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Thursday, 5 December 2002
Page: 7259

Senator BARNETT (11:56 AM) —In closing, I wish to make a few brief comments. This is about proper process; we are not following it. I foreshadow my view that, in the very near future, there will be a High Court challenge to this legislation. It is full of holes and it is not constitutionally tight or comprehensive. I foreshadow that that will happen because of this ramshackle legislation. I also indicate and highlight that the euthanasia bill was Northern Territory legislation; it was not legislation of a state. That difference has been made clear in the past and it is made clear again today. So that argument does not hold up. We should be following a democratic process.

COAG is not recognised in the Constitution and so I do not agree with the views put by Senator Knowles that, because they have agreed, therefore we must agree. We are authors of our own destiny. I will not say any more on this. I was hoping to leave a few minutes for others who are wishing to move amendments in this time frame, but this will be very difficult. I would foreshadow that, if there is no time to put the other amendments into the debate, I would like to incorporate the arguments in favour of those amendments. I urge all senators to support the amendment.

Question put:

That the amendment (Senator Barnett's) be agreed to.