Thursday, 7 December 2017
by leave—This time last year when I rose on this occasion there were some cries of protest that, as I was one of the last speakers of the night, we could be in for another 47-minute Hinch marathon, like my first speech. I assure you that that will not happen and this will be the shortest speech you will get tonight.
I would like to thank other senators on committees and in the chamber for the things they have done with me as a newbie—for the passport travel ban, for the transvaginal mesh report and for passing the changes to the Senate photography rules, which enabled the fantastic pictures of the same-sex marriage euphoria, like Penny Wong cuddling Dean. You wouldn't have got those and they wouldn't have been on the history books. That has now been preserved for history.
I would like to thank Richard Pye, Maureen, the staff, the attendants, the COMCAR drivers and all the other people mentioned by other speakers. Most of all, I thank my staff. They are fantastic staff. When you are a one-senator party it's pretty hard on the staff, especially during estimates when you're trying to get from committee to the committee, as you well know, Senator Griff. I also want to thank three newbies who were not here last year: Zoe Heinrichs, Charles Light and Carly Gibbs from my office.
The way my fellow senators and their staff have negotiated with me has been fantastic. I trust you all with the way you stick to deals et cetera. I extend to my fellow senators yuletide greetings. Have a safe and meaningful Christmas. To our new President, who I think is doing a great job—and I promise you I won't sing it like Bing Crosby—'Mele Kalikimaka.'