Debates Day 2 - Tuesday 22 November 2011
Parliamentary Record 23
Debates for 11th Assembly 2008 - 2012; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 11th Assembly 2008 - 2012
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
DEBATES Tuesday 22 November 2011 Mr TOLLNER: Of course, Madam Speaker. I am talking of your colleagues in the Labor Party, but things have to go through you, Madam Speaker, and I apologise. Madam Speaker, the Chief Ministers motion is about playing funny, little political games, somehow or other trying to embarrass the Country Liberals Members interjecting. Mr TOLLNER: Of course we are going to support it. As I say, as a Territory legislator, I want unfettered power, wearing the hat of an Australian Madam SPEAKER: Member for Fong Lim, direct your comments through the Chair, please. Mr TOLLNER: I can see there are problems with this legislation passed in the federal parliament. If we had a gung ho government in the Northern Territory which stood up for Territorians, we would be playing merry hell in Canberra with this legislation. I remember reading stories of the Everingham government and the wars he fought with Canberra. There was a bloke who stood up for the Territory, who was not scared to get out there and have a go irrespective of the political stripe of the people occupying the government benches in Canberra. Not this mob, not this mob! Whatever Julia says, whatever Kevin says, whatever any of them say, these guys are ready to jump. Look at the live cattle export ban, a classic example. Rather than the Chief Minister screaming blue murder and going to Canberra and kicking a few of his Labor colleagues heads, he says: No, it was a good circuit breaker. He supported that fool, Joe Ludwig, who the parliament asked to be dismissed - asked to be removed from office. It is absolutely pathetic. These people have the audacity to say, somehow or other, they support Territorians. What a pathetic joke. They say they support statehood; they do not give a rats about statehood, it is a political football for them. It is something to be used in the political fight to get re-elected, which is what they are doing right now with this whole process. Rather than say: All right, let it cool off until after the Territory election when we will not have any distractions or disturbances, no, they want to run it across a general election. They do not give a stuff about the logistical problems Madam SPEAKER: Member for Fong Lim, can you rephrase, please? The language you are using is a little excitable. Could you please withdraw that and rephrase. Thank you. Mr TOLLNER: I am sorry, Madam Speaker. Stuff, was it? Madam SPEAKER: Member for Fong Lim, I am not going to repeat unparliamentary language. Mr TOLLNER: All right. They could not give two cents. Madam SPEAKER: Thank you very much, member for Fong Lim. Mr TOLLNER: I apologise, Madam Speaker. Sometimes I get a bit worked up and my language can be colourful. However, I am pretty passionate about this issue. I have long been a supporter of statehood. I believe Territorians deserve the right to focus on statehood and take into account those issues important for statehood. It should not be a distraction from a Territory election, and a Territory election should not be a distraction from statehood. It is wrong on both counts. People should be able to look, objectively, at the issues of statehood. So, why in goodness name would you decide to run a statehood referendum, or a statehood convention election, when you are running a general election? There is only one reason for it, and we all know what it is. This government is scared silly people will focus on it come a general election and it will get its just desserts. That is why it is scared and doing everything in its power to distract Territorians; to move them away from the issues that matter with their representatives in the Territory Legislative Assembly and push on them a statehood debate right at the time when we are running a general election. This is completely wrong. At the same time, it is running advertisements on the television, radio and in the newspaper. We have not even passed the legislation. We have not even been allowed to have a briefing with the Electoral Commission. It is wrong! To say because one committee of parliament agrees on something we all have to agree on it - what a load of nonsense. It is codswallop. You have to bring things into this Chamber and have them debated. No way, not with this government. They are the ultimate political spin doctors, political animals, and will do whatever is in their power to distract people from their own failings, and that is all they are using statehood for. Meanwhile, we have this pathetic Minister for Statehood rambling on about how she hates the intervention. We did not hear her talking to Jenny Macklin, Julia Gillard or Kevin Rudd about how much she hates the intervention. It is only now, after the Chief Minister says: The word intervention will never come into our language again; we will never do that again. How pathetic! 1848
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