Senate debates

Tuesday, 30 November 2021


Consideration of Legislation

12:31 pm

Photo of Jacqui LambieJacqui Lambie (Tasmania, Jacqui Lambie Network) Share this | Hansard source

The Jacqui Lambie Network will be supporting this and will continue to support an ICAC that's got some teeth. I want to tell you what the reality is—through the chair—Senator Stoker. The reality is this: the Australian people right now believe that we're politically corrupt up here—we don't have to answer to them, we don't have to show documents and we don't have to hold people responsible for their actions is what they believe. What that is doing is actually putting the rest of us in that shame basket, and I do not want to be a part of that. That is the reality of what is going on on the ground with the Australian people. That is their thought process right now. There is no trust.

I can tell you after two years, or 2½ years or however long we've waited, to them all you're doing is covering up because you do not want this thing to happen. What they're telling me is that we can get away with blue murder in this chamber, in both houses, and we can walk around grander than the rest of the country. That's what they're telling me, that we are untouchable. That is not the Australia I know and that is not good leadership.

I can tell you: I will be supporting this. I look forward very much to you putting your own ICAC up, the one that will leave the puppy dog sitting in the kennel because it's got no teeth and is still in its gummy stage. That's what we're expecting. That's what we will get because you'll be trying to rush it through to say, 'Hey, look at this. We promised it, and everybody else knocked it back.' We already know how the election cycle works, but I don't think people in Australia are actually going to believe you. I think your credibility is about washed in this area. It's gone down the gurgler. That's where we stand in here.

For the sake of transparency, for the sake of trust and honesty and to gain that back from the Australian people, I will support it whether it's a Greens bill or a Helen Haines bill. I don't care whose bill it is, as long as it has teeth. I'm not just talking about teeth of a dog; I'm talking about the teeth of Jaws. That's what I want to see. If politicians end up at these ICACs that have got full powers, then so be it. If you have nothing to hide, you will show up. That's what you will do. You will show up and answer questions, and keep your credibility intact. That's what it gives you the opportunity to do. So no more excuses, because these are just lame excuses, and the Australian people can see this. It's not good enough. Today I will be supporting Senator Patrick's motion.


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