Senator Malcolm Roberts has issued a statutory declaration stating that he had “analysed if he was a British citizen by decent [sic] from my father, who was born in Wales, the United Kingdom, or if I was an Indian citizen” and “can confirm I am not a citizen of the United Kingdom, nor am I a citizen of India”1. How he thought a statutory declaration would be received by others in his party is open to question, but for people in the know, with an actual understanding of the Constitution, it has been met largely with muted derision. The mainstream media is much more polite than me. Certainly, when I heard about it, I laughed, mostly because it is symptomatic of Roberts’ inability to cope with reality. He is a prime example of the Dunning-Kruger Effect2, something that Roberts has demonstrated time and again.
On Twitter, he said that he has the renunciation documents, but would not say why he didn’t release them. Could it be that the dates on these do not measure up with his nomination for election to the senate? This would at least make his nomination suspect, if not actually in breach of the Constitution3.
The problem with Malcolm Roberts is that he is full of assertions, many of which do not relate to facts, except perhaps to deny them. He is a climate change denier, a denial totally at odds with most, if not all the scientific evidence gathered in the last 40 years4. He seems to think that, like most people who have no understanding of science, that science is mostly a matter of opinion. This is the same sort of attitude exhibited by creationists (who deny evolution), flat earthers and hollow earthers (both deny most of physics), crystal fanciers (who deny inorganic chemistry) and astrologers (who deny cosmology). People like this think that because they believe something, it must be true. They do not understand the concept of evidence, let alone how science works. Roberts belongs to this group, and like them, he is totally impervious to evidence.
In the faint hope that the average IQ of the parliament will increase (this is not saying much), I hope he does turn out to be, or to have been, at the time of his nomination, a dual national, and therefore in breach of the Constitution. Hope is a powerful emotion.