Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 06 Hansard (Thursday, 7 May 2009) . . Page.. 2155 ..
MR HARGREAVES: I thank members.
Question resolved in the affirmative.
MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for the Environment, Climate Change and Water, Minister for Energy and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (6.27): As I was indicating before lunch, there is an obligation on the Liberal Party and, in particular, the Leader of the Opposition to demonstrate that he has conducted himself in a manner which does properly put to bed the real doubt that still exists in this place and, I think, in the broader community about the level of the Liberal Party’s involvement in the creation of this scurrilous and highly defamatory website.
I note that the Greens are proposing an amendment to Mr Seselja’s amendment. I can indicate that the government will not support Mr Seselja’s amendment in that it removes the substantive part of my motion and, for that reason, we will not support it. However, if the Greens propose to link the two, then the government, I think, in those circumstances would be willing to support that.
So the issue here is that Mr Seselja really does need to demonstrate that he is serious about this matter, that he has undertaken a level of scrutiny that he can justify in this place. It is not good enough to simply say, “I have looked at it and there is nothing to worry about.” That sort of standard would not be expected of ministers and a much higher standard would be expected of ministers rather than simply the assertion: “I have looked at it and, trust me, there is no problem.”
He needs to demonstrate that he has undertaken a rigorous and thorough process that puts beyond doubt any suggestion that the Liberal Party has been involved in the creation of this scurrilous and highly defamatory website. If he is unable to do so, then quite simply it just shows that he has not been able to put that question beyond doubt and that those doubts will remain about the level of the Liberal Party’s involvement in this matter.
The government will not be supporting Mr Seselja’s amendment but is willing to consider an amendment by the Greens.
MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (6.29): This is a very important matter and is a matter which the Liberal Party has taken quite seriously. In fact, when this matter arose I was overseas but I was informed and approached for my comments on the matter and for what I knew about the matter. So I know how seriously the Leader of the Opposition and his senior staff took on this matter because they took the time to contact me when I was holidaying, visiting my family overseas.
The actions of members of the opposition, the actions of the Leader of the Opposition, the statements of the Leader of the Opposition, the statements by Mr Hanson, the