Pauline Hanson's 'It's OK to be white' motion narrowly defeated in Senate

One Nation Senator Pauline Hanson brought the motion to the Senate saying people should be proud of their

"There is a process involved in determining the position of the government in relation to 50 to 60 motions a week", Senator Cormann told reporters at Parliament House on Tuesday.

The Coalition's decision to endorse the motion sparked an immediate backlash, prompting Attorney-General Christian Porter to defend the move on social media.

"As leader of the government in the senate, I take responsibility for that error, and I'm sorry that that happened, which was indeed regrettable. It is indeed regrettable".

The motion, brought forward by Pauline Hanson on Monday, also declared "anti-white" racism was on the rise in Australia.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says it is "regrettable" government senators voted in favour of a motion declaring "it's OK to be white".

The One Nation Leader says "anti-white racism" is on the rise and insists it must be called out.

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"It is indeed okay to be white".

"It appears that, of the very large number of motions on which my office's views are routinely sought, this one was not escalated to me because it was interpreted in my office as a motion opposing racism", he said.

"People have a right to be proud of their cultural background whether they're black, white or brindle".

Its inclusion in the motion is also seen as a nod to the Canadian activist Lauren Southern, who wore a T-shirt emblazoned with the phrase when she visited Australia earlier this year.

But Senator Hanson has hit back, saying it's "a load of rubbish and BS he put across the chamber to me". The Greens leader senator Richard Di Natale said the "it's OK to be white" slogan has got a long history in the white supremacist movement.

The phrase has a long history amongst the so-called alt-right in the United States, and is regularly used to provoke outrage by right-wing trolls in political debates.

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