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Thursday, 25 September 2014
Page: 7258

Senator XENOPHON (South Australia) (21:07): I indicate that I cannot support the Australian Greens amendments for a number of reasons. I have concerns with respect to the drafting. I do not understand the exemption as drafted. It appears to be internally inconsistent with the other amendments in respect of that. I think that there ought to be a public interest defence in respect of this. This seems to me to be somewhat too broad. I can understand the intent of what Senator Ludlam is trying to do but I think that in the way that it is drafted it is simply too broad. Also, there appears to be issues with respect to the drafting. This is not a criticism of Senator Ludlam but I think that I cannot support the amendment, principally for those two reasons.

If the amendment spoke in terms of public interest defence—that matters that were released were clearly in the public interest—then I would be minded to support it, but given its drafting I cannot support it.