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Tuesday, 3 December 2002
Page: 7038

Senator CHRIS EVANS (6:09 PM) —I do not know what arrangements Senator Boswell has with the minister and that is a matter for them. But this is a chamber that is concerned with more than just Senator Boswell and the minister. Quite frankly, if Senator Boswell is seeking recommittal of an amendment that was lost yesterday, given the progress we are making on this bill, I am disinclined to support that. Firstly, I would expect other groups around the chamber to be consulted before we recommit. Secondly, I would have thought at the very least that we ought to deal with the amendments we have not reached yet before people have a second go. In any event, I think some wider consultation in the chamber is required before these things suddenly get dropped on us.

It has appeared on the running sheet. I am told it is a recommittal—Senator Boswell seems a little unclear on that. But if it is a recommittal then I think he should have spoken more broadly to people around the chamber. Given the very slow progress that we are making—we have dealt with one amendment so far today in 1¾ hours—he is going to have to have a good story to convince me why we ought to go back and debate ones we knocked off yesterday. If we start doing that, I will be a very old man before we finish this debate.

I suggest to Senator Boswell that he speak to a few parties during the dinner break and make it clear what he is doing. When he does next get to his feet to try and advance this issue, at least we will all understand exactly what he is doing rather than spending 20 minutes in confusion working out exactly what we are dealing with.