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Tuesday, 25 November 2003
Page: 17963

Senator FORSHAW (10:08 PM) —by leave—I rise to speak because during his remarks in closing the second reading debate, Senator Ian Macdonald referred to the fact that he was disappointed that Senator McLucas, another Queensland senator, was not able to participate in the debate tonight when she was listed on the speakers list. Because I know that people are listening to the broadcast tonight—particularly people in Queensland who may have a particular interest in this issue—I think it is important to point out that this bill was not listed on today's order of business. In fact, it was listed for either tomorrow or Thursday on the forward order of business. It was not listed for today. It was because of the ineptitude and the inability of the government to manage its program that it has had to bring on this legislation at short notice tonight. This has meant that speakers who may have otherwise wished to participate in the debate—including, I know, Senator McLucas—were unable to do so.

I know that the debate will continue through the committee stage—I assume in the next few days or in the next couple of weeks—and I know that Senator McLucas, who has a deep interest in this issue, will be able to come along here and represent the state of Queensland and the Labor Party in the excellent manner in which she has always done so when the debate resumes. I wanted to put that on the record because of the cheap shot that was just played by Senator Ian Macdonald.

Question negatived.

Original question agreed to.

Bill read a second time.

Ordered that consideration of this bill in Committee of the Whole be made an order of the day for the next day of sitting.