QLD delivers Coalition friendlier Senate

By Leith van Onselen

The Morrison Government could potentially have 35 seats in the new Senate, which means it would require the support of only four crossbenchers to pass legislation in the upper house. The Liberal-National Party appears set to have three Queensland seats in the Senate, while Labor is likely to have just one. This would represent federal Labor’s worse performance in Queensland since 1949. From The Australian:

The Coalition… is on track to pick up three Senate seats in every state and in a best-case scenario could control 35 votes in the upper house, meaning it would need the support of just four crossbenchers to pass legislation. This would significantly bolster Scott Morrison’s power in the Senate…

In the 45th parliament the Coalit­ion had 30 senators and had to wrangle a crossbench that at one stage grew to 12 independents…

The new crossbench is likely to include One Nation leader Pauline Hanson and fellow Queensland colleague Malcolm Roberts, ­Centre Alliance senators Stirling Griff and Rex Patrick, former Tasmanian­ senator Jacqui Lambie and the Australian Conservatives’ Cory Bernardi…

As noted above, the Senate crossbench grew to a record 12 senators in the last parliament, and regularly held the previous Coalition policy agenda hostage when the government failed to win support of Labor or the Greens.

It’s path will be much clearer after the weekend’s election, with the Coalition’s high income tax cuts now a real possibility of being passed, even amid ongoing opposition from Labor and the Greens.

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