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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 9 Hansard (23 November) . . Page.. 2552 ..

MS FOLLETT (continuing):

our sympathy. He has obviously had a very bad week indeed. I do not think that this is a genuine censure motion. Even if it were, you are censuring the Opposition. We have six votes. I know that; you know that. So what? What are you going to do to me as a result of it? It is crazy stuff. It is pathetic. Forget it.

MR HUMPHRIES (Attorney-General) (4.25 am): Mr Speaker, there are double standards in use by the Opposition. The double standards are that the Leader of the Opposition knew that the house in 1993 resisted her proposals for there to be changes to her budget. She refused to accept those changes. In fact, she defied a motion of censure against her and stood by the changes to her budget, and today she moved censure of the Government for doing exactly the same thing.

Ms Follett: Just make it snappy, Gary. We know what the result is going to be.

MR HUMPHRIES: You might not like it, but that is a double standard. The other issue which to me seems to be a double standard is Ms Follett's views about the blocking of supply of governments. I heard Ms Follett say in a radio interview some while ago that she was motivated to get involved in politics because of what happened to the Whitlam Government in 1975. Mr Speaker, when I heard that, I assumed that she was motivated by anger at what had happened to the Whitlam Government in 1975. Obviously, she was motivated by a desire to do to somebody else the same thing that had been done to the Whitlam Government. That is a double standard, in my view. Those opposite might not like it, Mr Speaker, but it is a fact of life that you cannot oppose the blocking of government supply 20 years ago and now say that it is perfectly all right to do it on the floor of the Assembly here. Mr Speaker, if they cannot see the way in which they deserve to be censured, perhaps it is time that they were given a salutary lesson and made to experience a censure motion.

MR BERRY (4.27 am): Mr Humphries, again grasping at straws, talks about double standards because Labor has moved a censure motion against his leader over her refusal to accept the outcome of a committee of this Assembly. We have always been pretty consistent about the committee process in this Assembly. We have recognised the work that has gone into the committees and the role they play in the democratic processes in this place. Do not accuse us of double standards on that issue. We have been straight, right down the line.

Mr Humphries dredges up this discredited argument about the issue of supply and tries to draw some comparisons between this place and two other places, the Senate and the House of Representatives on the hill. My colleague Mr Connolly will probably give you a better lecture on this issue, but I do not think it is worth while putting a lot of effort into this. If Mr Humphries cannot work out the difference between the Senate and this place - and he is the Attorney-General - we are in a lot of trouble. I think I will give up on that score, because if you do not know the difference by now nothing that I say will convince you.

MR WHITECROSS (4.29 am): Mr Speaker, the only way I can assist my colleague Mr Berry in trying to grapple with what Mr Humphries was talking about is to say that this motion is so without purpose and so without basis that Mr Humphries had to introduce this spurious argument to at least give it the veneer of having some purpose.

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