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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 1 Hansard (15 February) . . Page.. 240 ..

MR KAINE (continuing):

But, Chief Minister, you then went on, gratuitously, and you said, "qualities that, some suggest, are not always quite so evident among the ranks of our legislators". Mr Speaker, the Chief Minister was suggesting that all or some of the members of this place were unprofessional, dishonest, lazy, non-collaborative, lacking in dedication and undependable.

Chief Minister, I know that you do not hold some of your government members in very high regard, but to which of them were you referring when you described them in those terms?

MR SPEAKER: This is asking for an expression of opinion.

MR HUMPHRIES: Undependable? Who could I have been referring to there, Mr Kaine, I wonder? Mr Speaker, I hate to shatter Mr Kaine's line of thought but I did not use in my speech the words he quoted. The words he quoted were in the printed version of my speech

Mr Kaine: I have a copy of your speech here and the words are there.

MR HUMPHRIES: I am sure you do. You have a copy of the speech that was given to me to deliver.

Mr Kaine: Oh, this is the speech that you didn't publish. I see.

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, I have too much regard for my colleagues in this place on both sides of the chamber to use words as disrespectful of them as that. You will find, if you check what I actually said, that I used a far more innocuous phrase, and I will not try to quote it exactly, such as "some people cast aspersions on these qualities in the Assembly", or words to that effect. I was far more careful about what I said in my delivery of that speech than the words provided to me might have suggested.

MR KAINE: That was a very interesting response, Mr Speaker, because it was clearly what the Chief Minister intended to say until he thought better of it. Chief Minister, since at one stage you obviously felt that some members of this place could be described in such terms, and had you used such a description in this place it would be considered highly disorderly by the Speaker under standing order 55, would you care to make it quite clear that you do not believe that any member of this place fits the description that you were going to use in your speech even though you did not have the courage to deliver it?

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, I did not use those words, and those words are not attributable to me therefore. If members of this place want to speculate about each others dependability, honesty, capacity to be reliable et cetera, then that is up to them. Mr Speaker, I think members of the Assembly are under enough scrutiny as it is.

Mr Berry: I don't want him to tell me he loves me.


HUMPHRIES: I might make an exception in your case, Mr Berry. Mr Speaker, there will be ample opportunity for the members of the ACT community to judge those qualities, and many others, come 20 October when, we are told, a Labor government is

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