Another Australian lawmaker may be out in citizenship crisis

Casey Dawson
November 3, 2017

Australian Senate President Stephen Parry confirmed Wednesday he is a British dual citizen due to his United Kingdom -born father and said he will resign.

Astonishingly, Parry, a senator since 2004, only sought formal advice from British authorities on Monday, more than three months after the issue first emerged when senators Ludlam and then Waters announced their resignations in mid-July.

The role of senate president is to preside over Australia's upper house.

Another Australian lawmaker says he may have to quit Parliament because of dual citizenship, days after a High Court ruling was thought to have finished the crisis.

It means that Senator Parry is now the eighth person to be caught up in the scandal.

Last Friday, Australia's High Court ruled that five of the seven MPs and Senators accused of breaching Section 44 of the constitution were ineligible to sit in parliament, including former Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce and former government minister Fiona Nash.

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Joyce, who has since renounced his New Zealand citizenship, will have to win a by-election in his seat of New England in order to return to parliament.

"The onus is on all senators and members to satisfy themselves of their circumstances and I encouraged Senator Parry to do so".

"We now have a High Court decision which clarifies Section 44 (of the constitution) and every person has responsibility to ensure they're eligible", she said on Wednesday.

On Sunday, before Mr Parry's dual citizenship status was revealed, Attorney-General George Brandis said he had no knowledge of any others inside the government who could have dual citizenship concerns. "I believe the High Court has made it abundantly clear what action is required".

Turnbull has flagged potential changes to the constitution, noting that more than half of Australia's population of 24 million was either born overseas or has a parent who was born overseas.

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