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Wednesday, 28 November 2012
Page: 13733

Prime Minister


Ms JULIE BISHOP (CurtinDeputy Leader of the Opposition) (15:14): My question is to the Prime Minister. I remind the Prime Minister that I have asked her three times today to rule out that she wrote to the Commissioner for Corporate Affairs vouching for the bona fides of the AWU Workplace Reform Association, and she is yet to do so. I will give her another opportunity. Did she write to the WA Commissioner for Corporate Affairs vouching for the bona fides of the AWU Workplace Reform Association—yes or no?

Mr Albanese: Speaker, on a point of order, in the Deputy Leader of the Opposition's own words, this is the same question. The Prime Minister has answered these questions. She has answered them for almost two decades.

The SPEAKER: The Leader of the House will resume his seat.

Mr Pyne: On the point of order, Madam Speaker, as I am sure you are aware, the standing order is that a question fully answered cannot be renewed. This question has clearly not been answered—a point happily made by the Leader of the House in trying to suggest that it has been answered, when clearly it has not. And why hasn't it been answered, Prime Minister?

The SPEAKER: The Manager of Opposition Business will resume his seat. The Prime Minister has the call.






Ms GILLARD (LalorPrime Minister) (15:15): We are at the stage where, if they are not getting their questions out of the Michael Smith blog then they are basing them on newspaper reports from a number of weeks ago. Once again, we are in a situation where the Deputy Leader of the Opposition is asserting things she has got no sources for, except she read them somewhere.

Honourable members interjecting

The SPEAKER: The Prime Minister will resume her seat. The Manager of Opposition Business will resume his seat. I understand the issue that is before the House. Member for Kennedy, I understand that the issue you have raised is of great concern to many members in the House, particularly in that very area, but I would ask everybody to show greater respect to the parliament and to individuals' positions on issues that they are passionate about and that their constituencies are passionate about.

Mr Pyne: On a point of order on relevance, Madam Speaker, if the Prime Minister finds this question so tedious and easy to answer, why doesn't she just answer it: yes or no?

The SPEAKER: The Manager of Opposition Business will resume his seat. The Prime Minister has the call.

Ms GILLARD: There is no amount of overacting that makes this line of questioning any more credible. The Deputy Leader of the Opposition, having shredded her credibility yesterday, is now going through the files of old newspaper clippings.

Honourable members interjecting

Ms GILLARD: It is truly pathetic—and the bellowing does not help. At some point the Leader of the Opposition has to say what he stands for in these matters. Does he back the Deputy Leader of the Opposition in yesterday for her dishonest statements or not? This sleaze and smear out of Michael Smith blogs—how pathetic is it? All over to you.