Senate debates

Wednesday, 5 March 2014


Assistant Minister for Health; Censure

2:52 pm

Photo of Eric AbetzEric Abetz (Tasmania, Liberal Party, Minister for Employment) Share this | Hansard source

The Labor Party have spun their wheels on this issue in question time, day after day, without traction. They did so hour after hour in Senate estimates as well and got absolutely nowhere. The reason: there is no substance to the case. Sure, they called in Senator Faulkner. Sure, they called in Senator Wong. But I know that when I used to be a counsel—and I am sure Senator Brandis would be able to recollect this as well: no matter how good a counsel you are, if you ain't got a case, you ain't going to win. That is the problem with the prosecution by Senators Wong and Faulkner of this case. There simply is no substance. All the rhetoric in the world simply will not build the case for you—and there is no substance whatsoever.

The Labor Party had a choice. They might have moved to suspend standing orders to fight for Qantas jobs. No. What about manufacturing jobs? No. What about the plight of the drought afflicted farmers in this country? No; they are into the smear as soon as they can get there. Considering the seriousness of this, you would nearly think that somebody had misused their credit card—which reminds me that the Labor Party are bringing this issue of integrity before the Senate when their former national president is languishing in remand awaiting sentencing for gross dishonesty. Mr Thomson, their former member, has been found guilty by a court of law of ripping off low-paid workers. And what is the allegation against Senator Nash in all those circumstances?

Honourable senators interjecting—


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