Senate debates

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Questions without Notice

Building the Education Revolution Program

2:54 pm

Photo of Gavin MarshallGavin Marshall (Victoria, Australian Labor Party) Share this | Hansard source

I thank the minister for his answer. Given the previous government’s neglect of Australia’s rail infrastructure and major roads, which are vital not only to the safety of Australian motorists but also to our nation’s productivity, is the minister able to provide details of any infrastructure projects that are currently under way in these two important areas?


Trent Murray
Posted on 18 Jun 2009 12:48 pm

Isn't infrastructure such as rail & roads the responsibility of the state governments? That being the case, if true, the ALP have been the ones neglecting this "vital" area in many cases, NSW for example.

Now, given my statement/question above is conditionally true, does anyone else find the primary aim of this supplementary question to be duck shoving, and secondly, blind big noting?

Posted on 19 Jun 2009 7:18 pm

Trent - you statement is not entirely accurate. Road and rail infrastructures are sometimes state and sometimes federal responsibility - National highways for example are the responsibility of the Commonwealth Government as are national rail infrastructure, ports and airports.

Your analysis of the question type is accurate however. This question is known as a "Dorothy Dix" and is a question prepared by the Minister's staff for a backbencher to ask so that the minister - who already knows it is coming, can look good by answering fully.

Ben Gray
Posted on 22 Jun 2009 4:29 pm

As per what Grendal was saying, this question is "Dorothy Dix"'r.

I think Open Australia should chart this kind of data.

Imagine that... "Minister XYZ Asks Dorothy Dixers 95% of the time". :)