Calls for Voice referendum to be abandoned as 'Yes' vote tanks

Opposition Leader Peter Dutton urges government to abandon referendum if uncertain of success, warning of potential harm to reconciliation as vote threatens to divide nation.

Calls for Voice referendum to be abandoned as 'Yes' vote tanks
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Opposition Leader Peter Dutton has cautioned the federal government to reconsider its plans for the Voice to Parliament referendum if it lacks confidence in the success of the 'Yes' campaign.

In recent months, support for the Voice to Parliament has tanked with multiple polls revealing the 'Yes' vote is in serious trouble.

A survey of over 4,000 Rebel News viewers has shown that 95% of respondents don't support the controversial constitutional change.

Expressing concerns over potential damage to reconciliation, Dutton criticised the government's handling of the Voice, describing it as a deceptive scheme.

Earlier this week, the Liberal Party expressed broad support for legislation establishing the referendum, slated to take place in the final months of the current year. However, the Coalition has long opposed the Voice, advocating instead for constitutional recognition of Indigenous Australians without a constitutionally-ensh

In parliament, Dutton argued that if there was a possibility of failure, the referendum should not proceed.

"If the prime minister is pushing for a constitutional change that he believes will fail, thus hindering reconciliation, it is the prime minister's responsibility to halt this course of action," he asserted.

"The best possible outcome, as predicted by many pundits and experts observing this debate, is a nation divided equally down the middle. Any prime minister should take the lead in preventing such a scenario."

While the date for the poll remains undetermined, it must take place before the year's end.

Throughout the week, the Coalition utilised Question Time to press the government on the Voice's scope of advisory power, raising questions about Australia Day and the Reserve Bank. Indigenous Affairs Minister Linda Burney mostly refrained from engaging in specifics, claiming that while the Voice could offer advice, the authority to enact legislation resides solely with the parliament.

Burney criticised the intention behind some of the questions, asserting that the debate surrounding the Voice should not be reduced to "culture wars."

In response to the opposition leader's suggestions, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese accused Dutton of attempting to "cause confusion and sow division."

"For 122 years, decisions about Aboriginal people have been made without Aboriginal people," he stated.

"With the best intentions, we have overseen an expensive, well-intentioned failure. This is our opportunity, after 122 years of doing things for Indigenous Australians, to do things with Indigenous Australians."

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