Thursday, 12 November 2020
Senate Temporary Orders
by leave—A few months ago the Labor and Liberal parties made an agreement that limits how often senators can put up motions. Motions aren't legislation; they're used to express the views of the Senate as well as do things like get documents from government, set up inquiries or introduce bills. Because of this agreement between the two big parties, I'm unable to put up more than one motion per week. I put up a motion on Monday hoping it would be voted on. The major parties blocked me from having it considered, and that counts as my motion for the week. I'm all tapped out.
Yesterday was Remembrance Day. The Labor Party put up a motion having a go at the Liberal Party because it didn't like the way a Liberal senator had been carrying on in an inquiry. The Liberals put up a motion having a go at the Labor Party over the Victorian Premier's handling of COVID. Queensland Labor senators put up a motion congratulating the Queensland Labor government for being terrific. The Greens put up a motion having a go at everyone for not paying attention to what they're saying on climate change. One Nation put up a motion criticising the World Economic Forum for putting out some obscure proposal I'd never heard of. We spent an hour dealing with motions, and I couldn't do anything. Yesterday was 11 November; it was Remembrance Day. Nobody moved a motion to honour that.
Labor used its motions to congratulate itself and have a go at the Liberals. The Liberals used their motions to congratulate themselves and have a go at the Labor Party. The Greens moved the same motion they move every day, and One Nation moved some weird motion nobody outside the darkest corner of Sky News after-dark programming has ever heard about. I can't move anything because the Labor Party and the Liberal Party decided a few months back that crossbenchers like me were taking up too much time in the Senate dealing with motions; therefore, we were put on rations.
I had the mother of Dave Finney in my office yesterday, and I know you know who she is. Julie-Ann Finney was here to make—