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Tuesday, 8 November 2016
Page: 3143

Day, Mr Bob, AO

Mr SHORTEN (MaribyrnongLeader of the Opposition) (15:06): My question is to the Prime Minister. Yesterday and today the Prime Minister confirmed that he has been aware that, for every single day of the 45th Parliament, the composition of the Senate was potentially illegitimate. Why did the Prime Minister decide to keep this information secret from the Australian people? Surely, the Australian people have a right to know that there was doubt over whether the composition of the Australian Senate was constitutional.

Mr TURNBULL (WentworthPrime Minister) (15:07): I have answered this question previously. The Special Minister of State proceeded deliberately, responsibly; he fastidiously got to the bottom of the factual context; and he sought legal advice, as he should. The suggestion that the Special Minister of State should have gone off half-cocked without knowing the facts, without knowing the law—that is the sort of incompetence you would expect from a Labor government.