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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 09 Hansard (Thursday, 21 August 2008) . . Page.. 3544 ..

We have another instance of the failures of the Stanhope government in relation to the Rhodium report. I do not often feel like this, but I must say that I actually felt for Ms MacDonald today. One of the things that seems to have been overlooked by the Chief Minister—maybe he just does not care because Ms MacDonald is leaving and he thinks that he does not owe her any loyalty—is the attack upon the members of the public accounts committee that we heard today in relation to this report.

Mr Stanhope, of course, did not like the report. Jon told us the other day that he does not have a glass jaw anymore. I am not quite sure what you call it. His behaviour this week has been spectacularly glass jawed.

Mr Seselja: Ceramic.

MRS DUNNE: Maybe it is ceramic.

Mr Seselja: Hysterical.

MRS DUNNE: He has been hysterical. Today his hysteria extended to Ms MacDonald when he said that this was a grubby report, this was a disgraceful report and the people who were responsible for the writing of it were grubby and disgraceful people. That was the line that went on and on. He seemed to either conveniently forget or not care that one of his own colleagues was a signatory to that report. She did demur from this report.

This is the second time today that we have seen the Chief Minister ride roughshod over the women on the backbench of the ALP, Ms MacDonald and Ms Porter. Ms Porter has been forced to sack her staff or give her staff notice because of the political expediency of the Labor Party. It is a disgraceful day for the Labor Party.

Stanhope government

MR SESELJA (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (9.49): I pick up where Mrs Dunne left off but I would like to first touch on another matter. Mr Gentleman took a point of order during the MPI. The point of order said that the Labor Party had not been running any ads. I do not think that is a point of order technically, but nonetheless that was the point of order. We have checked the Labor Party website and the ad is actually on the Labor Party website. Clearly there has been some sort of breakdown in communication; Mr Cossey is not communicating with the backbench any more and letting them know about the advertising that is going on. Perhaps it is because he was embarrassed by the quality of the ads; I am not sure.

I guess we have to reflect on what else the backbenchers have not been told about what has been going on. The power station is one. I wonder whether they knew about the push poll. I wonder if they have been told about the push poll that is going on from the Labor Party. That is the poll that says, “Do you think the Liberals are really, really terrible and by the way do you think the Labor Party is united and a strong team?”—clearly questions designed to get genuine answers from the listeners!

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