Thursday, 1 August 2019
(1) That the Senate—
(a) notes with deep concern allegations that current members of Parliament, including ministers, pressured senior officers in the Department of Home Affairs to make it easier for certain people, including high-roller clients of Crown Resorts, to obtain visas and clear customs; and
(b) requires the Minister representing the Prime Minister Senator Cormann to attend the Senate immediately after motions to take note of answers on 1 August 2019, to make a statement of not more than 10 minutes detailing:
(i) whether the Prime Minister has investigated the claims made against ministers regarding Crown, which prima facie would breach the Ministerial Standards,
(ii) if the Prime Minister has not investigated these allegations, why he has not done so,
(iii) if the investigation is ongoing, what are the Terms of Reference and timelines for the investigation, and when will the findings be released, and
(iv) whether or not the Prime Minister considers that the Ministerial Standards have been breached.
(2) That at the conclusion of the Minister's explanation, any senator may, without notice, move a motion to take note of the Minister's explanation.
(3) That any motion under paragraph (2) may be debated for no longer than 1 hour, and have precedence over all business until determined, and senators may speak to the motion for not more than 10 minutes.
by leave—I move:
No. 1—Omit subparagraph (1)(a).
No. 2—In subparagraph (b)(i), omit “prima facie would”, substitute “could”.
I apologise for the fact that we haven't circulated these amendments, due to the shortness of time this morning. The amendments I would move would delete paragraph (1)(a) from the motion, and there would be a further amendment to delete, in part (b)(i), the words 'prima facie would' and replace them with 'could'. The heart of these amendments is to take out some of the commentary around this. They would simply require the Minister representing the Prime Minister to attend the Senate and make a statement of no more than 10 minutes detailing those subsections, but without prejudging or making commentary about that. It would be a straight statement, and we would then be happy to support this motion.
Question agreed to.