The Next Conscience Vote


Media Release: Sent to the Office of The Hon John Howard MP, 31 March 2006

People’s movement urges Prime Minister to allow conscience vote on Wallaby Halfback

In the wake of the Senate’s recent vote on RU486, two online communities, and today urged Prime Minister John Winston Howard to allow a conscience vote on the halfback and captaincy of the Australian Wallabies. is a part of the next generation of sports websites it is run by fans, for fans and the Prime Minister would do well to listen.

‘Everything with a pulse knows that the Prime Minister has been protecting George Gregan for years,’ said political consultant and Australian cultural icon Whittaker Chambers II.

‘We all know that Section 51(xxix) of the Australian Constitution grants the Australian Parliament the power to make laws for œthe peace, order, and good government of the Commonwealth with respect to External Affairs.  I would be very surprised if the High Court didn’t see this as falling within that head of power.

‘It is hurting the country and it is hurting the sport. Our current account deficit has blown out to AUD$13,530 million, and we lost 3 out of 4 games on the recent tour of the United Kingdom. Our prosperity and pride is at stake.

‘It is time the Prime Minister remembered that Australia is a sportocracy not an autocracy.

‘If RU486 is important enough to warrant a conscience vote, then this issue surely deserves one. We could call the vote œARU486  if that helps people concentrate.

‘Arguably Chris Whittaker has been as good, if not streets ahead of Gregan for years. It seems that the Prime Minister’s patronage has stopped a serious debate in the legislature on this matter.

‘C’mon, John, let the Parliament decide!’

For more information about this movement, visit

About the Author

Whittaker Chambers II is a lawyer, lecturer and outside breakaway

Launched in 2004, New Matilda is one of Australia's oldest online independent publications. It's focus is on investigative journalism and analysis, with occasional smart arsery thrown in for reasons of sanity. New Matilda is owned and edited by Walkley Award and Human Rights Award winning journalist Chris Graham.