Wednesday, 5 December 2018
Consideration of Legislation
That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent the Member for Port Adelaide from moving the following motion immediately:
(1) notes the Government has failed to observe all due processes to allow Members, businesses and State Governments to properly scrutinise legislation presented to the House today; and
(2) calls on the Government to schedule this bill for debate in the first sitting week of 2019.
Mr Speaker, I would put it to you that the suspension of standing orders we have just passed is too similar to the suspension of standing orders being moved by the member for Port Adelaide to be considered given that the amendment moved by the member for McMahon was in exactly the same terms as the suspension of standing orders motion and we just voted to suspend standing orders to do exactly what the government intended and the Clerk was about to read the title of the bill to begin the second reading debate. That suspension of standing orders is very similar to the one we voted on about 15 minutes ago.
Standing order 94(a) applies! For the Leader of the House: I had called the Clerk for the next item of business but the member for Port Adelaide had been on his feet. I thought he had been on his feet in error ready to speak on the bill. I certainly take the point of the Leader of the House about similarity of language. But the only thing that has been moved on my left-hand side is an amendment, so I am going to allow the member for Port Adelaide to proceed. But I forewarn the House that, once a suspension of this nature has been moved and dealt with, it can't be repeated immediately. The member for Port Adelaide has the call.
Thank you, Mr Speaker. The Leader of the House famously said some years ago that the convention has always been that the bill should be introduced and then debated the following sitting week, not the next day. Apparently, debate the next day was some abuse of process in this House! But he's gone even further: he is not only debating the bill tomorrow; he wants to debate this extraordinary Venezuelan-style intervention in a market only a couple of hours after we have been presented with an explanatory memorandum that runs to more than 100 pages. We asked for a briefing on this bill last Monday and got crickets from the other side—from the Treasurer and from the new energy minister. There was no attempt at all to engage with the opposition in providing us with the level of detail all members of parliament deserve when considering a piece of legislation as significant as this Venezuelan neo-Marxist form of market intervention by the so-called Liberal government.