Bleijie hits back at Wellington over electoral review paper

Queensland Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie
Queensland Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie Cade Mooney

ATTORNEY-GENERAL Jarrod Bleijie has hit out at  Nicklin MP Peter Wellington over his comments on a review of electoral procedures in Queensland.

Mr Wellington was reported yesterday as launching an attack on the LNP green paper on electoral reform, saying its contemplation of an end to compulsory voting was "a desperate attempt to hold on to power" which would lead to vote buying.

He has established an online "E" petition demanding compulsory voting be retained and has called on his constituents to write directly to the Premier on the issue.

Mr Bleijie said it was evident from Mr Wellington's comments that he did not understand the concept of a discussion paper.

"Mr Wellington's misguided views on the reason the Government has released this paper are flat out wrong," Mr Bleijie said.

"When we were elected in March last year, the Newman Government promised an open and accountable government.

"Our electoral reform discussion paper honours that commitment and lets Queenslanders have their say on ways to improve our democracy.

"For their own political purposes, senior Labor figures and others have been quick to jump on one of the issues raised: should voting in Queensland elections be compulsory?

"Interestingly in 2009 those same senior Labor figures released their own discussion paper asking the very same question.

"Our discussion paper canvases the arguments for and against - exactly as a discussion paper is supposed to do.

"These predictable attacks which accuse the government of attempting to deprive Queenslanders of their rights at the ballot box couldn't be further from the truth.

"What could be more democratic than asking Queenslanders to tell us how they think the State should be run?

"It's time to take a fresh look at our electoral system to make sure it meets our high standards of integrity and accountability; that it ensures Queenslanders have their voices heard and that it embodies the community's expectations."

Mr Bleije said the discussion paper released last week covered all facets of the Electoral Act including compulsory voting.

"The paper covers a range of other important issues in our democracy," he said.

"For example: should we require instant disclosure of donations, or in this modern world should people have to go to a polling booth to vote?

"Other topics in the paper include whether elections should be publicly funded, whether there is enough accountability in political advertising and whether we should introduce online voting.

"It would be negligent of the Government to stifle debate on any aspect of the system, something critics will never admit.

"We will engage fully with the community before we even consider implementing reforms, just as we did when we made changes to the way local government is run.

"That's a novel concept in Queensland, especially after almost 20 years of Labor pushing through any changes to electoral laws that their campaign strategists demanded.

"I will not pre-empt the outcome of feedback, and I encourage people to look at all of the important issues contained in this discussion paper.

"I welcome all input and I hope the paper continues to generate public debate - after all, that's exactly why we released it."

Queenslanders can make a submission by going to the Discussion Paper's webpage at

Submissions close on March 1.

Topics:  jarrod bleijie peter wellington

Former Scout leader pleads guilty to child porn charges

Brock Dittman.

Brock Emil Dittman pleaded guilty to accessing child porn.

10 ways to manage exam stress

Boonah State High School students from left, Tahlia Wilson, Tess Wimmer, Natalie Milligan and Luke Pressler cram in some last minute study leading into their final exams.

Four students who are going through end of year exams offer practical advice

Is Woolworths departure good news for Ipswich CBD?

Artist impression of the Ipswich Mall for the rejuvenation project to be undertaken by Ipswich City Properties

Council is on track to release a detailed plan before December

Local Partners

Workmates honour crash victim with tribute

UPDATE: Tanya Lyell is being remembered as a young mother dedicated to her family and work as the town she called home mourns its loss.

WATCH: NASA space station is live, see the view from above

In this picture taken from NASA's International Space Station from April 2015, the SpaceX Dragon is captured with the 57.7-foot-long Canadarm2 robotic arm before its installation to the Harmony module.

See the world from a new perspective as space station passes Rocky

Artist feeds us pop straight from heart

FEED THE BEAST: Singer-songwriter Emma Dean is this week's featured artist.

Emerge's Calen Le Couteur recently caught up with Emma Dean

Your guide to a great night out in Ipswich

Dennis Knight and the Black Cats play Club Services Ipswich Saturday night

Check out some live entertainment this weekend

Jake left broken-hearted by Bachelorette break-up

Jake Ellis is one of the final three bachelors on The Bachelorette.

GEORGIA chooses Lee and Matty J as her final two suitors.

MOVIE REVIEW: Doctor Strange is out there in a good way

Benedict Cumberbatch in a scene from the movie Doctor Strange.

MARVEL'S new superhero takes viewers along on his mind trip.

MOVIE REVIEW: Jack Reacher sequel falls flat

Tom Cruise in a scene from the movie Jack Reacher: Never Go Back.

THE film's title Never Go Back should serve as a warning to fans.

The Bachelor contestants find love with each other

Former Bachelor contestants Megan Marx and Tiffany Scanlon have confirmed their relationship on social media.

MEGAN Marx and Tiffany Scanlon confirm relationship on Instagram.

Liam Payne wants to wed Cheryl Fernandez-Versini

Cheryl Fernandez-Versini and Liam Payne

Liam Payne reportedly wants to marry Cheryl Fernandez-Versini

Bindi Irwin 'honoured' to make MAXIM HOT 100 list

Wildlife Warrior named among Australia's most beautiful women

Tough times in CBD: Woolies says goodbye Ipswich

Woolworths in the Ipswich Mall.Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times

The last day of trading will be January 1

Is Woolworths departure good news for Ipswich CBD?

Artist impression of the Ipswich Mall for the rejuvenation project to be undertaken by Ipswich City Properties

Council is on track to release a detailed plan before December

Look at me! Kath and Kim home up for sale

Kath and Kim from the iconic Aussie TV series.

'Crack open the Baileys and grab a box of BBQ Shapes'

How to fit 100,000 new homes on the Coast

Property, real estate, housing, suburb,  August 2016

Fitting 2m extra people in south-east Qld in 25 years a balance

Hinterland horse stud passed in for $8.25 million

UNREAL: This Maleny estate is incredible.

12-bedroom hinterland horse stud still available

Hit songwriter's Noosa mansion on market

SPECIAL PLACE: The Cintamani estate is going to tender, marketed by Tom Offermann Real Estate.

Is this Queensland's best property?