Family First’s petition for a referendum on reversing the amendment to s59 of the Crimes Act that removed the defence of reasonable force for assault on a child (try saying that three times fast) has failed to get enough signatures. It needed 280,275 signatures and seemed to have enough but the Office of the Clerk found many of them were multiple or fake names.
Now, the pro-beaters have 2 months to find the 15,000 extra signatures they need to force a referendum. On the surface, that shouldn’t be hard. Family First has the money to get people out to collect names and polling data from David Farrar’s company Curia to help targeting groups. But it remains to be seen whether they will be able to get so many more names in time, they were already scrapping the barrel to get the names they have and some of the energy must be lost from their campaign after this failure.