The Greens will use their alliance with Labor to prosecute their push for same-sex marriage and liberalising the treatment of refugees by bringing forward their legislation and demanding it be debated, possibly with conscience votes, in the new parliament. Greens leader Bob Brown confirmed his intentions yesterday as the Coalition warned that a returned Labor government controlled by the Greens would be the most radical in Australian political history. In a sharp pitch to rural independents Bob Katter, Tony Windsor and Rob Oakeshott, who will determine as early as Monday whether Julia Gillard or Tony Abbott will form a government, opposition frontbenchers said the Greens would force Labor to restrict land use and abolish private health insurance subsidies.
More voters want the three rural independents to back a Labor minority government than the Coalition. As the three incumbent independents -- Tony Windsor, Rob Oakeshott and Bob Katter -- head to a decision next Monday or Tuesday, a Newspoll survey taken at the beginning of the week suggests more voters want them to back Labor. According to the Newspoll survey of 1134 voters on Monday and Tuesday, 47 per cent want the ALP to get the independents' support and 39 per cent want the Coalition to form government. There is almost unanimous partisan support among voters for the party they supported being given the support of the independents and the minor parties.
Dutch anti-Islam MP Geert Wilders, the country's most heavily guarded politician, has denounced an Australian Muslim cleric's reported call for his beheading for denigrating Islam. "This is really terrible news and a very serious threat, unfortunately," the firebrand politician told AFP by email in response to the threat reported in the popular Dutch daily De Telegraaf. Wilders, who campaigns for an end to Muslim immigration and a ban on the building of new mosques and the Koran in a bid to end the "Islamisation" of the Netherlands, has been under 24-hour protection since 2004. According to De Telegraaf, Sydney-born Muslim cleric Sheik Feiz Mohamed called on extremists in an internet chatroom to "chop off his head" and accused Wilders of "denigrating" Islam.
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January 23, 2018
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