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Jacqui Lambie: "Do the right bloody thing"

JACQUI Lambie has sensationally claimed there are "more people going down" in the citizenship scandal consuming Australian politics.

Speaking on the ABC's Q&A program last night, Ms Lambie said MPs who have yet to be publicly named in the scandal have privately told her they're "in trouble".

Ms Lambie also addressed her own future in politics. She broke down in Parliament last week while announcing her resignation from the Senate after discovering she held dual citizenship.

"It is not pleasant up there," she said of Canberra last night.

"I've renounced. I'm ready to go. Bring it on. I don't know what else you want me to say."

Importantly, she predicted, there are more politicians set to fall from grace.

"There's a lot more people going down than what they're saying," she said, describing meetings with politicians she "won't name" who approached her saying, "I think I'm in
trouble."

"They haven't even been mentioned in the paper. That is a problem. We need to know what's going on. If the Parliament is in turmoil, it needs to be dissolved and we need to go back to an election.

"I'm very happy for you to get marriage equality but who is running the economy and the country?"

Ms Lambie said the citizenship saga has hurt the Turnbull government badly, and called for a new election.

"We've got all these people with dual citizenship. Sad thing is a lot of parliamentarians know who they are and it takes 24 hours to get confirmation from the UK. If you're having debates about the UK and you know who you are, do the right bloody thing and put it in and resign, like the rest of us have done, because that's the right thing to do and that's leadership."

'THIS IS YOUR PROBLEM'

Ms Lambie took aim at her fellow politicians again when the issue of asylum seekers came up.

"Some people have already died because you guys let those boats come in for so long," she said, gesturing at Labor MP Brendan O'Connor and Greens senator Janet Rice.

"This is your problem. You started it. Let's be honest about that."

Mr O'Connor defended his party's position against claims it is too tough, citing the deaths of asylum seekers at sea.

"Let me tell you something, when a boat foundered against the rocks on Christmas Island and people perished, I was involved in setting up a temporary morgue and saw men, women and children, bodies in that," Mr O'Connor said.

"We have to find a way to stop people embarking on unseaworthy vessels where they kill themselves. That's why I don't bring righteousness into this debate."

40% OF AUSSIES 'HURTING' OVER SAME-SEX SURVEY OUTCOME

Ms Lambie lashed out in favour of the No voters of the same-sex marriage survey, saying there are "40 per cent of Australians hurting right now".

The outgoing Independent Senator for Tasmania was in fine form on the ABC TV program Q&A on Monday night, telling viewers she had received calls from voters who feel they are "in limbo" over the vote.

"You know what bothers me with Parliament, they always put in great stuff, but they don't fill in the gaps," Ms Lambie said.

"There is still 30 per cent of those Australians that lost out on that vote and they are feeling the hurt from that. I don't hear anyone talking about that which I find quite disturbing.

"Congratulations, you won. I was part of that 37 per cent that said 'no' because of my religious beliefs. I've made it very clear to Tasmanians when I was a senator if the majority voted for that, I would vote with them. That was part of my job and I have no problem with that.

"You still have nearly 40 per cent of Australians out there hurting right now. What they're worried about - people that have been ringing me that have garden weddings, they're making cakes.

"I had a bloke ring me about two weeks ago saying, 'I want to know what my rights are right now because I only want to marry a man and wife in my garden'.

"I said, 'Mate, I'm sorry, I can't help you out with that'. He's going to be in limbo for months. He has a freedom in this country and a right to say, 'because of my religious beliefs, I cannot marry you in my backyard'.

"This is what you're doing to people because you're going out there, bull at a bloody gate as politicians do and yet they haven't filled in the gaps.

How long are these people going to have to go through more pain? They've lost. They're feeling the pain. How much longer do they have to feel more pain?"

'MUSLIM BAKERS WON'T BAKE CAKES'

Labor's Brendan O'Connor defended the rights of the LGBTI community after one questioner's suggestion that conservative Australians, mainly "Muslim bakers from Bankstown" will "want the right to opt out of baking cakes for gay weddings".

The questioner claimed Christian Samoan preachers "won't want to be dragged before hate speech tribunals".

"It's critical that we do not go backwards when it comes to anti-discrimination laws," Mr O'Connor said.

"It would be absurd, offensive and ironic that we would find ourselves going backwards in discriminating against same-sex couples in order to reintroduce and qualify anti-discrimination laws that exist already in this country. So I don't accept the proposition that religious pastors or religious preachers or others who choose to marry only heterosexual couples are discriminated against."

Ms Lambie said bakers should have the right to deny a couple a wedding cake if it was at odds with their beliefs.

"We have covered the topic to death to be honest. If you do not want to marry those people, don't want to bake a cake for the other side, then you should have that right to do so. I'd like that done as quickly as possible. I don't see that happening at the end of the year, I'll be honest with you."

'WE'RE DOING IT FOR HER'

Meanwhile, Christian radio broadcaster Stephen O'Doherty criticised the idea there was "more protection now for people based on their sexuality".

"The amendments (to the marriage bill) that myself and my colleagues want are precisely to protect that young woman and anybody else who wants to simply express a view about marriage and not be punished for it," he said, referring to an 18-year-old who was let go as a contractor by for posting a Facebook profile picture with a filter saying "It's OK to vote no".

"The same protections that are afforded to people for sexuality ought to be afforded to people who hold religious views."

RELIGIOUS RIGHTS OVER SAME-SEX MARRIAGE

Attorney-General George Brandis said the Government was "determined" to pass the bill through parliament so that "We have same-sex marriage by Christmas".

He rejected claims that gay marriage would affect religious freedoms, but kept the Government's promise that "the debate on the amendments will not derogate from the decision of the people, nor will they delay its enactment by the Parliament."

"It will do no harm to have a declaratory statement in the bill ... to the effect that nothing in the bill can limit or take away from a person's right to manifest their religious faiths by worship, practice observance or teaching which was the language of the covenant.

" If we introduce those words, they'll make no difference whatsoever to the right of same-sex people to marry but they might provide a level of reassurance for those who were not convinced to vote Yes."

Greens Senator for Victoria Janet Rice said: "We voted for equality. Australians voted for equality, not further discrimination. And so I actually am very concerned about the push by people trying to use marriage equality as a bit of a Trojan horse to try and entrench further discrimination against LBGTIQ people."

Parliament was scheduled to resume next Monday but Mr Turnbull put that off for a week to ensure the same-sex marriage legislation gets through the Senate.
 

- youngma@news.com.au

Topics:  editors picks jacqui lambie qanda same-sex marriage

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