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Wednesday, 1 April 1987
Page: 1870


Mr HOWARD (Leader of the Opposition) —I seek leave to make a personal explanation.


Madam SPEAKER —Does the Leader of the Opposition claim to have been misrepresented?


Mr HOWARD —Yes.


Madam SPEAKER —Please proceed.


Mr Young —We will have to change Standing Orders; this is happening every day.


Mr HOWARD —That would be very good, you lot are so hopeless on it. In the course of Question Time the Treasurer (Mr Keating) sought, through an answer, to maintain the proposition that there was an inconsistency in the attitude I, my Party and the coalition are now taking on the identity card and previous attitudes that I have taken on the ID card, namely in 1985 and in 1979. I have had the opportunity this morning to refresh my memory by obtaining access to the interdepartmental committee report that was prepared in 1979 when the Fraser Government looked at an ID card system.


Mr Cohen —Why are you looking at me?


Mr HOWARD —It is better than looking at some others. It is worth informing the House, as I freely acknowledge, that along with other members of the Fraser Cabinet we decided to look at an ID card. I do not shirk that, and why should I? We established an IDC and that IDC, amongst other things, visited the United States of America to look at the system that was operating there. The overwhelming recommendation of the IDC was against the introduction of a national identity card system. It is worth reading--


Madam SPEAKER —Order! The honourable member has shown the House how he has been misrepresented in regard to the ID card. The Leader of the Opposition is consistently attempting to debate issues with the indulgence of the Chair.


Mr HOWARD —This issue goes to the very heart of political combat in this chamber. There has been a pattern of misrepresentation by the Treasurer and the Prime Minister (Mr Hawke), and I am silenced on it.


Madam SPEAKER —Order! The Chair gives indulgence to honourable members of this House to make personal explanations which are supposed to show how they personally have been misrepresented.