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Wednesday, 7 June 1989
Page: 3508


Senator POWELL(10.32) —I will spare the Committee any elaborate defence. However, I would like to point out that Senator Alston's remarks about the general handling of this legislation need some response. I find them extraordinarily patronising apart from being a demonstration, to use his words, of fits of pique. Just because people do not agree with Senator Alston does not mean that they have not discussed and considered the issues concerned. All he can say with any accuracy is that he was not agreed with on this occasion. That is factual. The rest of it is a load of garbage arising from the fact that Senator Alston is obviously not satisfied with having tied up the Parliament for an inordinate length of time and also he has had to find some sort of whipping person and he has found him. Fair enough. I do not accept the patronising approach that suggests that the Democrats had too much to do. Certainly he may feel a bit put upon that people do not agree with him. He knows that he is not agreed with, that his view is not agreed with. We chose not to take up extensive time of the Parliament in this matter. We chose to put our position clearly at the beginning and then to let matters flow. It is a shame that the time of the Parliament has been so abused by this process. I hope that what might have been a new shining light on the front bench can toughen up a little bit and take it a bit better in future.

Amendment negatived.

Bill agreed to.

Bills reported without amendment; report adopted.