A Most Disorderly Parliament, Australia's Naughtiest MPs And Governments Named

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The governments of Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard government were the naughtiest since federation in 1901.

This is measured on the disorderly behaviour recorded on the floor of parliament as the Speaker hands out disciplinary action.

And the MP most disciplined since 1901 is Christopher Pyne, the current Education Minister in the Coalition government.

He’s been sin binned 43 times and suspended twice.

Second is former deputy prime minister Anthony Albanese. He’s been suspended four times and sin binned 30.

Here’s the ten most disciplined MPs:

The most common cause for disciplinary action is interjecting while another member is speaking, the second disorderly conduct.

Other sins include: raising frivolous points of order; Defying or disregarding the authority of the Speaker; refusing to resume their seat; refusing to withdraw a remark or expression.

After the 2010 election and before the independent MPs had agreed to support Julia Gillard in the formation of a Labor Government for the 43rd Parliament, Opposition Leader Tony Abbott said:

“I think we can have a kinder, gentler polity. I think we can be a more collegial polity than we’ve been. I think that the spirit of Parliament has been needlessly confrontational, especially over the last three years.”

However, the 43rd Parliament turned out to be the worst on record, according to a study by the Parliamentary Library.

The percentage of sitting weeks during which at least one member received disciplinary action increased from 74.5% in the 38th Parliament (the first Howard government) to 95.9% during the 43rd Parliament.

Under Labor the number of disciplinary actions was 223 compared to 129 under the Howard governments.

Overall, Labor members have been disciplined on 716 occasions (54.2%) and Coalition members on 605(45.8%).

This probably reflects the fact that Labor has been in opposition 66 per cent of the time since federation in 1901.

Opposition members tend to get disciplined more often. Perhaps they are trying hard to score points against the government.

However, if you adjust for the fact that the Coalition has spend far less time in Opposition, you could say the the Coalition gets disciplined more.

Under this view, the Parliamentary Library says the “Coalition is disciplined or causes itself to be disciplined 35% more than would be expected by the percentage of time they have spent in Opposition”.

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