Page 4115 - Week 13 - Tuesday, 15 November 2005

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attacked that legislation as being “a backdoor attack on abortion”, “a backdoor attack on the existing abortion laws in the ACT”. That was never the case.

One would have to say that, even looking at this pale imitation amendment, if you take the Chief Minister’s definition of attacks on existing ACT abortion law, it is perhaps sailing a little close to the breeze. Whilst we note your hypocrisy, Chief Minister, we welcome the fact that you are going some way to try to plug this gap in law, to bring more and better protections to pregnant women and the unborn and to put some sort of a message out there to people that attacks on pregnant women will not be tolerated. However, Chief Minister, you need to have a more substantive law. You have got a long way to go. The question must be asked: why has it taken two and a half years for you to bring anything at all to this place to address this issue?

Debate interrupted in accordance with standing order 74 and the resumption of the debate made an order of the day for a later hour.

Sitting suspended from 12.32 to 2.30 pm.

Questions without notice

Budget—election promises

MR SMYTH: My question is to the Chief Minister, Mr Stanhope. The government has received advice that there are currently 55 election commitments outstanding from the 2004 ACT election, comprising a total of $69 million in recurrent spending and $188 million in capital spending, that your government has not implemented. Given the poor budget position facing the ACT, how many of those promises will you abandon?


MR SMYTH: How can you possibly afford to fund these commitments unless you increase taxes, increase borrowings or cut services?

MR STANHOPE: These matters were considered in the context of the budget.

Government—expenditure review

MR MULCAHY: My question is directed to the Treasurer. I refer to the review of government structures and spending that the Chief Minister announced last week. Since each of the five items in the terms of reference are already part of the regular and ongoing work of the Treasury, what can the review team do that Treasury is not able to do?

MR QUINLAN: Someone said—2,000 years ago I think—that a prophet is not honoured in his own land. I am already in the process of putting together all of the propositions I have brought forward from time to time and probably not sold very well. Unlike some people, I am not very good at covering my tail by writing stuff down and trotting out a note a year or two later. Nevertheless, to the best of my recollection, I will be putting that stuff forward.

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