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Thursday, 7 May 1987
Page: 2500

Senator JESSOP —by leave-Mr President, I wish to make a personal explanation. I refer to an article which appeared in the Bulletin yesterday, which was drawn to my attention. Having read it, I feel constrained to refer to a cable that was sent by Mark Twain to Associated Press many years ago as follows: `The report of my death was an exaggeration'. The particular part of the article to which I refer states as follows:

A complex proposal in South Australia involves Don Jessop retiring and his Senate seat going to Deputy Whip Neil Andrew, which would make his rural seat of Wakefield vacant for McLachlan.

As far as McLachlan and I are concerned, never the twain shall meet on this issue. I would like you, Mr President, to mark my words. I am sure that this sentiment would be shared by my colleague in the other place, Mr Neil Andrew. Perhaps I could offer a little advice to would-be politicians seeking blue ribbon Liberal seats. I know I might be slightly transgressing but I think it is important that I should record these views.

Senator Cook —I move that you have leave.

Senator JESSOP —I thank the honourable senator. The advice is this: Any member aspiring to be in Parliament should run the baptism of fire which is normal for us, particularly in a blue ribbon seat. Democratic processes are available in the Liberal Party and those processes should be followed. More significantly, it is preferable that any aspiring member should attempt to win a seat from the Australian Labor Party, as I did. Having done so, I have been here for nearly 20 years, which indicates that the baptism of fire that I referred to is very valuable experience for parliamentarians.

The PRESIDENT —Senator Jessop stretched the standing order on this matter.