Page 812 - Week 03 - Wednesday, 27 February 2013
I think it is worth reading an extract from Mr Seselja’s open letter to the people of Brindabella in the Valley Voice issue of September 2011. Mr Seselja said:
I’m passionate about representing the people where I live, where I grew up, and where I am now raising my own children. As a born and bred Tuggeranong resident, I am proud to seek pre-selection in the electorate of Brindabella …
He then concluded:
Representing Tuggeranong, everything I do will be about local solutions, local services, local answers and local commitment.
But that passion has faded. How quickly that passion has faded. We now know that those promises were not worth the paper that they were written on. We know that there should have been a small print in there to say that this contract will be torn up “as soon as it suits me”. Mr Seselja neglected to mention, as he promised the world to the people of Lanyon, that he would stick around for as long as it took him to find something better.
The deception was put on record on 13 November, when the Canberra Times posed the question directly to Mr Seselja about whether he would seek federal preselection. Mr Seselja’s emphatic denial is startling in light of what has since unfolded:
I have no plans to enter federal politics.
But of course we know that is just a bald-faced lie. We know that it is not just the people of Brindabella that he failed to communicate his true intentions to. We know that even Senator Gary Humphries, once a friend and mentor to Mr Seselja, has also been kept in the dark about Mr Seselja’s real plans for his career.
Mr Smyth: On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker.
MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Ms Burch, sit down.
Mr Smyth: Ms Burch just said “bald-faced lie”. If she is accusing the member of a lie she should do it through a substantive motion or she should withdraw.
MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Burch, it is unparliamentary. Will you withdraw?
MS BURCH: I will withdraw the word “lie”. I think the truth speaks for itself.
MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: No, unreservedly.
MS BURCH: I withdraw, Madam Deputy Speaker. But as we know, Mr Seselja’s comment “have no plans to enter federal politics” was not the case, that he clearly had plans to enter federal politics, which now his former friend and mentor Senator Gary Humphries knows only too well. So there were a number of people with whom Mr Seselja had not been quite clear with the truth. This does beg the question that