Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 01 Hansard (Tuesday, 2 May 1995) . . Page.. 103 ..
That change came because there had been this struggle throughout the community, and people power had won. It was warming to be involved in the marches with the people and to see them gathered around something which was going to change their lives. Even though it might not have changed to the full extent that they would have wished, it did change. That was a very significant thing to see.
Other significant matters have occurred here in the ACT on May Day. I was reminded today that Mr Connolly made his inaugural speech on May Day in 1990. He mentioned in it the long traditions of the Labor Party in our 100 years, going back to 1891 and the great struggle in Queensland, which was pretty much the same sort of thing which had occurred in the Philippines. People were struggling around an issue and they wanted change. Working people in Queensland had a couple of options. One was the option of violence and the other was the parliamentary option. They took the parliamentary option. Since then the Australian Labor Party has been developing itself as the representative of working people in this country. We have that long and proud tradition and we continue to fight for it.
I must say, looking back to May 1990, how much things have changed and how much they have not. Mr Moore, in a debate on the same day, was talking about the Liberal Party, I think, and he went on to say:
The community can see only one area that you have decided needs to be improved, and that is the wallet of those who are already well off.
Mr Moore said that about the Liberal Party on 1 May 1990. Is it not interesting, Mr Speaker, that today, in question time, we were questioning the Government about their ability to help the well-off but not look after the workers? Nothing changes.
Mr Brendan Smyth
MR DE DOMENICO (Minister for Urban Services) (9.09): Mr Speaker, listening to Mr Berry made me reflect for a while that there have been some people power things. Some people have been warming to things, not in Manila, but very close to us here in the ACT of recent times. I think it would be remiss of this Assembly on the first night of a real sitting not to mention one of those times when people power really did take over and Mr Brendan Smyth won the seat of Canberra. It is warming to many of the people in the ACT. Hordes of people decided to change their minds and vote for Mr Smyth. It was a true reflection of people power. It was a reflection of the fact that people were discontented with the calibre of representation that they had had from another member over a number of years, and from another party over a number of years. The people of the seat of Canberra, mainly from the Tuggeranong Valley, I am pleased to say, saw through the veneer that was there for many years. To me, that was a true reflection of people power, a true reflection of people warming to a fresh approach and a new face. I think it behoves this Assembly to say congratulations to Mr Smyth on his victory.