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Thursday, 20 October 1983
Page: 2016

Mr PEACOCK —My question, which is addressed to the Prime Minister, flows from the answer given by the Special Minister of State. I remind him of his threat to Mr Combe that he would release transcripts of intercepted conversations. On the basis of the test laid down by the Special Minister of State, which head of which Federal authority did he check with and obtain consent from before he made that threat?

Mr HAWKE —Unfortunately, as is so often the case with the Leader of the Opposition, the premise upon which he based his question is false. I content myself by answering him in this way: In respect of all the matters with regard to Mr Combe, both the Leader of the Opposition and I had the opportunity-for him , the ordeal-of being in the witness box, being subject to questions, examination and cross-examination. I rest more than content with the judgment that can be made by anyone who witnessed the efforts of the Leader of the Opposition as compared to mine. The issue involved in his question is one which will be considered by the-

Mr Peacock —No, I am talking about your threat. That is not before Mr Justice Hope.

Mr HAWKE —All the circumstances surrounding my actions and those of the Government are before the Royal Commissioner. As I have said before, I and the Government look forward to the report of the Royal Commissioner into all the actions of the Government, including myself, in this matter. When that report comes down, I will be more than happy to have a full debate in regard to all issues associated with it. I look forward to that debate much more, I am sure, than does the Leader of the Opposition.