Thursday, 5 December 2019
Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Amendment (Ensuring Integrity) Bill 2019; Second Reading
On a point of order, Mr Speaker, referring to the comments that you made from the chair earlier: your role and your office, we respect, as it says in Practice, as 'an essential feature of the parliamentary system'. We don't have a parliamentary system if there is no debate, by definition, and the normal mechanisms that you would have, as the chair, to throw people out, are actually irrelevant if they're not allowed to make speeches anyway. The precedent that is happening now is not a debate management motion but a complete silencing of anything other than the government voice. There is no precedent in the Menzies government. There is no precedent in the Howard government. What is happening right now is a change in the role of this House as to whether it is a parliamentary debating chamber or whether it is here only for the voice of the Prime Minister and his chosen ministers.