Page 3492 - Week 11 - Thursday, 15 November 2007

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It is important that we look back on what Mr Stefaniak tried to do. He made a genuine effort to say that we ought to put more into the community if clubs are going to be allocating these substantial amounts to political parties. In fairness to the club movement, most of them are not into this caper; most of them use the money for their genuine membership needs. The ones I am a member of certainly are not in this business of bankrolling political parties on this scale.

The facts are starting to unravel here today—to the point where we now know that the Greens and the Labor Party have had a fundamental fracture in the love affair this week. It all comes down to the grubby issue of gambling money. Isn’t that ironic? It is the grubby issue of gambling money, and their hands are not clean on these issues.

It is wonderful that we can look back and see that the Liberal Party showed that its commitment was to the people of Canberra, recognising that, whilst most people enjoy gambling, there is a percentage of people who suffer great distress and whose families suffer distress. Mr Stefaniak took the initiative of saying that, if they are going to be giving it to political parties, more money ought to be parked into the community groups, who work with great difficulty—particularly groups like Lifeline, in counselling people. One of my family members has been a counsellor; they did it for 10 years—dealing with many of the people who are adversely impacted by gambling.

I will conclude on those remarks. It has been a very revealing afternoon.

MR DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! The discussion has concluded.

Personal explanation

DR FOSKEY (Molonglo): Mr Deputy Speaker, I seek leave to make a personal statement regarding misrepresentation.

Mrs Dunne: Under what standing order?

DR FOSKEY: Standing order 46, I believe.

MR DEPUTY SPEAKER: Carry on, Dr Foskey.

DR FOSKEY: Just for the record, Mr Deputy Speaker, the donation to the ACT Greens for the federal election came from the building workers organisation, not the CFMEU—

Mrs Dunne: Mr Deputy Speaker, on a point of order: this is not a personal explanation; this is not about Dr Foskey. This is about the Greens and their federal campaign, and it cannot be covered by standing order 46.

MR DEPUTY SPEAKER: Dr Foskey, under standing order 46 you are permitted to make a personal explanation. If you cannot do that, you will not be able to carry on.

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