Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 10 Hansard (Wednesday, 26 August 2009) . . Page.. 3687 ..
I thought, until the last month, that this was the position of the Liberal Party too. I must say that the Liberal Party in this place has ad nauseam in my time here demanded that the Labor Party sell the Labor club and get out of the licensed club business. We now decide, a decision that I support, that we should do that and the minute we take the decision and actually advance the proposed sale of the Labor club the Liberal Party suddenly has a quick change of heart, to the point where we have legislation introduced this morning which prevents the Labor Party from selling the Labor club. Talk about an about-face. This was a position I shared with the Liberal Party until the Liberal Party changed its position; namely, that we should—
Mr Seselja: You are acknowledging that you directed them?
MR STANHOPE: No. I am acknowledging that I am, as a member of the Labor Party, of the view that we should sell the Labor club, a position which the Liberal Party used to have but which, now that the Labor Party is on the cusp of selling it, the Liberal Party introduces legislation to prevent the Labor Party from selling the Labor club. Talk about two-faced political opportunism. Talk about opposition for opposition’s sake. The minute we get to the point of deciding to sell the club, you introduce legislation that prevents us from selling it. I wonder why.
It is a bit like the about-face on fireworks. We discover, with just a tiny bit of research, the fact that every single one of the Liberals has campaigned on the abolition of fireworks. Until the government decides yes, let us do it, all of a sudden it is an outrageous thing to do.
Mr Hanson: On a point of order, Mr Speaker: Mr Stanhope has just alleged that I have campaigned on the issue of fireworks. I ask that he present evidence of that claim.
MR SPEAKER: There is no point of order.
MR STANHOPE: It is interesting, though, how quickly Mr Hanson dissociates himself from all of his colleagues. The strength of Mrs Dunne’s objection! It is time members of this place took a good, hard look at themselves and, in accord with the overwhelming will of the community, banned fireworks. What a hypocrite! (Time expired.)
MR SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Smyth?
MR SMYTH: Yes, thank you, Mr Speaker. Chief Minister, what actions, if any, have you taken to avoid the perception of a conflict of interest in this matter?
MR STANHOPE: Should I go back to fireworks, do you think? Mr Speaker, I have absolutely no conflict of interest in this place. I have not in any way offended the ministerial code of conduct. I have not offended against any law of the territory and nor will I. I have not done anything to unduly affect the control of the Labor club by the members of the Labor club board, absolutely nothing—nor will I and nor would I ever. But am I one of those members of the Labor Party that support the sale of the