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Wednesday, 25 August 1999
Page: 7731


The DEPUTY PRESIDENT —Yesterday I invited Senator Faulkner to withdraw the allegation that other senators had been guilty of `rorting'. Senator Faulkner disputed the suggestion that the expression is contrary to standing order 193 when used of senators and other office holders protected by that standing order, and I indicated that I would consider the matter.

The term `rorting' has a range of meanings, from clever trickery or manipulation to embezzlement. Although it has been used without objection with reference to office holders protected under standing order 193, I think that, where it carries an implication of dishonesty or illegality, it ought to be regarded as unparliamentary just as any other expressions with that implication are so regarded.

I thought that the expression as used by Senator Faulkner carried that implication, although, on looking at the Hansard record of his remarks, I find that he also referred to `pork-barrelling', which is not usually regarded as implying dishonesty or illegality. As with all questions of unparliamentary language, the chair will have regard to the context in which an expression is used to determine whether it is contrary to standing order 193.