Crossbench senator Derryn Hinch wavered before delivering his crucial support for the bill this morning.
Since 2013, Australia has sent asylum seekers arriving by boat to detention centres on Manus Island (Papua New Guinea) and Nauru.
The Prime Minister during question time this afternoon dug the boot into Labor over national security concerns emerging from the bill.
What are your thoughts on the decision to reopen the Christmas Island detention centre?
He added that Australia's border protection operations would receive other additional resources, but declined to elaborate.
Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton took a swing, too.
What led to Mr Morrison's announcement?
But Attorney-General Christian Porter went further than both his Coalition colleagues, saying the Federal Government would not be able to bar two alleged sex offenders from entering Australia under the new laws.
"Most of the people on Manus Island and Nauru are recognised refugees who have proven their lives would be in danger if they were returned to their countries of origin". If they don't come it will be because of the work and decisions we are now taking.
After he left office, the centre-left Labor government began holding refugees on Christmas Island.
"I totally repudiate the attacks of the Government, seeking to whip up fear and hysteria, seeking to lure people smugglers to entice people onto boats to come to Australia".
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said a security committee of his cabinet agreed to reopen the camp on the advice of senior security officials.More news: Iranians mark 40th anniversary of the revolution
He said the move was to deal with "the prospect of arrivals as well as dealing with the prospect of (medivac) transfers".
Around 900 asylum seekers had already been transferred to Australia for medical treatment under the old laws.
As a result, a "range of strengthenings" will boost Operation Sovereign Borders, but certain details of the stronger capacity won't be publicly revealed.
Earlier, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten sent his own message to would-be asylum seekers.
Opponents pointed out that the bill applies only to people already on Nauru and Manus Island, meaning new arrivals would not be eligible for transfer to Australia.
"All that happened this week was an acknowledgement that you can be tough on people smugglers without being weak on humanity".
He declined to specify what those classified measures were, other than to announce the reopening of the camp on Christmas Island, a remote Australian territory some 2,300 kilometres (1,400 miles) northwest of the western city of Perth.
Shonky bankers could soon be jailed for up to 15 years and corporate crooks fined up to $525 million. It does not apply to anyone new, ' Mr Shorten said.
The opposition Labor party responded furiously to what it called Morrison's "scare tactics" and said he was manufacturing a fear of migrants to win votes.
Labor is also pushing major reforms to the health system.
"But we also want to make sure for people who have been in our care, detained, for over five and a half years in most cases, but they are subject to humane treatment".