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“It’s not the taxpayer’s responsibility”: David Flint on dual citizenship

Michael McLaren

With the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters recommending that section 44 of the Constitution be repealed or amended, Professor David Flint is contesting how the dual citizenship fiasco has been handled.

Professor Flint says an “ originalist interpretation” should have been applied to section 44, which would have seen the Parliament decide the fate of dual citizens, not the High Court.

“This could have cleaned it up quite simply, not cost a lot of money and not paralysed the Parliament for months,” he explained

The prospect of Australian taxpayers footing the $1.5 million by-election bill also didn’t sit well with Flint, who denounced the current arrangement as”completely unfair.”

“People deciding that they are going into politics should have exercised some care.”

“I think it’s a terrible thing that the public has to pay for the High Court costs and the by-elections. It’s the politician’s responsibility, not the taxpayers.”

With speculation on the likelihood of a referendum mounting, Professor Flint isn’t predicting any success should the matter be voted on by the Australian public.

“I don’t think it would get through. There is a strong view in the electorate that you should have a single allegiance to Australia. I don’t think Australia would like to see their politicians with dual allegiance.”

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Michael McLaren
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