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It hasn't been pretty, but this is a workable compromise on an ugly issue

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Ask 100 Australians what they want on refugees and health.

Here are a few bets on the answer. They want sick people to be properly treated, whoever they are. They don’t want refugees stuck on Manus Island and Nauru forever. They don’t want serious criminals entering Australia. And they don’t want the boats to relaunch.

The amendments to which Labor and the crossbench have agreed largely tick those boxes.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten on Tuesday.Credit:Alex Ellinghausen

It hasn’t been pretty. But a majority of members of Parliament have supported an outcome most Australians can live with.

Labor has embarrassed itself by backing a bill in the Senate only to change its mind........

© Canberra Times