Published: Sat, August 19, 2017
Markets | By Terence Owen

Parliament in crisis as dual citizenship saga deepens

While Australian Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce turned out to be a New Zealand dual citizen, social media users are joking about what Amber Heard and Johnny Depp might think.

"Growing up, my parents always told me that I was not a dual citizen", Nash said.

"As Senator Nash admitted, she has known since Monday that she was a dual citizen, yet waited until one minute before the Senate rose for a two week break to inform the Parliament", she said.

She is the third Turnbull government minister whose case will be referred to the High Court, along with Joyce and former minister Matt Canavan.

But Nash said she would not step down as a Cabinet minister until the High Court ruled whether she should be disqualified.

Desperate to cling to office, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull today repeated his assertion that the High Court will declare the three ministers eligible to remain in parliament.

Not only has the government's one-seat majority in the House of Representatives possibly been erased by the prima facie ineligibility of Joyce, a member of the lower house.

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Another Australian politician has became engulfed in the country's dual citizenship crisis after discovering she is a British citizen, putting further pressure on the conservative government as the matter is passed to the high court.

They're just numbers on a growing list of MPs who are being blindsided by the revelation of previously unknown dual-citizenships, including the Greens' Scott Ludlum and Larissa Waters, and One Nation's Malcolm Roberts, who was in the process of renouncing his British citizenship a year ago at the same time as he was confirming his 100% Aussie citizenship here.

"There's this argument that because my father came to Australia when Cyprus was still a British colony that somehow I get British citizenship".

"This is simply not good enough". The remainder of the politicians who may be in breach of the Constitution are from the Senate.

Last night Turnbull called an urgent cabinet meeting before Nash made her announcement to the Senate just before parliament adjourned for two weeks.

The Prime Minister can ask the Governor-General to discontinue the session of Parliament, but at this point it's unlikely he'd want to do that.

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