Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 10 Hansard (3 September) . . Page.. 3000..
Mrs Carnell: You are a joke. We do not give John James a subsidy.
MR BERRY: She says that we do not give John James a subsidy. John James has been established for a long time, and in fact there was a subsidy from the Territory when Calvary private hospital was established. They used our building, do you remember? Mr Speaker, there is no demand for private hospital beds in the ACT from the hospitals themselves that are here or from the medical profession. This is just an ideological bent of the Liberals. They cannot help themselves. They want to reduce the number of public hospital services here in the ACT. They are prepared to do anything to achieve it, including subsidising business so that somebody can establish a private hospital here.
MR SPEAKER: Order! The member's time has expired.
MR DE DOMENICO (Minister for Urban Services) (6.04): Mr Speaker, I had nearly fallen asleep upstairs and then I was awakened by - - -
MR SPEAKER: Only upstairs, Mr De Domenico?
MR DE DOMENICO: I was awakened by this cant that I heard on the television set. When I woke up I saw that it was Mr Berry speaking. I could not resist coming down again, Mr Speaker, to put the record straight about who it is that misinforms and does all that sort of thing. Mr Berry's final comment was that the only reason why Mrs Carnell came into this place and talked about interest in a private hospital was that Mrs Carnell has a certain ideological bent, and that is true. That ideological bent happens to be very different from Mr Berry's. All I can say, Mr Speaker, is: Thank God for that.
If Mr Berry were alert to what is happening around him he would realise that there are very few people in this town, in fact in this country, who have a similar ideological bent to his. When Mr Berry goes on the attack in this place, telling everybody how Mrs Carnell or Mr Humphries or I, or other members of the Liberal Party, put out some misinformation, he should have a look at the history of this place. He does not have to go back very far, mind you. Twelve months ago, prior to the first Carnell budget, I can recall Mr Berry out there in voterland with press releases saying things like that we were going to be selling the Kippax library and shutting it down. He was proved to be wrong. We were going to sell the Canberra Theatre. He was wrong as well. We were going to sell Namadgi National Park. He was wrong again.
I think Mr Hird asked me a question about some of the promises that Mr Berry had made or some of the things he had mentioned out in his electorate of Ginninderra. I think he predicted five things. Actually, he went further than predicting things. He said that this was the secret agenda of this ideologically bent Liberal administration. Of the five things that he suggested we were going to do, he was proved to be wrong time and time again.