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Ad ban report desecrates senate committee system



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SENATOR W A R W IC K RARER LIBERAL SENATOR FOR QUEENSLAND

SHADOW MINISTER FOR ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND THE A.C.T.

AD BAN REPORT DESECRATES SENATE COMMITTEE SYSTEM

Shadow Minister for Administrative Services, Senator Warwick Parer, today described the majority (Labor) recommendations of the Senate Select Committee on Political Broadcasts and Political Disclosures Bill as a sham which desecrated the Senate Committee system.

Senator Parer said that it was obvious that the Government perpetrated a hoax in spending thousands of dollars conducting the inquiry and taking submissions proffered in good faith by many interest groups and citizens.

"Labor's position on the report was predetermined," Senator Parer said.

"The Government had disregarded the advice of many experts and interest groups in favour of its original agenda - to whitewash the sordid implications of its ban on political advertising in the electronic media at all times for 365 days of the year by all political parties and all interest groups.

"The majority recommendations would lead to the paradoxical situation where political advertisements are longer than the surrounding news stories reporting political events. If half-minute advertisements "trivialise" political communicating, then would the majority use the same logic to impose minimum time lengths on news reports? The ALP and

Democrats imply that voters cannot be trusted to receive political news in advertisements less than two minutes long; so do they also argue that thirty second news "grabs" should also be banned?

'The recommendations ignore the Human Rights Commissioner's criticisms of a "talking heads" or minimum time limit requirement."

Contact: Senator Parer 06 277 3670 28 November 1991

COMMONWEALTH PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARY MICAH

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