Page 421 - Week 02 - Tuesday, 14 February 2017
Cameron at the Q Society on the weekend and the sort of diatribe we saw coming from George Christensen at the Q Society on the weekend. That is what they actually feared, and that is why we formed the view that the plebiscite was not a positive way to proceed.
Of course, we should be mindful of the fact that parliament should do its job on this matter. Parliament changed the laws the first time under Prime Minister Howard. It was fine for the parliament to do it then, but it is not fine for the parliament to do it now. That is the hypocrisy in this matter.
In terms of Ms Le Couteur’s description of shameful, I think it would be fair to say Ms Le Couteur was quite clearly referring to the outcome. Ms Le Couteur had no intention of casting disrespect on the High Court, and I think that that was perfectly clear in the way she expressed her remarks. Mr Hanson sort of said, “Oh, well, maybe that is not what she meant,” but he made the point anyway—the classic Mr Hanson approach: put it out there, allude to something to cast a smear but then back away and not quite have the courage to really make the point. Just hang it out there in case and make the suggestion.
It was a shameful outcome
MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Sit down, Mr Rattenbury. Mr Rattenbury, it is unparliamentary to reflect on people’s character in the way that you have, specifically in relation to whether or not Mr Hanson has courage. I ask you to withdraw.
MR RATTENBURY: I will withdraw, at your request, Madam Deputy Speaker. But I note that Mr Hanson was also reflecting on Ms Le Couteur’s character quite freely in the observations he was making. But I make it quite clear that Ms Le Couteur’s point simply was—
Mr Hanson: Madam Deputy Speaker—
MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Sit down, Mr Rattenbury. You do not need to take the point of order, Mr Hanson. I will deal with this. Mr Rattenbury, I asked you to withdraw. I did not ask you to reflect on my request for you to withdraw. If you want to question my ruling, there are ways and means of doing it.
MR RATTENBURY: Madam Deputy Speaker—
MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: I have not finished yet. Having listened to what Mr Hanson said—Mr Hanson said that we might like to reflect on Hansard, and he drew the chair’s attention to what might be in Hansard—that is not a reflection on the character of the person spoken about.
On the question that Mr Ramsay’s amendment be agreed to, Mr Rattenbury, you have the floor.
MR RATTENBURY: The simple point Ms Le Couteur was making was that it was a shameful outcome because of what the federal parliament had done when passing the