Kevin Andrews (Australian politician)

Kevin Andrews (Australian politician)

Infobox Politician
honorific-prefix = The Honourable

name = Kevin Andrews

honorific-suffix =BA, LLB (Melb), LLM (Monash)

| caption = Kevin Andrews MP
birth_date =Birth date and age|1955|11|9|df=y
birth_place =Sale, Victoria
death_date =
death_place =
office = Minister for Immigration and Citizenship
term_start = 30 January, 2007
term_end = 3 December, 2007
predecessor = Amanda Vanstone
successor = Chris Evans
office2 = Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations
term_start2 = 7 October, 2003
term_end2 = 30 January, 2007
predecessor2 = Tony Abbott
successor2 = Joe Hockey
office3 = Member for Menzies
term_start3 = 11 May, 1991
predecessor3 = Neil Brown
party = Liberal Party of Australia
constituency3 = Menzies
majority3 = 6.02%
spouse = Margaret
religion =Roman Catholic
website = []
footnotes =

Kevin James Andrews (born 9 November 1955) is an Australian politician and member of the Liberal Party of Australia. He is a member of the House of Representatives, and was Minister for Immigration and Citizenship in the Howard Government, having previously been Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations from 7 October 2003 to 30 January 2007, during which time he implemented the unpopular WorkChoices labour market reforms. [cite web | year = 2007 | url = | title = The Hon Kevin Andrews MP, Member for Menzies (Vic) | work = House of Representatives - members - biography | publisher = Parliament of Australia | accessdate = 2007-08-22] He is now a member of the opposition backbench.

During his tenure as Immigration Minister, Andrews' handling of the Haneef affair has been criticised,cite web | url=,25197,22702747-2702,00.html | title=Andrews shifts Haneef blame | publisher="The Australian" | date=2007-11-05 | accessdate=2007-11-05] as have his comments on the need to cut the intake of refugees from Africa.

Early life

Kevin Andrews was born in Sale, Victoria, and was educated at Melbourne University where he lived at Newman College. He completed a Master of Laws (LLM) at Monash University, and practised as a barrister.

He was Co-ordinator of Continuing Legal Education for the Law Institute of Victoria from 1981 to 1983, and an Associate to Sir James Gobbo, Justice of the Supreme Court of Victoria, from 1983 to 1985.

While practising law he was involved with the St Vincent's Bioethics Centre, the Mercy Hospital for Women, the Peter MacCallum Cancer Institute, and the Lincoln School of Health Sciences.cite web | url = | title = "Hon Kevin Andrews MP" |work = Adjunct Lecturers | publisher = John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family | accessdate = 2007-11-27] He was also a board member of Caritas Christi Hospice.

Political career

Kevin Andrews was elected to the House of Representatives at a 1991 by-election for the Division of Menzies in Victoria, representing the Liberal Party of Australia.

As a backbencher, Andrews authored the "Euthanasia Laws Bill 1996" to overrule Northern Territory legislation that legalised euthanasia (the "Rights of the Terminally Ill Act 1995"). It is one of only fifteen Private Member's Bills passed into law in Australian parliamentary history.

Andrews has called for an end to trials of the RU-486 drug, and voted against a bill that took away the Health Minister's power to veto applications to allow the drug to be used. [cite web
url =
publisher = Sydney Morning Herald
title = For the biggest loser it's just bad memories
date = 2006-02-18
accessdate = 2007-10-03

In taking a stance against stem cell research in 2002, he stated that it was the "first time" that "human beings can be treated as a commodity". [cite web
url =
publisher = Australian Broadcasting Corporation
title = Politicians prepare to vote on stem cell issue
date = 2002-08-15
accessdate = 2007-08-31
] He also took a stance against stem cell research during a debate in 2006, which resulted in the overturning of a previous ban on the research. [cite web
url =,10117,20884451-29277,00.html
publisher =
title = Stem cell cloning ban overturned
date = 2006-12-06
accessdate = 2007-08-31

After the Coalition's third victory in 2001, Andrews was brought into the outer ministry as Minister for Ageing, a portfolio in which he served from 26 November 2001 to 7 October 2003. He was subsequently appointed to Cabinet as the Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations and was responsible for introducing the Howard Government's major changes to industrial relations law in 2005, commonly known as WorkChoices. In a reshuffle in early 2007, Andrews was made Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, a position which he held until the swearing-in of the First Rudd Ministry on 3 December 2007, following the defeat of the Howard Government in the 2007 election.

Kevin Andrews is a member of the Lyons Forum, a socially conservative Christian faction within the Coalition. He has served as the Forum Secretary and is credited with suggesting the name for the faction. [cite web | last = | first = | authorlink = | coauthors = | year = 1998
url = | title = The Lyons Forum | work = Censorship and Free Speech | publisher = Electronic Frontiers Australia Inc. | accessdate = 2007-08-22
] [cite web | last = Bradford | first = John | authorlink = | coauthors = | year =
url =| title = Autobiography | work = | publisher = John Bradford, former Liberal MP representing Division of McPherson | accessdate = 2007-08-22

In the 2007 Federal election, Andrews was re-elected to the seat of Menzies with a 4.96% swing toward the Labor Party.cite web | url= | title=Australian Electoral Commission summary of Menzies, Federal Election 2007. | publisher="Australian Electoral Commission" | date=2007-11-28 | accessdate=2007-11-28]

Haneef affair

As Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Andrews attracted controversy after he revoked on character grounds the visa of Dr Mohamed Haneef, who had been granted bail on charges of aiding terrorists.cite press release | title = Dr Haneef | publisher = Kevin Andrews MP, Minister for Immigration and Citizenship | date = 30 July 2007 | url = | accessdate=2007-08-22 ] [cite news |first= Renee |last= Viellaris |authorlink= |coauthors= Jason Gregory and Jasmin Lill |title= Haneef moved to prison |url=,23739,22093419-952,00.html |work= |publisher= The Courier-Mail|date= 18 July 2007 |accessdate= 2007-08-23] This was criticised as a move to keep Haneef in detention; upon posting bail, Haneef would have been transferred from Brisbane's Wolston Correctional Centre to Sydney's Villawood Detention Centre.cite news |first= Kathryn |last= Roberts |title= Lawyers launch campaign to restore Haneef's visa |url= |work= |publisher= ABC News and Current Affairs#ABC Radio programs - PM |date= 18 July 2007 |accessdate=2007-08-22 ] Andrews defended his actions as being in accordance with the "Migration Act" and Haneef's lawyers challenged his interpretation of the Act in the Federal Court. [cite news |first= Phillip |last= Coorey |authorlink= |coauthors= Joel Gibson and Craig Skehan|title= India raises concern over detention |url=|work= |publisher= Sydney Morning Herald |date= 18 July 2007 |accessdate= 2007-08-22 ]

After the Director of Public Prosecutions dropped all charges against Haneef, Andrews refused calls to reinstate Haneef's visa, stating that his personal evidence was still valid. [cite news | url=,,22143103-2702,00.html | title= Haneef decision due today | work= | publisher= The Australian | date= 27 July 2007 | accessdate= 2007-08-22] Andrew's refusal resulted in calls for a public inquiry into the incident by then Queensland Premier Peter Beattie. [cite news |title= Beattie wants Andrews carpeted over Haneef |url= |work= News|publisher= Australian Broadcasting Corporation |date= 29 July 2007|accessdate= 2007-08-23] [ cite news |title= I was never a threat: Haneef |url= |work= |publisher= Sydney Morning Herald |date= 29 July 2007 |accessdate= 2007-08-23] [cite news |first=Parvathi |last= Menon |authorlink= |coauthors= |title= Debate over detention, departure continues |url= |work= |publisher= The Hindu|date= 29 July 2007|accessdate=2007-08-22 ]

Andrews' justification of his decision, on the basis that he had a reasonable suspicion that Haneef had associated with suspected terrorists and therefore failed the test of good character that a person must pass to keep a visa, was rejected in the Federal Court, and the revocation of Haneef's visa was overturned.Cite Case AU |FCA|1273|2007 "Haneef v Minister for Immigration and Citizenship"] However in November, e-mails released under the Freedom of Information act appeared to indicate that Andrews' office had a plan to revoke the visa before the case went to court, in the case that bail was granted. [cite news |first=Dylan |last= Welch |authorlink= |coauthors= |title= 'Secret plan' to keep Haneef in jail |url= |work= |publisher= The Sydney Morning Herald|date= 2 November 2007|accessdate=2007-11-27 ]

Publications record

Following Andrews' criticism of irregularities discovered in the CV of an Indian doctor working on the Gold Coast [cite news |title= Andrews calls for Beattie's assurance on foreign doctors |url=|work= Local news for Gold and Tweed Coasts |publisher= Australian Broadcasting Corporation|date= 23 August 2007 |accessdate= 2007-08-28 ] , various media organisations carried reports disputing Andrews' claim on parliamentary and ministerial websites to have co-authored three books, having contributing only a chapter to each.cite news |title= Minister Andrews denies fudging CV |url =|work= |publisher= Sydney Morning Herald |date= 27 August 2007|accessdate= 2007-08-28] Andrews argued in his own defence that:"In common, everyday parlance, as one of the authors (of a chapter) I presumed you called yourself a co-author - that's all I've simply done. I wasn't aware, to be frank, of some publishing convention that someone's referred to (that suggests otherwise). If that offends people's sensibilities well so be it, basically."

2007 Immigration Controversy

In October 2007 Kevin Andrews came under fire over his handling of his immigration portfolio.

Andrews' decision to cut Australia's refugee intake from African nations was branded by some critics as "racist",cite news |title=Pauline Hanson backs Kevin Andrews on migrants |url=,23599,22535794-2,00.html |publisher="The Courier-Mail" |date=2007-10-05 |accessdate=2007-12-02 ] and pulling out the race card before the 2007 Australian Federal election.cite news |title=Hardgrave backs call to cut African refugee intake |url= |work="The World Today" |publisher=Australian Broadcasting Corporation |date=2007-10-05 |accessdate=2007-12-02 ] Andrews defended the decision, saying: "Some groups don't seem to be settling and adjusting into the Australian way of life as quickly as we would hope." [cite news |first=Sarah-Jane |last= Collins |title= Murder 'shame on entire community' |url= |publisher= The Age|date= 10 October 2007|accessdate=2007-11-27 ] Andrews accused Sudanese refugees of fighting in bars and congregating in parks to drink alcoholic beverages, but did not provide statistics to back up his claims.

The Queensland Premier, Anna Bligh, described Andrews' criticism of Sudanese as "disturbing". She said: "It has been a long time since I have heard such a pure form of racism out of the mouth of any Australian politician."Labor politician Tony Burke branded Andrews' decision as "incompetent".cite news |title= Andrews' handling of African refugees 'incompetent' |url= |publisher= Australian Broadcasting Corporation |date= 2007-10-07|accessdate=2007-11-27 ] However, Andrew's actions were applauded by the anti-immigration politician, Pauline Hanson.


A member of the Catholic Pontifical Council for the Laity, Andrews is an Adjunct Lecturer in Politics and in Marriage Education in the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family in Melbourne. [ cite web | url = | title = "Hon Kevin Andrews MP" |work = Adjunct Lecturers | publisher = John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family | accessdate = 2007-11-27]

Andrews is an advisor to the Board of Life Decisions International (LDI), [ cite web | url = | title = Boards of Directors/Advisors |work = About LDI | publisher = Life Decisions International | accessdate = 2007-08-23] a (non-denominational) religious [cite web | url = | title = Prayer Project | work = Projects |publisher = Life Decisions International | accessdate = 2007-08-23] pro-life group that is primarily concerned with opposing the pro-choice Planned Parenthood organisation. LDI campaigns for chastity [cite web | url =| title = Celebrating Chastity |work = Projects |publisher = Life Decisions International | accessdate = 2007-08-23] , boycotts corporations and names individual celebrities [ cite web | url = | title = Celebrity Watch |work = Projects |publisher = Life Decisions International | accessdate = 2007-08-23] who support abortion, euthanasia, or embryonic stem cell experimentation or who, in their opinion, support sexual promiscuity. [ cite web | url =| title = Organization Watch |work = Projects| publisher = Life Decisions International | accessdate = 2007-08-23] These include GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson and Johnson, Time Warner and Disney. [ cite press release | url = | title = New Boycott Targets Named | publisher = Life Decisions International |date = 24 July 2007| accessdate = 2007-08-23]

Andrews has described his role as "honorary patronage". He was criticised by the "Sydney Morning Herald" for failing to declare his wife's membership of Life Decisions International's Board of Advisors on his entry in the Parliamentary Register of Pecuniary Interests. [cite news |first= Kerry-Anne |last= Walsh|authorlink= |coauthors= Michelle Singer |title= Andrews in radical group that boycotts Disney| url= |work= |publisher= Sydney Morning Herald|date= 7 August 2007 |accessdate= 2007-08-23 ] Life Decisions International fired back by accusing the "Sydney Morning Herald" of great bias and having no regard for the truth. []

Andrews made a speech to the Endeavour Forum on 9 April 2003 [ cite web | url = | title = "Endeavour Forum's 24th Birthday Dinner" |work = Important Coming Events, April 2003 | publisher = Endeavour Forum | accessdate = 2007-11-27] a group focusing on women's issues, opposing abortion, equal opportunity and affirmative action. [ cite web | url = | title = "Introduction 1" |work = What we are about | publisher = Endeavour Forum | accessdate = 2007-11-27]

He has also spoken at the Family Council of Victoria, [cite news |first= Chloe |last= Martin|authorlink= |coauthors= |title= The Hon Kevin Andrews MP| url= |work= |publisher= BewareOfTheGod.Com|date= |accessdate= 2007-11-27 ] an organisation which regards homosexuality as the manifestation of a psychiatric disorder. [ cite web | url = | title = "Homosexual Vilification Legislation "The Bill" is Wrong" |work = Issues | publisher = Family Council of Victoria | accessdate = 2007-11-27] The Family Council of Victoria also opposes sex-education and anti-homophobia policies in public schools, which it claims is "pro-homosexual indoctrination" of students. [ cite web | url = | title = "Why the Prime Minister is Right on Public Schools Values" |work = Issues | publisher = Bill Muehlenberg, Family Council of Victoria | accessdate = 2007-11-27]

Andrews supports immigration as a way to slow population ageing in Australia.cite news |first=Kevin |last= Andrews |authorlink= |coauthors= |title= Address to the Committee for the Economic Development of Australia |url= |work= |publisher= Department of Immigration and Citizenship|date= 17 May 2007|accessdate=2007-11-27 ] During an address to the Committee for the Economic Development of Australia, he said that "The level of net overseas migration is important as net inflows of migrants to Australia reduce the rate of population ageing because migrants are younger on average than the resident population. Just under 70% of the migrant intake are in the 15–44 age cohort, compared to 43% of the Australian population as a whole. Just 10% of the migrant intake are 45 or over, compared with 38% of the Australian population."


External links

* [ Kevin Andrews' Parliament site]
* [ Ministerial website]
* [ Kevin Andrews' personal web site]

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