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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 3 Hansard (24 March) . . Page.. 806 ..

MS CARNELL (continuing):

opportunism. Mr Stanhope may have gone to caucus and argued for what was a reasonable approach, a sensible approach, and was rolled. That means his leadership is up to nothing or, alternatively, the Labor Party has no principles.

Casino Control Act - Mr Paul Whalan

MR BERRY (6.06): Mr Speaker, I too received a letter from Mr Whalan. Many of you may not know that Mr Whalan attended the same school that I did. In fact, that little school produced two Deputy Chief Ministers.

MR SPEAKER: I do not know whom we can apologise to.

MR BERRY: Mr Speaker, I recall serving the people of the ACT with Mr Whalan in the First Assembly. Much was said in the letter about shifting the goalposts, but in fact the goalposts were not shifted. They were locked into the same concrete which Mr Whalan and I poured around them. The casino could not expect to have poker machines.

Ms Carnell: Mr Speaker, this has absolutely nothing to do with it.

MR SPEAKER: It is all right. This is the adjournment debate. He is entitled to speak.

MR BERRY: The Chief Minister may wish to come in here and spit the dummy and try to embarrass Mr Whalan by producing his letter, but Mr Whalan has proven himself to be an active worker for the people he represents. In this case he is working very hard to represent those people he appeared for. Those who have debated Mr Whalan would well know that in the course of the toing-and-froing about a particular issue Mr Whalan takes no prisoners. Mr Whalan always acts in the best interests of his clients, and I am sure that he will be very successful on that score because it is well known that he does. But I think he is a little offbeat on this one.

My old schoolmate, talented though he is, has forgotten, perhaps, that he and I and others in the first Labor caucus gathered together, in much the same way as Labor caucuses do today, and we made decisions. At the time many of us were concerned about what was to happen with the casino in the ACT. I doubt that the casino would have gone ahead in the ACT if the argument was that it should be approved with poker machines. The casino accepted that position in the first place. I am a little surprised to see Mr Whalan advocating so forcefully a different position now, given his total commitment to fixing the goalposts deep in concrete in 1989.

Mr Stefaniak: What was the school you went to?

MR BERRY: St Joseph's Convent, Cundletown.

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