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Wednesday, 13 November 2002
Page: 6250

Senator MURPHY (4:10 PM) —by leave—From my point of view, as many times as we have seen the government introduce bills into this place with regard to industrial relations, whether it is the rebadged unfair dismissal laws that are now the fair dismissal laws, the fact that you try and argue that this is an urgent bill is just a nonsense. You have had more than enough opportunities—

Senator Ian Campbell —We are not arguing about whether it is urgent; we are arguing about whether we want to vote on it!

Senator MURPHY —You want to vote on it because you are saying it is urgent.

Senator Ian Campbell —It is not an urgency motion. Read the statement!

Senator MURPHY —You are not saying it is urgent—I see. Forgive me for being wrong. I was listening to the monitor in my room and I thought the argument coming from Senator Alston was that it was urgent. Nevertheless, we are arguing about it being exempt from the cut-off.

Senator Ian Campbell —No, it isn't!

Senator MURPHY —Isn't it? So what is the purpose of you proposing a motion—

The ACTING DEPUTY PRESIDENT (Senator Brandis)—Through the chair, Senator Murphy, please.

Senator MURPHY —Through you, Mr Acting Deputy President, what is the purpose of the government seeking to exempt it from the cut-off? If it is not urgent, do not worry about it. Do not waste the time of this chamber and let us get on with the business that we have before us today. That is what we should do. If this is not urgent and you do not want it exempt from the cut-off, do not waste the Senate's time.

Senator Ian Campbell —That is not what the cut-off is about, you goose!

The ACTING DEPUTY PRESI-DENT —Order! Senator Campbell.

Senator MURPHY —This is an amazing contribution from Senator Campbell— amazing, but consistent. What can I say? I am opposed to the exemption from the cut-off. I would hope that the government would try and get its own house in order and bring legislation properly before this chamber in a useful type of way. At the end of the day you will then get a proper debate about this legislation and maybe we might just get some good outcomes.

Question put:

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