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Thursday, 3 December 2015
Page: 9930


Senator BRANDIS (QueenslandAttorney-General, Vice-President of the Executive Council and Leader of the Government in the Senate) (21:13): Well, I do not, Senator, because for a start you assume that courts cannot make mistakes. The entire appellate system is premised on the assumption that courts do make mistakes that have to be corrected on appeal or on further appeal. Senator, the reason we have courts is not because judges are infallible. I know many judges, I am very friendly with many judges and I know none of them to be infallible, nor would they consider themselves to be infallible. We have an independent court system so that people can have independent justice, an independent disposal of a dispute. The judicial review that protects against error in this case is based on the administrative law model. It is that simple. It is based on an administrative law model of judicial review of an administrative action, that is, the issuance of the notice rather than on the judicial model. It seems to be implicit in your question that we should strike down the entire edifice of administrative law as being somehow fundamentally unjust. Now, I do not agree with that.