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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 7 Hansard (16 June) . . Page.. 2273..


MRS DUNNE (continuing):

attempted to challenge your ruling by asking you to table shows that he is completely ignorant of how the standing orders stand. The fact that we are here today having to debate dissent by the manager of government business from your ruling is a disgrace, because it shows that they have no understanding.

This is not partisanship on the part of the Liberal Party or the Greens. This is sour grapes on the part of the government, a minority government that are suddenly finding themselves out of their depth because they do not have the votes. They cannot command the votes on the floor. In the previous Assembly, they could bully their way through these things; now they have to rely on their own wit, their own guile, their own honesty and their own integrity.

What we have seen today is that these are people without integrity. When they get themselves in a tight place, the only thing they can do is lash out at the man. What we heard today from the leader of the house, the manager of government business, was an unparalleled attack on the office of the Speaker, on the integrity of the Speaker, on a point of order which is wrong. A newbie in this place should know, and if he does not know he should inform himself before he stands in this place and moves dissent from a ruling of the Speaker. If he took one second to go and ask the Clerk what was the reference for that, he would know how foolish and how wrong he really is.

It is quite simple. The Clerk's advice is right. Your ruling is correct, Mr Speaker. What we rely upon here is House of Representatives Practice. It says:

An opinion by the Speaker on a complaint raised under standing order 51 is not a ruling ...

And so no dissent motion is in order. Mr Speaker, we cannot move dissent. I have no wish to move dissent. What we have here today is proof that this government is out of control and the manager of government business is not fit for the job.

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for the Environment, Climate Change and Water, Minister for Energy and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (10.26), in reply: For those opposite who say that when the government is unhappy with something it plays the man, let me say that we just saw the prime example of playing the man from Mrs Dunne. As always, when it comes to Mrs Dunne, she is not able to differentiate between playing the man and objecting to a decision. Mr Speaker, what the government is doing, and what I am doing, is objecting to your decision. Your approach—

Mrs Dunne: You cannot. You do not have the capacity to do so. You do not have the capacity to do so.

MR CORBELL: And your approach, Mr Speaker, is one which faced me with no choice but to move the dissent that I have.

Mrs Dunne: You could have voted against Mr Hanson's motion if he moved it.

MR CORBELL: Mr Speaker, the reason for that is that—


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