Australia’s Aboriginal Referendum Defeated

On Saturday, 14 October 2023, Australians voted in a referendum about whether to change the country’s constitution to recognise the First Peoples of Australia by establishing a body called the […]
Published on October 20, 2023

On Saturday, 14 October 2023, Australians voted in a referendum about whether to change the country’s constitution to recognise the First Peoples of Australia by establishing a body called the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice. The government described it as a method for aboriginal peoples to advise the Australian Parliament on issues that affected their lives.

The referendum did not pass.

It was defeated in every state except the government-dominated Canberra area, winning only 39 percent of the vote. Critics said it would divide Australians along racial lines and seized on the fact the referendum would have expanded a divisive racially based bureaucracy.

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