Page 1534 - Week 05 - Wednesday, 1 June 2022

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restaurant there, plus they also have a lot of commercial space that can be leased out to businesses that may want to use that venue for their conferences and the like.

I encourage anyone who has not been to Mulligans Flat reserve to visit their information centre in Throsby. Go along and have a tea or coffee, something to nibble on, and then head out and have a walk through the reserve. I really commend the Woodlands and Wetlands Trust, along with Jason, on the amazing work that they have done to build this centre, because I think it is going to be a great asset to the community. I encourage people to get along and visit the Throsby visitors centre.

Federal election 2022—election day

MR HANSON (Murrumbidgee) (5.02): With all the argy-bargy in this place from time to time, I thought I would reflect on the recent election day that we all enjoyed—some of us enjoyed it more than others, obviously!—here in the ACT. I made an adjournment speech back in 2010, following the federal election then, which was a less than pleasant day in the ACT. It was freezing cold and miserable and the various volunteers for the political parties huddled together. I remember I was running the Curtin booth for the Liberal Party and it was John for the Labor Party. I cannot remember the Greens fellow’s name. I apologise. I spoke then about the civility with which we treated democracy.

I am delighted to say that that has not changed in the intervening period. I was at St Jude’s in Holder all day on Saturday just gone. I was there with Laura from the Greens, who I am sure the Greens would know well. Matt from the Labor Party was one of the volunteers, and a fellow called Tim was out there supporting Mr Pocock—despite what you might read in the press, not yet Senator but Mr Pocock! I would just like to say that it was one of those days that restores your faith in humanity, in the democratic process.

We are all on the front line of politics. We are on the front line of the argy-bargy and the battles, and that is a good thing. I make no complaint about that. This should be the place for vigorous debate, and we should be passionate about what we think and feel in this place and articulate it forcefully on occasion. But it was nice to be there with fellow Canberrans with very different politic ideas. One of the first things that Matt did was go and get me a coffee. I got Laura a snag sandwich as well. Isn’t it wonderful that here in Canberra, at that booth at St Jude’s in Holder—and, I am sure, in other booths all across Canberra and all across Australia—despite our quite differing political views, when it comes down to it we can all hang around at the booth all day, eat snags, eat some cake, have a cup of coffee and at the end of the day when the results are in we can pat each other on the back and say, “Well done”.

I know that that happened on other booths. Certainly, it was something that I experienced during the pre-poll as well, in Civic and out at the Old Parliament House site. So I just wanted to put on the record my thanks to Matt and Laura and Tim and all the other volunteers that were there from all the political parties. I had Richard and my wife, Fleur, supporting me on my booth, and Rosemary from the Liberal Party—everybody getting on fabulously together.

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