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Monday, 21 May 2012
Page: 4757


Mr PYNE (SturtManager of Opposition Business) (15:03): I move:

That so much of the standing and sessional orders be suspended as would prevent the Member for Sturt moving immediately—That the House considers the statement made this day by the Member for Dobell especially in light of the clear indication of the House given before Question Time that the House wishes this matter to be debated.

Before question time, two votes were taken in this House to gag members of the opposition—the Deputy Leader of the Opposition and me—on a motion to take note of the statement by the member for Dobell. Both of those votes were won by the opposition and, because of the time running out for the suspension of standing orders due to its being counted, the opportunity to debate that motion was not given. Hence, I am moving now—this is just taking up my time, Madam Deputy Speaker.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Manager of Opposition Business understands full well that points of order can be taken.

Mr Albanese: Madam Deputy Speaker, on a point of order, the Manager of Opposition Business makes a statement that is not correct at all. It is the case that we have dealt with this issue.

Mr Hockey interjecting

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Leader of the House will resume his seat. The Manager of Opposition Business will refer to the motion before the chair—and that is for me to determine, not the member for North Sydney.

Mr PYNE: Madam Deputy Speaker, I have not yet been given the opportunity to speak to the motion. In fact, this matter was not resolved before question time because it was never put to a vote, and that is why it is perfectly in order for it to be put again. If the Leader of the House knew his job, he would know that. The reason why standing orders must be suspended—

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Manager of Opposition Business is not assisting!

Government members interjecting

Mr PYNE: This is just taking up my time, Madam Deputy Speaker.

Mr Albanese: Madam Deputy Speaker, I ask the Manager of Opposition Business to withdraw.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Manager of Opposition Business.

Mr PYNE: What on earth would I be withdrawing, Madam Deputy Speaker—that he does not know how to do his job?

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Manager of Opposition Business will withdraw so we can progress with the debate.

Mr PYNE: I withdraw. The reason why standing orders must be suspended is that the statement by the member for Dobell today is the most important matter before the House. The fact that the government moved before question time to gag debate on the member for Dobell's statement was an extraordinary act in the continuing protection racket that surrounds the member for Dobell coming from the government.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Manager of Opposition Business will not use that inflammatory language in respect of this issue.

Mr Albanese: Madam Deputy Speaker, I raise a point of order. The Acting Prime Minister withdrew a statement earlier today in question time after an objection by those opposite. I take offence at that comment, as the Manager of Opposition Business took offence at the previous comment, and I ask that he withdraw.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Leader of the House will resume his seat. I am not going to ask the Manager of Opposition Business to withdraw but I will ask him to return to the motion before the chair.

Mr PYNE: Thank you Madam Deputy Speaker. The House has on many occasions dealt with very serious suggestions when a member of parliament has been accused of bringing the parliament into disrepute. We have an 1,100-page report from Fair Work Australia into the member for Dobell.