Thursday, 25 November 2010
Telecommunications Legislation Amendment (Competition and Consumer Safeguards) Bill 2010
I will speak very briefly. Since I gave Senator Macdonald a hard time for wasting the time of the chamber, I will speak very briefly in response. If Senator Macdonald or, indeed, any other coalition senator had asked me genuine questions about these amendments and what they contribute to the bill, I would have been very happy to take them on, but the opposition has engaged in six or seven hours of questions—or pointless, rhetorical flourishes disguised as questions—which could more properly be submitted to the minister, I suppose, because they go to the overall objects of the legislation and the matters that we are dealing with writ large. If the opposition were keen to ask about matters arising from either this amendment or others—I have about six pages to move during the course of this debate—I would happily, as would others, sit here all night to take those questions, but Senator Macdonald had no intention of engaging on the merits or otherwise of these amendments and that is why I left the chamber when I did.
I commend these amendments to the Senate. I find it a bit puzzling that the opposition and a number of coalition senators congratulated me on how wonderful these amendments are before telling me that they would not be supporting them—