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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 8 Hansard (9 August) . . Page.. 2682..


MRS BURKE: Mr Speaker, I was the only woman present in the chamber, and I am getting to it. If members will just give me two minutes, it will become clear. Mr Speaker, I would like it to be noted that I was the only woman present in the chamber at the time. With this in mind, the comment could only have been directed at me.

Mr Speaker, the making of comments like those is one of the main reasons the people of Canberra have little respect for the Labor Party and brings politicians into disrepute. The people have such a low regard for Labor's policies because, despite all the high and mighty words of the Leader of the Opposition and, it should be noted, spokesman for the status of women-

Mr Corbell: Mr Speaker, I rise to a point of order. Mrs Burke is, of course, entirely entitled to raise a personal explanation, but she is now debating the matter and is out of order.

MR SPEAKER: Indeed, I have to uphold that point of order, Mrs Burke.

MRS BURKE: Mr Quinlan said in this place yesterday, "Condescending, bloody woman." The comment was derogatory and mean spirited, but not unexpected from the Labor Party.

MR SPEAKER: Just a moment, please, Mrs Burke. I will not allow a personal explanation to become politicised. Just explain where you believe that you have been personally attacked.

Mr Humphries: Mr Speaker, I think that the comments made by Mr Quinlan, as reported in Hansard, are unparliamentary, and I would ask that he withdraw them.

Mr Quinlan: Would someone please be so kind as to show me a copy of the Hansard?

MR SPEAKER: Excuse me, please. Mrs Burke, if you finish your personal explanation, I will deal with this matter.

MRS BURKE: Thank you, Mr Speaker. I just ask that Mr Quinlan withdraw that remark.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Quinlan, at page 59 of yesterday's Hansard there is the statement: "Condescending, bloody woman." I do not know to whom it referred. I have, however, checked on comments that are unparliamentary and found reference to the expression "silly woman", which was subsequently withdrawn. Under the circumstances, I believe that you should withdraw the comment. I would also draw members' attention to page 28 of Hansard, where Mr Moore is quoted as saying something other than, "You give me the pips."

Mr Moore: Is that right?

MR SPEAKER: Again, what is in Hansard is unparliamentary and I would ask you to withdraw it.


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