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Wednesday, 10 May 1989
Page: 2154


Senator SHORT(11.27) —It rather sounds as though the Government reckons it has the States over a barrel, which may or may not be correct. Obviously we are not going to get a sensible answer out of the Minister on that one. Setting that aside, what about the prospect-which I would think is a very real prospect indeed-of other interested parties taking the matter to the High Court of Australia for testing? The honourable senator talks about negotiations with the States. We are aware from the evidence that was given to the Joint Select Committee on Corporations Legislation that there was a very wide range of concern by a very wide range of parties and organisations in Australia, not just the States, about the constitutional situation. What proposals does the Government have in mind for the timeframe for the potential testing of the constitutional validity by parties other than the States?