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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 4 Hansard (27 March) . . Page.. 913 ..

MR MOORE (continuing):

hockey. The sin bin is what you use in soccer. The sin bin is what you use in rugby. It is a sporting response, saying it's time that somebody cooled down without losing it. In those cases, in a sporting response, people actually lose their ability to assist their team. In most cases when somebody is sin binned-it depends on the sport-they are replaced with another player, but not always.

Mr Kaine: If you sin bin me, I don't have a team.

MR MOORE: I understand that very well, Mr Kaine. When you are sin binned there is not a team that you are letting down. The only person that you let down when you are sin binned is yourself, Mr Kaine. Nobody else, anywhere. That was a bit mean. Okay. I withdraw that.

Mr Speaker, the most important part of the convention that I would like the Administration and Procedure Committee to look at is a part that we picked up from New Zealand, and that is that we do not take away the member's right to vote. I think that is of fundamental importance in this proposal, and I would ask the members of the committee to consider that when they are looking at this sporting response rather than a law-and-order response.

MR BERRY (12.09), in reply: I will close debate on this, Mr Speaker. One thing I would say in response to Mr Moore is that this is not a sport. This is a bit more serious than that. A summary execution of a particular standing order is something to be very concerned about because you are not just smacking some child on the wrist; you are taking away the rights of constituents to be represented. So it is a little more serious than that. It is far more serious than that, in fact.

Also, you cannot compare this place directly with other places. For example, you cannot compare this parliament with the House of Representatives where there are mostly two groups that represent the government and the opposition, and a lot of members who never do anything else but vote. In this place all of the members some of the time, and most of the members all of the time, make a contribution to debates. That does not happen in the bigger parliament.

It is extremely important that members contribute to debate, and I would like the Administration and Procedure Committee to consider this. If it is all right for members to vote on a particular issue, then it is all right for them to come in here and try to convince other people to vote the way they want them to. I mean, how do you say at what point somebody's right to represent their members has been taken away? These are matters on which I am not going to go too much further because the Administration and Procedure Committee is going to look at them.

I say unashamedly that in my view this has come up in the form that it has in order to try to distract attention away from the government's difficulties and to try to blame other people for the problems here. Sorry, it will not work. As I said earlier, we accept the right of the government of the day to put forward a Speaker. We also accept the responsibility to move against the government's nomination for Speaker. If successful we would accept the government's further nomination of a Speaker, but we always reserve the right to express a view in relation to the management of this house.

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