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Monday, 29 February 2016
Page: 1233


Senator DASTYARI (New South Wales) (10:25): Mr President, I seek leave to make a short statement.

The PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for three minutes.

Senator DASTYARI: I was going to seek leave to make a long statement, but I will deal with it in a short one. I think it is important to get some of the facts on the table about what exactly is going on with this process. What has gone on is a sham inquiry being rammed through as part of an already-done deal to do in a handful of crossbench senators. And let's be clear: right now the government are walking the halls of the media offices on level 2 of this building bragging about how they have got everything right and set up for a double-D election on 2 July. Why? Because they will then be able to do the ABCC. They will then be able to do registered orgs. They will then be able to do a series of legislation which you have been in here and opposed.

We will fight these issues. We will fight for these causes. But, Senator Di Natale, you have walked in and done in half of your own senators in a double-D situation. You did not do the modelling. You did not look at it. Let's be clear: the self-interest from the Greens is that, in a half-Senate election, wiping out the minor parties and the primary vote that they get is good for the Greens. A double-D election will result in either Senator Simms or Senator Hanson-Young not being here, and that is another win for Senator Rhiannon. That is another win for Senator Di Natale. That is another win for them as well. It is win-win for them: it is either more senators or getting rid of some of the senators that they do not like.

But, frankly, the bit that is horrible here is this: how on earth do you not have a proper debate? How on earth do you not allow the proper different organisations and community organisations out there to have a say? There was a half-day hearing. Senator Di Natale, you should hear what your colleagues are saying about you when you are not in the room. You should hear what they are saying to the journalists. You should hear what they say about you. It is not very pleasant at all. This is a Greens party that has completely lost its way. This is a Greens party that will ram through electoral reforms with a half-day Senate inquiry—the same Greens party that will sell out tax transparency; the same Greens party that will sell out cause after cause, issue after issue on some kind of a pragmatic road towards getting some political outcome that they want. And, Senator Di Natale, you will be held accountable—if not by us, then certainly by your colleagues.

The PRESIDENT: This all commenced when I asked if any senator would like the question put on any of those committee motions. Does anyone wish to have any of those motions put? We shall now proceed.