House debates

Wednesday, 3 February 2021

Questions without Notice

Member for Hughes

3:13 pm

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

My question is to the Prime Minister. How can the Prime Minister maintain the member for Hughes is doing a good job when, as chair of this parliament's Joint Committee on Law Enforcement, he backed domestic terrorists who attacked the US Capitol, killed and injured police officers and menaced members of Congress? How can a law enforcement committee chair who defended that conduct—

Photo of Tony SmithTony Smith (Speaker) Share this | | Hansard source

The member for Isaacs can resume his seat.

Honourable members interjecting

If members interject when I'm about to speak to the House, they will follow the member for Rankin. I've made clear on a number of occasions, yesterday and today and many times previously, about the scope of questions that are outlined very clearly in the Practice, and I'm not going to go over it again. When we've been down this path, I think a year or so ago, I've also made clear I wasn't going—having made those rulings, and made clear the position at great length, as I did yesterday and have reaffirmed today—to allow members to wilfully ignore the ruling and ask a question that is out of order, simply to reflect on a member of the House. This offends a number of standing orders, not just the standing orders relating to ministerial responsibilities but also reflections on members. That is not to say these matters can't be canvassed in this House at all. The rules for question time are different to other times of the day.

The member for Isaacs can contribute in a matter of public importance, in 90-second statements or in an adjournment debate, and, if he feels so strongly, he can move a substantive motion. But he is not going to misuse question time. I'm moving to the next question.