Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Disclaimer: The Parliamentary Library does not warrant the accuracy of closed captions. These are derived automatically from the broadcaster's signal.
Coalition MPs approve changes to key bills -

View in ParlViewView other Segments

(generated from captions) from his party room The PM has secured agreement industrial relations on the controversial and counter-terrorism legislation. After agreeing to some ammendments, by Coalition MPs and senators. the bills were approved The PM is now hopeful through Parliament before christmas. the legislation will pass

says Nationals senator Barnaby Joyce before locking in his vote, he'll hold out to the end but he's happy with the changes to the workplace laws and says he's got what he wanted. Sally Sara reports from Canberra. It's just way the Prime Minister was hoping to finish the year - the Coalition party room

has given it's backing to the industrial relations and counter-terrorism legislation after the Government agreed to some changes. The Government has been able to accept some amendments, but in no way has the Government compromised the thrust of either pieces of legislation. This is the man who could decide whether the industrial relations legislation gets through the Senate. It now looks like he'll vote 'yes'. Barnaby Joyce won't give a final answer, but he says he's got what he wanted. That would be a fair statement, but you always have to be careful that doesn't preclude your right to call for minor adjustments that become apparent right up to the very end. Well, I am a cautious man, as you know, and I always respect the democratic processes of the upper house. I'm hopeful that it will go through. Senator Joyce has got several amendments he was after, including: ...for workers not covered by other agreements. Barnaby Joyce has got nothing.

He's been sold a pup. And I suspect, on this occasion, he knows it. Last week, the Queensland Nationals staged a revolt in State Parliament to demonstrate their opposition to the bill. But, Barnaby Joyce is confident he has done enough to keep them on side. I think they will be quite happy, to be not too blunt about it, to say that the Queensland Nationals or the National Party saved Christmas. It's not the kind of Christmas the unions were hoping for. They say Barnaby Joyce is only tinkering at the edges and the bill should be thrown out. But he says it's up to workers to decide whether their lives will change for better or worse. If their life has got decidedly worse, well, we will see the ramifications of the IR policy up close, but I don't think that will be the case. While Barnaby Joyce focuses on the amendments

to the industrial relations legislation, the Government has also made changes to its counter-terrorism laws. It's taken on board some of the suggestions put forward by the Senate. A Coalition-dominated Senate committee recommended more than 50 changes to the legislation, including a five-year sunset clause and the removal of sedition laws. But both of those demands have been knocked back. The sunset clause will stay at 10 years with a 5-year review, and the sedition laws will remain, but will be reviewed early next year. In the meantime, the sedition law, in the form in which it will now take, is sufficiently hedged and guarded by safeguards and expanded defences

to remove any doubt anybody could possibly have that political speech and political commentary could be effected. Labor says the extra safeguards won't be enough. We think it's just crazy to try to turn a law that was designed to protect kings and queens of Britain

to use it as a tool to fight terrorism in the 21st century. But it seems the Government will have its way - the PM is hopeful the counter-terrorism and industrial relations changes will be through the Parliament before Christmas. Sally Sara, Lateline.