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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 5 Hansard (9 May) . . Page.. 1420 ..

MR STANHOPE (continuing):

know that a member of the government is meeting with the Tuggeranong Community Council at 5 o'clock this afternoon-I am sorry, tomorrow afternoon.

Mr Humphries: You are the Chief Minister. They want you.

MR STANHOPE: It is a sign of my popularity, my standing in the community and the standing of this government, that everybody in Canberra wants to see me. I simply do not have enough hours in the day to see everybody. I know this is the most popular government we have had since the inception of self-government. I know you are the least popular opposition there has ever been. I know, just as the people of Canberra do. That is why you got such a flogging in the election. That is why you suffered a 16 per cent swing against you. That is why you were swept out of office-because you are hopeless and the people of Canberra know you are hopeless.

They know there is no sense in talking to you. There is nothing to be gained in talking to the opposition, so everybody in Canberra wants to talk to me. I get hundreds and hundreds of invitations to meetings and functions, and requests such as these. I cannot meet them all. I regret that I cannot meet them all. I regret the level of my popularity.

Mr Pratt: Mr Speaker, I raise a point of order on the basis of relevance. I do not need a history lesson on where we did or did not go wrong. Will he see Tuggeranong Community Council, which is a fairly substantial body?

MR SPEAKER: I think there was something relevant in the point that he did raise: his unprecedented popularity and the demands that have been placed on him. He was getting to your point, I am sure, Mr Pratt.

MR STANHOPE: I was. It is just a fact.

This is just puerile, childish, undergraduate nonsense. Mr Wood made the point yesterday that, after six months as minister for housing, he received a question on housing. There is perhaps no issue of more fundamental importance to the people of Canberra than the level and capacity of our public housing. It is a matter of major import. Mr Wood got his first question yesterday on the subject of housing. Today, I have received three questions on my diary, on my commitments. Mr Wood, until yesterday, had not received a single question on housing.

Mr Stefaniak: Mr Speaker, I wish to raise a point of order. I think the Chief Minister should check the daily program. He will see stacks of questions on notice on housing over the last six months.

MR STANHOPE: I am not only the Chief Minister, I am also the Minister for Health. I am also the Attorney-General. Today, I have had three questions. It is almost like a question on typographical errors. We are almost at that standard. One wonders whether, in the absence of the capacity to hack into ministers' computers, the Liberal Party really is at a loss when it comes to asking intelligent questions. If you cannot actually read someone else's mail, if you have lost the capacity to hack, one wonders whether or not you have lost the capacity to ask an intelligent question.

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