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Thursday, 12 December 2002
Page: 7864


Senator FAULKNER (Leader of the Opposition in the Senate) (12:23 PM) —Very briefly, I do not accept the arguments that have been put forward by the minister on this. The opposition's proposal is at least as constitutional and at least as workable as the government's model. If it is not constitutional, you have to ask yourself—as does this committee—why this was in the original bill. The truth is that, on the best advice that is available to the opposition and in relation to federal and state retired judges, there is a pool of at least 100 in that category as well as, of course, the extra 21: as I understand it, 12 judges who are presidents and presidential members, and nine who are deputy presidents. I think this is a very good and positive amendment and I urge the committee to support it.