption will remain, however, so that religious schools can hire or fire teachers and other workers on the basis of their sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital or relationship status.

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Christian Schools Australia has rejected plans to change student rules to pass the Religious Discrimination Act, saying “shady backroom deals” should not undermine the ability to teach in accordance with a religious faith.

The association said there were “reasonable expectations on student behavior” and that the government should continue its previous plan to review exemptions over the next year.

Equality Australia said exemptions for LGBTQI students should be removed as soon as possible, but the religious discrimination law should be opposed or delayed.

“If MPs care about preserving protections for marginalized communities, they must oppose this religious discrimination bill or at least send it to an inquiry for consideration before debating it,” said Anna Brown. , Head of Equality Australia.

The government failed to introduce its bill to establish a Commonwealth Integrity Commission and dropped its bill requiring voter identification in elections, as part of a deal with the Labor Party which adopted new rules allowing political activists, including some charities, to disclose their expenses.

The government has demanded progress on the Crimes (Remission of Sentences) Bill, which has been passed by the Senate and will prevent authorities from reducing sentences for terrorist offenders and anyone else subject to criminal justice. sentence under federal law.

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