Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 9 Hansard (18 November) . . Page.. 2590 ..
MR MOORE: The very thing, Mr Speaker. The logic of my argument is that Mr Osborne, in seeking to suspend standing orders, is admitting that his Bill is an absolute failure. He is admitting it for these following reasons. That is the logic of my argument. I would like to take you through that. The failure of this piece of legislation, Mr Speaker, is fundamental. It is fundamental because it is about attacking the rights of individual people.
What the debate is about, Mr Speaker, is a difference of opinion. There are those who believe that abortion ought to be illegal because they believe that the foetus is a child, and therefore the child is murdered. There are those who believe that the foetus is part of a woman and therefore should be part of their decision.
In this debate we have sought to respect each other's beliefs, and we ought to respect each other's beliefs, Mr Speaker. I respect Mr Osborne's right to put up a piece of legislation, but what we should also say is that the decision as to whether we are talking about a baby or about a foetus is a belief. It is not a matter of fact; it is a belief. That is the fundamental issue that we are talking about, and the problem that Mr Osborne has in seeking to suspend these standing orders. We are talking about that fundamental issue of belief and respect for each other's belief.
Mr Osborne's need to suspend standing orders is an admission of failure. It is an admission that his Bill is going to interfere with other people's beliefs. It is not going to allow the rest of us to respect a woman's right to believe that this is a foetus and therefore she can take whatever action she perceives as appropriate.
It seems to me that there is another major factor involved in this motion to suspend standing orders in order to introduce a piece of legislation. It is exactly the same problem we had when Mr Osborne introduced this Bill four or five weeks ago. And what was that? It was not on the daily program. Mr Rugendyke introduced a Bill this morning by leave. It was there on the daily program so we knew it was going to happen. We said, "Yes, Mr Rugendyke, that is a perfectly reasonable thing". But, no, Mr Osborne comes through again, after taking all the flak that he took a few weeks ago about using the processes properly. If he wants to do this he should use proper processes. Instead, Mr Speaker, he seeks to suspend standing orders and to seek leave again without his Bill being on the daily program. Why? Why did not Mr Osborne say, "Okay, I ran out of time."? He has the numbers, clearly. Why doesn't he say, "Let us use the process properly. I will give notice today so it is on the daily program and I will seek leave to introduce it as part of executive members business."? He has the numbers to do that. But, no; instead, he uses inappropriate processes again.
It makes us all question, Mr Speaker, what is going on. Of course, the answer is to do with manipulation to get numbers; to try to get people onside. (Extension of time granted) Thank you, Mr Speaker, and thank you members. This is purely about numbers. It is about trying to win people over. Recognising that his Bill was flawed in the first place - there are 13 things wrong with it - Mr Osborne is trying to suspend standing orders and bring on a new piece of legislation which I hear, over the grapevine,