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Thursday, 27 May 2004
Page: 29400

Mr ANDREWS (Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service) —Mr Speaker, I seek the indulgence of the chair to add to an answer.

The SPEAKER —The minister may proceed.

Mr ANDREWS —In quoting the member for Hunter, I referred to a quote which was also used by my predecessor the then Minister for Employment, Workplace Relations and Small Business. The quote, on 17 November 1998, from the member for Hunter, was:

Well my wife constantly tells me she could afford to put on one person or would like to put on one more person, but is fearful of unfair dismissals ...

I table the press release.

The SPEAKER —There is a certain absurdity about this exercise. I will hear the member for Hunter, and the matter will be closed.

Mr Fitzgibbon —I do appreciate your patience, Mr Speaker. What the minister has just confirmed is that he was not quoting me from the Small Business Show; he was quoting former Minister Reith.

The SPEAKER —The member for Hunter has made his point and will resume his seat. I call the patient member for Bruce.