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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2012 Week 1 Hansard (15 February) . . Page.. 172..


is on the tent embassy. I would like to hear what it is. The second is that this is a trawling exhibition initiated—

Mr Smyth: Normally it's an expedition, not an exhibition.

MR SPEAKER: Thank you, Mr Smyth.

DR BOURKE: A trawling expedition initiated for the benefit of Tony Abbott.

MR SPEAKER: Supplementary, Mr Seselja.

MR SESELJA: Minister, how did the Prime Minister's office contact your office?

DR BOURKE: Could I have the question again, please?

Mr Seselja: How did the Prime Minister's office contact your office?

DR BOURKE: By telephone.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Smyth, a supplementary.

MR SMYTH: Minister, in what capacity were you being contacted? For example, were you being contacted as a member of the ACT government or as the minister for Indigenous affairs?

Mr Hargreaves: On a point of order, Mr Speaker, the standing orders are quite clear: ministers cannot be asked about the motives of another party. That other party has to actually—

Opposition members interjecting

Mr Hargreaves: I have not finished, Mrs Dunne. Do not be so rude, thank you. Mr Speaker, the question was clear: in what capacity was the minister called? He cannot possibly know what the motives of the caller were.

Mrs Dunne: On the point of order, Mr Speaker, Mr Hargreaves's point of order is a complete furphy. We are not asking Dr Bourke to speculate or to attribute any motives to anyone else; we are asking him to impart information. When someone rang him, what was he told about why they were ringing him? Were they ringing him because he was the minister or for some other reason?

MR SPEAKER: On the point of order, I will allow the question. I think the question needs to be framed in the context of whether Dr Bourke is aware of what capacity he was called in. That fits within the framework.

DR BOURKE: Thank you, Mr Speaker, and I thank the member for that question. Nobody from the Prime Minister's office called me.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Smyth, a supplementary question.


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