Sam Dastyari has been back to his virtue signalling worst the past few days following President Trump’s executive order to ban travel to the United States from seven countries with a history of terrorist related activity. He posted on Facebook a photo of an alleged Syrian child injured during the recent liberation of Aleppo with the caption ‘Indefinite ban for kids like this. That will show them’. His Facebook page is currently full of other posts criticizing Trump’s actions. Obviously, he is trying hard to stage a political comeback after his foreign expenses and donations scandal last year, not sure how constantly criticising the actions of major ally will achieve this.
Today he has gone a step further by trying to gain sympathy for himself and his family claiming they will be banned from the United States because they were born in Iran in an interview with Fairfax Media. This is because Trump’s executive order includes banning travel from dual citizens of the seven countries listed.
However, in this effort for the reader to feel sorry for him he might have cast doubt on whether he has renounced his Iranian citizenship. Section 44 of the Australian Constitution forbids dual citizens from sitting in the Australia Parliament.
The Fairfax article says of Dastyari ‘’he had taken steps to divest himself of Iranian citizenship prior to his entering parliament, but the process was complex and expensive and most Iranians did not have the resources to undertake it’’. This would imply that he has doubt over whether he no longer holds Iranian citizenship. Then Dastyari himself says “It’s so saddening that as an Australian senator, despite having taken every possible step to renounce my Iranian citizenship, I cannot tell you with any certainty whether I would be allowed in the US today’’.
This interview if Dastyari is telling the truth could potentially open himself up to a High Court challenge. He of course could be only be hinting at this to gain sympathy media attention, just like we he was a Muslim for one night in front of Pauline Hanson on Q&A last year.
Some might say it is conspiratorial to bring this up, but reading Dastyari’s words it is fair to ask he still a dual citizen? The Constitution is clear that you can only hold Australian citizenship to sit in our Parliament, a One Nation Senator was previously disqualified on these grounds and more recently Eric Abetz faced a high court challenge claiming he had not renounced his German citizenship. Once again Sam Dastyari in an effort gain attention has put himself into political trouble.