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Thursday, 13 October 2011
Page: 7297

Senator NASH (New South WalesDeputy Leader of The Nationals in the Senate) (09:59): What an absolute show of hypocrisy from that side of the chamber from the holier-than-thou Greens. We have sat on this side of the chamber, colleagues, for years and years and years listening to Senator Bob Brown railing about how we had to have honesty in this chamber, how we had to have opportunity for free speech and how we had to be accountable. Well, all that this motion does today is ask for similar treatment for the Greens, as was expected of our side of the chamber. I think, colleagues, that is an entirely fair thing. I think anybody in the community would think that was an entirely fair thing—and we finally have Senator Sarah Hanson-Young join us in the chamber. I understand that she will not have an opportunity to speak, so good timing! So we have got silent Sarah, we have got squibbing Sarah, we have got squirrelled away Sarah, who has turned up now to make it look good, so she is in the chamber.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: Senator Nash, you have to refer to Senator Hanson-Young by her correct title. Senator Milne, did you have a point of order?

Senator Milne: Yes, thank you. The point of order was precisely in the rules of debate—

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: I have ruled on that, Senator Milne.

Senator Milne: personal reflection is unacceptable.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: Thank you. Senator Nash, you have the call.

Senator NASH: So—Senator Hanson-Young, who is silent; Senator Hanson-Young, who is squibbing; Senator Hanson-Young, who has been squirrelled away; Senator Hanson-Young, who wants to have a shot at the deputy leadership. But this is extraordinary, given the hypocrisy. What we have is the Greens, who have one standard for themselves and one standard for everybody else. They have one rule for themselves and one rule for everybody else. What is really interesting, colleagues, is they have always had that. They have always had that, but it is just that now we have this cobbled together Greens-Independents-Labor government there is finally some scrutiny from out there in the community and from the media of what the Greens are actually doing.

Senator Bob Brown interjecting

Senator NASH: Jump on in if you like, Senator Brown, because goodness knows what you said before did not make a lot of sense—very, very touchy. What we need to see is some equity here. Isn't it interesting that the minute anybody in the media actually questions what the Greens are doing all of a sudden it is the 'hate media'? It cannot possibly be a balanced inquiry about what the Greens are actually doing on an issue. No, it is the 'hate media', because there is no way in the world that the Greens could possibly be wrong on anything, apparently, according to the Greens. According to the Greens, they are correct on everything and God forbid that anybody should question what they are doing. Isn't the timing interesting, colleagues, as to the moment Senator Hanson-Young arrived? So we have seen this morning the Leader of the Greens and the current Deputy Leader of the Greens protecting their senator, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, because I reckon it is not very far from Senator Hanson-Young's office to the chamber. I am pretty close to her and I reckon I could do it in about 20 seconds or so. But, no, Senator Hanson-Young arrived in time not to speak. Normally we try to arrive in this chamber in time to speak. Normally it is a bit of a rush. Normally we have to fly. Normally we have to dash in here by the skin of our teeth to get in here to speak. Senator Hanson-Young is the only senator I have ever seen arrive in time not to speak. It is extraordinary, when we have given Senator Hanson-Young the opportunity this morning to have her say. All we have said is about the opportunity for Senator Hanson-Young to respond, which is only right and fair, and yet she had to hide behind her leader and her current deputy leader and swan in and sit down like a good little girl. Perhaps Senator Brown actually gave her a call and said, 'Leave your office now.' What we have seen from this side of the chamber is absolute hypocrisy. When we saw yesterday Senator Siewert stand up and talk about the coalition guillotining in the past, given that we had a guillotine yesterday—

Opposition senators: No, five!

Senator NASH: Thank you, there were five. The ultimate hypocrisy is why yesterday Senator Siewert did not take it up with the government for guillotining. Why on earth was she talking about us guillotining? If she and the Greens were so concerned about a guillotine, they should have taken it up with their coalition partners, the Labor Party senators over there—the Labor government. They were the ones that put the guillotine on, not us. This is the hypocrisy and the complete lack of principle that we have seen from the Greens yesterday and in previous times and it is only now that finally it is starting to get out there among the public that the Greens are nothing but a party of hypocrisy with one rule for themselves and one rule for everybody else.

Question put:

That the motion (Senator Abetz's) be agreed to.

The Senate divided. [10:08]

(The President—Senator Hogg)

Senator Feeney did not vote, to compensate for the vacancy caused by the resignation of Senator Coonan.

Question negatived.