The makeup of Australia’s Federal Parliament remained in limbo, this time over the appointment of the Speaker of the House.
Independent Rob Oakshott’s bid for the job has been backed by Prime Minster Julia Gillard but has received the thumbs down from Tony Abbott who has supported the reinstatement of current speaker Harry Jenkins.
Sinead Butler reports.
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Rob Oakeshott’s decision to back a minority Labor government was rewarded today, with Julia Gillard supporting his proposal to become speaker.
It comes after the Government sought legal advice about the move.
Concerns were raised over the workability of Parliament, if the Independent was to maintain his position as MP.
Constitutional experts have confirmed there’s no legal-bar to his appointment.
But his desire to “make a difference” as speaker hasn’t won support from the Opposition, who prefer the current speaker Harry Jenkins.
Tony Abbott, Opposition Leader: “You’d think that the simplest thing would be for the incumbent speaker to continue in the role.”
Talk of a potential $100,000 pay rise has prompted Mr Oakeshott to deny that money was the reason behind his push for the Speakers role.
A move that has also received support from fellow Independent Tony Windsor.
Sinead Butler, QUT News.