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Wednesday, 29 August 2001
Page: 26969

Senator HARRADINE (9:47 PM) —Given the announcements or the indications that have been given by the opposition and other groups within the Senate, the result of which would mean that this legislation would not go through this parliament tonight, at least in an unamended form, and given the fact that the House of Representatives has now drawn stumps for the night and will not be sitting until tomorrow morning, I am wondering about this question of the cut-off. If the government wishes to proceed, I will vote to exempt this bill from the cut-off but during the debate there may emerge questions about the international law and things might emerge that normally would have been the subject of consideration by a legislation committee on reference of a bill.

The government will argue—and it has a valid argument, I suppose—for this legislation to protect the actions that have already been taken with respect to the Tampa. I am not in favour of the legislation so far as it affects other vessels that may or may not come here, but I think it would be desirable for the chamber to consider amending the legislation to redefine the term `ship' to refer only to the Tampa. I just foreshadow that here tonight and I look forward to hearing from the government, the opposition, the Democrats, Senator Brown and Senator Harris, and whoever—

Honourable senator interjecting

Senator HARRADINE —Yes, and Senator Boswell, of course. That may be a way around it. There may be some obligation for us to protect the actions that have already been taken in respect of the vessel Tampa. Whether we can fully consider that issue tonight remains to be seen, but I certainly will be voting for this piece of legislation to be exempted from the cut-off motion.

Question resolved in the affirmative.