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Thursday, 16 October 2003
Page: 21637

Ms MACKLIN (10:22 AM) —The Higher Education Support Bill 2003 is all about putting up university fees so that Australian students and their families have to pay another 30 per cent on top of what this government has already imposed on them. This government wants to allow universities to charge $150,000 for a university degree, even though the Minister for Education, Science and Training got his medical degree for absolutely nothing. This minister would not have gone to university and paid $150,000—he has admitted that—yet he wants to impose on other medical students that they will pay $150,000 to go to university. That is the implication of what is being debated here today.

The government also wants to tell universities how they will run their industrial relations. It wants to instruct the universities about what will be taught in our universities. How is it that this minister in this place knows better than every university around the country what should or should not be taught in our universities? It is an absolute disgrace that this man, with his big boots, is going to get around this country and tell universities—with his jackboots on—what is going to be done in universities. I move:

That so much of sessional and standing orders be suspended as would prevent the member for Jagajaga moving the following motion:

That this House reconsider the exercise of standing order 92—limitation of debate—for this bill and now allow a full debate on a matter of supreme national importance for the future of Australia's university system.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER —The bill is under the guillotine and your motion cannot be accepted. It being 10.25 a.m., the time allotted for the second reading debate of the bill has expired. The question is that the bill be now read a second time.

Question put.