Tuesday, 11 February 2020
National Integrity Commission Bill 2018 (No. 2); Consideration of Senate Message
It goes to a call to the member who's first risen. On these motions from the Senate, the rule has a particular impact. Whoever's responsible for the motion determines whether or not we end up with this being placed in private member's business, which will allow speeches to be given or whether it goes onto government business and no-one will ever be allowed to speak on the bill. In this case, there was someone on their feet well in advance of the minister, and it makes a significant difference.
The Manager of Opposition Business has made his point. I am going to try and find the page in the Practice, because I have had cause to look at this before. What I might do is rule and, then, if you need me to find the page, we'll have a bit of a history lesson. But it's certainly here. This arose a number of times in the last parliament, thanks to the Manager of Opposition Business, I have to say. That is right. I didn't see the member for Melbourne jump. But what Practice makes clear is, even with private members' motions that have come from the Senate, there is ample precedent where a minister on behalf other government has chosen to take carriage of it and on those occasions they've been given precedence on the call. I can find the page. That's certainly very clear in Practice. And where a duty minister—in doing that, what the government is doing is saying they are going to take it as government business. As for your comment about something becoming government business and it never seeing the light of day, that's a comment you make. But it's up to the government, obviously, how it structures its agenda.
I have taken the point of order. I apologise to the Leader of the Greens, but in this instance, even if he had—there's no need for him to be on his feet, unless he's stretching his legs or something. There is no need for you to be on your feet, because I'm not going to interrupt myself—certainly not this early in the day! Even if he had jumped first, which I accept he did, because of what's clear in Practice, I would have called the duty minister, who, by just jumping, is indicating they wish to take it as government business.
Where we are is the minister has almost moved—I'm going to get him to move it again, because I need to state the question before anything is before the House. I'm giving the minister the call.
The minister has moved that the question be put.
For the information of members, in terms of that ruling I made, because the Manager of Opposition Business did raise a point of order, in Practice, it says with respect to this circumstance:
Speakers have also taken the view that in respect of business such as consideration of Senate messages, the call should, in the first instance, be given to the Minister or Parliamentary Secretary expected to have responsibility for the matter.
The question is that the motion be put.