Questions and answers about the proposed First Nations Voice to Parliament

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Questions and answers about the proposed First Nations Voice to Parliament

4.    Questions and responses

Introduction

This chapter responds to questions that have been raised during the Voice debate. We have sought to provide clear answers that summarise the various views rather than state our own or favour any particular argument. Our aim has been to facilitate access to the main ideas in order to support people in making their own informed decision on how to vote.

In doing this we have explored the range of published writings about the Voice, including articles, reports and academic contributions to the debate. For readers who wish to follow up particular issues, we have provided extensive footnotes, including to the many contributions that are summarised later in this book. At the same time, where we have felt that it might be helpful, we have reached beyond that literature to other scholarly works that could provide further background or context.

We have seen our role as a type of fact-checking in an intense debate where there have been claims and counterclaims. We are not claiming that the following answers are neutral, but only that they are careful and fair. We have tried to be generous to everyone participating genuinely in the debate, while leaving out or carefully qualifying claims that we consider empty or misleading.

It should be acknowledged from the outset that a problem we have faced is that while there is certainly a vigorous No campaign, the arguments against the Voice have not been developed with the same consistency and depth as those in favour of it. This has meant that the positive writings are sometimes more heavily footnoted in our responses. Nevertheless, we have tried hard to represent both campaigns with equal rigour and care. We have done our best to present a wide range of views and perspectives, while giving more weight to the major contributors to the debates.

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