House debates

Monday, 2 December 2019

Questions without Notice

Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction

2:38 pm

Photo of Mark DreyfusMark Dreyfus (Isaacs, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Attorney General) Share this | | Hansard source

My question is to the Attorney-General. I refer to the Attorney-General's confirmation that he was in the room when the Prime Minister called the New South Wales police commissioner about the criminal investigation into the minister for emissions reduction. Before the phone call did the Prime Minister ask the Attorney-General whether the phone call should be made? Did the Attorney-General seek advice from his department or agencies on whether the Prime Minister calling the commissioner one of his 'best friends' gave rise to a further conflict?

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

I was present during the call. It was a very short call. The descriptions of that call, provided by the Prime Minister and Commissioner Fuller, have been absolutely accurate. But I won't be lectured to about taking advice by someone who has an 8-0 record of referring coalition members to the police: eight referrals; zero success—nothing! For the shadow Attorney-General the day the letter of referral goes off is a serious day in the media. We're up early and we finish late. We're before every radio person in Australia. We're on the front page of every newspaper with the very, very serious referral of the former A-G to the AFP, and the other six coalition members to the police. But then the day when nothing happens, when the inevitable response comes from the AFP that this is a big fat no—nothing to answer, no investigation, nothing—where is the silence? Absolute silence. That's what happened with respect to those eight referrals, isn't it, member for Isaacs? There was no substance, no merit, no nothing—eight referrals and nothing.