House debates

Thursday, 1 August 2019



9:47 am

Photo of Christian PorterChristian Porter (Pearce, Liberal Party, Attorney-General) Share this | Hansard source

Indeed. So what I might do is commence by reading from the Labor Party media release, which is essentially as far as their policy went on a Commonwealth integrity commission:

In government, Labor will continue to consult with experts on the design details of the Commission.

Legislation to establish the National Integrity Commission will be introduced into Parliament within the first 12 months of a Shorten Labor Government.

What's fascinating is that it's totally unreasonable that we take more than three weeks to do something as complicated as design an integrity commission, but, had the Shorten Labor government become the Shorten Labor government, 12 months would have been an entirely reasonable period of time for them to do that. That does strike me as something of a double standard in this area.

It is true, for the benefit of the shadow Attorney-General, that we are very substantially more advanced than they ever were in the design of something as complicated as an integrity commission. It is true that, in December last year, the Prime Minister and I announced our commitment to an integrity commission. We did that with a discussion paper of over 3,000 words. It is true that the commitment of members opposite to an integrity commission is effectively a press release with six, what you might call—or they call—design principles. So vague are the design principles that no-one knows what on earth it is that they're committing to by their commitment to an integrity commission. So vague are their design principles that they would have needed to consult experts for 12 months about what it is they actually promised to do before they introduced legislation. But, somehow, the screaming urgency of this is so great that 12 months would have been a reasonable period of time for them for something this complicated, but three weeks should be the time limit for the government.

Mr Giles interjecting


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