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There is a big question over whether Malcolm Turnbull can keep control of the same-sex marriage debate. Richard Wainwright/AAP

Showdown on same-sex marriage looming within the Liberals

If the push for change lost in the Liberal party room, would the rebels abide by the decision, or would they cross the floor when, for example, there was a move by Labor for a vote in parliament?
Ian Macfarlane, who was industry minister in two Coalition governments, is retiring from politics. Lukas Coch/AAP

Ian Macfarlane joins those exiting at the election

Former cabinet minister in the Howard and Abbott governments Ian Macfarlane has announced he will quit parliament at the election.
Tim Wilson sympathises with the government’s aim of finding ways to tackle the national security threat posed by foreign fighters, but has reservations about the method. AAP/Mick Tsikas

Government’s own ‘freedom commissioner’ Tim Wilson questions citizenship plan

It’s awkward for the government – but very good for the public debate – that the Coalition’s citizenship-stripping initiative coincides with the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta. Next Monday’s birthday…
Federal attorney-general George Brandis wants to champion a ‘classical liberal’ approach to human rights, but what does this actually mean? AAP/Daniel Munoz

What is a ‘classical liberal’ approach to human rights?

Tim Wilson, Australia’s Human Rights Commissioner, has announced that he will take a “classical liberal” approach to human rights. There is a fair degree of confusion about what this means. Classical liberalism…
Attorney-General George Brandis has no qualms about “shackling” free speech to protect property, hence his presence at a copyright forum this month, yet he rejects other constraints. AAP/Alan Porritt

Free speech: what it is and what it isn’t

Tim Wilson has finally taken up his post as Human Rights Commissioner after controversy about his appointment late last year. Many questioned the suitability of a candidate without relevant legal-administrative…

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