Page 34 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 14 February 2006

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the other ones that Mr Smyth brought out to support him, they are, obviously, a finance group that wants to lend money only if it is guaranteed by somebody who has Standard & Poor’s BBB or better, which means that this is a guaranteed loan. If it is a guaranteed loan, it doesn’t matter what it is for.

The fact that people have come out and said, “We want to lend you money, Mr Smyth. Come in. Welcome. Sit down. Have a coffee. Have a cream bickie. You get the cream bickies if you are prepared to borrow $600 million, $300 million, whatever slice of it you are prepared to borrow, and then guarantee”—I think I read mentioned—“7½ per cent return,” means that, if it happens to be Corofin and they get lucky, they will be paid that monthly in advance.

Mr Smyth: This has nothing to do with it, Mr Quinlan.

MR QUINLAN: You don’t like this at all, do you, little man? You are not enjoying this at all, are you? Mr Smyth, when you trot out this sort of pap, then you ought be prepared to do a bit more homework and get a bit more of a solid backing because, mate, this is paper-thin.

As I said, Rob and Jill are probably lovely people.

Mr Smyth: You need to—

MR QUINLAN: Why don’t you put your hands over your ears if you don’t want to hear it. And close your eyes so you can’t see me. This is schoolyard stuff.

This proposition that has been put forward is very, very thin. It has absolutely no homework. If Mr Smyth believes there is any sense in it, then the Assembly has a problem because, at this particular time, that man is the Leader of the Opposition and this is clearly rubbish. Unfortunately, those who sit with him have been embarrassed or forced into a position where they have to support it. Several of you, at least, have my sympathy.

Taxation—GST agreement

MR MULCAHY: My question is directed to the Chief Minister. On 14 December last year I asked you about your claim that the federal Treasurer threatened to rip up the intergovernmental agreement on the GST, raise the GST to 15 per cent or higher, and keep the extra revenue for himself. Chief Minister, they were your own words. To remove any doubt, I tabled your statement of 25 March 2005. Chief Minister, when do you expect the Treasurer will do those three things?

MR STANHOPE: As I understand it, in relation to agreements—we might term them “agreements that have been arrived at by treasuries”—this question is better directed at the Treasurer. But I can understand—with Mr Mulcahy’s current record of achievement in his shadow portfolio of treasury—that he is perhaps reluctant to address questions to the relevant minister. We see the shadow Treasurer, particularly in events of recent times as the pretender to the throne, scurrying around destabilising his leader from behind the skirts of his colleague, Mrs Dunne. He shows a lack of integrity and courage or strength

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