Senate debates

Thursday, 17 March 2016

Bills

Commonwealth Electoral Amendment Bill 2016; In Committee

9:06 pm

Photo of Stephen ConroyStephen Conroy (Victoria, Australian Labor Party, Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate) Share this | Hansard source

I have been provoked. I forswear them. I was being heavily provoked from all corners of the chamber. Senator Di Natale and the Greens could not get enough preferences, so what did they decide to do? Disenfranchise 3.4 million Australians. That is the only way they can get elected. It is a sorry state of affairs. You ran a couple of times but could not get enough preferences. Steve Fielding got elected before you, for goodness sake. My goodness, Senator Di Natale objected to that.

They are entitled to a position in every state—that is the Greens position. They do not care if 3.4 million Australians get disenfranchised and get nobody representing them in this chamber. As I said earlier, I do not think we would see Senator Muir in a pair of pants like that but, given his current look, anything is possible. But I do not have a problem with probably the most normal Australian in this chamber getting elected—that is, Senator Muir. I said this earlier. He is probably the most normal Australian to be elected, and that is being very unkind the other 75 of us. I do not have a problem that somebody was not aspiring to get elected to the Senate unlike Senator Di Natale, who so desperately clawed and fought and scratched to get here just so he could do the photo shoot of his life. What a pair of pants they were! Other people like the skivvy but I love the pants! Seriously, what a sense of entitlement.

The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN: Senator Conroy, please address your remarks through the chair and also some degree of relevance would be useful for the chamber.

It is entirely relevant. The motivation behind why the Greens have signed up to this piece of legislation, this voting rort is to get their own bums on the seats. I am hoping we are not going to have a repeat of the earlier discussions. This is about 12 Greens bums on red leather. That is all this debate is about. Senator Rhiannon knows that she might not get elected for New South Wales in the next Senate election. She watched what happened to the 2013 Greens candidate who missed out. So she decided she is not going to take that chance. She does not care that she is going to attack those dirty backroom pop-up party preference deals, the ones that she herself has been this centre of. She wrote them up on a whiteboard once to do describe the Greens feeder parties.

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