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Monday, 7 November 2016
Page: 1920


Senator LEYONHJELM (New South Wales) (13:06): I was not going to participate in this debate, but I cannot let that last speech go by. There is no imputation of corruption here, and it is utterly disgraceful of a senator to suggest there is. Former Senator Day is a good and decent man. What he was trying to do in relation to the arrangements with his office was save the taxpayers money and provide a better working environment for his staff. There is no imputation of misconduct either, and the suggestion of linking it to a federal ICAC is utterly disgraceful.

This is a complex legal question: whether or not he was in technical breach of the Constitution in relation to the guarantee of the loan on the office. That is the issue. There is no legal certainty about this, as Senator Ryan pointed out. This is a matter for the court, and, until the court decides this, there should be no stones thrown. I am very confident that the court will come back and say this is too remote a pecuniary interest to actually be in breach of the Constitution, but in any case it is absolutely not corruption.