Sen. Joe Bullock (ALP-WA) – Maiden Speech

Senator Joe Bullock was elected at the re-run Senate election in Western Australia on April 5, 2014.

Bullock

The original Senate election of September 7, 2013 was declared void by the High Court after the Australian Electoral Commission lost around 1400 ballot papers during a recount.

Having replaced Senator Louise Pratt in the first position on the ALP ticket, Bullock was the only successful ALP candidate. The ALP also failed to win a second seat in South Australia.

Bullock, 58, an official of the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees Association, was a controversial choice for preselection, especially after the publication of a tape of an address he made to the Dawson Society. [Read more…]


Brian Harradine, Long-Serving Independent Senator Expelled By ALP, Dies, 79

Brian Harradine, an influential independent senator from Tasmania, who was expelled by the ALP in 1975 following a long and bitter dispute in the aftermath of the 1950s Labor Split, has died at the age of 79.

Harradine was elected as an independent senator from Tasmania at the 1975 double dissolution election following the dismissal of the Whitlam Government. He was re-elected five times (1980, 1983, 1987, 1993 and 1999) and served for 30 years. He chose not to contest the 2004 election and left the Senate on June 30, 2005.

At various times, Harradine’s vote was a crucial balance of power factor in the Senate, especially between 1996 and 1999 when he was instrumental in supporting the Wik legislation and voting to privatise Telstra. He voted against the Howard government’s GST legislation in 1999.

A socially conservative Catholic, Harradine was an organiser with the Federated Clerks Union in the 1950s. He was Secretary of the Tasmanian Trades and Labour Council and a member of the Australian Council of Trade Unions executive from 1964 until 1976. He founded the Tasmanian division of the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association in 1967. [Read more…]


Senator Brian Harradine Announces His Retirement; Will Not Contest Election

Senator Brian Harradine has announced that he will not recontest his seat at this year’s election and will leave politics when his term expires on June 30 next year.

Harradine, a controversial figure expelled by the ALP in 1975, has been an independent senator from Tasmania since winning a seat at the 1975, following the dismissal of the Whitlam government.

Statement from Senator Brian Harradine.

Senator Harradine will not recontest seat

I will not be recontesting my Tasmanian Senate seat at the next election. My term is due to end on 30 June 2005. I will leave the Senate as the longest serving senator in the current Parliament and the longest serving independent senator since Federation. [Read more…]


Abbott Announces Medicare Plus Deal With Senate Independents

The Health Minister, Tony Abbott, has secured passage of his MedicarePlus package through the Senate, following a deal with four senators.

The deal with Senators Brian Harradine, Len Harris (One Nation), Shayne Murphy (ex-ALP) and Meg Lees (ex-Democrats) gives the government the 4 additional votes it needs to pass the legislation 39-37.

Amongst other measures, the deal involves a reduction in the level of the annual threshold for concession card holders. It also provides for incentives for bulk-billing doctors in non-metropolian areas and Tasmania. Harradine and Murphy both represent Tasmania. [Read more…]


Longest Currently Serving Members Of Federal Parliament

Longest Currently Serving Members of the Australian Parliament
– as at May 2001
No. Name Division, State Party First Elected Period in Office
1
Ruddock, Hon. Philip Maxwell Berowra, NSW LP 1973 28 years
2
Cadman, Alan Glyndwr Mitchell, NSW LP 1974 27 years
3
Howard, Hon. John Winston Bennelong, NSW LP 1974 27 years
4
Sullivan, Kathryn Jean Martin Moncrieff, Qld LP 1984 (Senator 1974-84) 27 years
5
Harradine, Senator Brian Tas Ind 1975 26 years
7
Jull, Hon. David Francis Fadden, Qld LP 1975, def. 1983, 1984 23 years
8
Watson, Senator John Odin Wentworth Tas LP 1978 23 years
9
McLeay, Hon. Leo Boyce Watson, NSW ALP 1979 22 years
10
Chapman, Senator Hedley Grant Pearson SA LP 1987 (MHR 1975-83) 21 years

 


Meg Lees Responds To Brian Harradine’s Opposition To The GST

These are remarks by Senator Meg Lees, following Senator Brian Harradine’s decision to oppose the GST.

Lees, leader of the Australian Democrats, struck a deal with the Howard government to pass the GST provided it exempted fresh food and education, amongst others.

  • Listen to Lees (5m)

Senator Brian Harradine Opposes the GST

This is an edited version of Senator Brian Harradine’s speech in the Senate announcing his intention to vote against the introduction of a Goods and Services Tax.

  • Listen to Harradine’s speech (11m)
  • Listen to Democrats Leader Senator Meg Lees comment on the future of the GST in the light of Harradine’s opposition. (4m)

Speech by Senator Brian Harradine.

Independent Tasmanian Senator Brian HarradineThis new tax system that has been proposed by the Government, we all agree, is a major revolutionary reform, and for good or bad we will have to live with it for decades to come.

A huge effort has been expended by the Government and by others in developing this new tax system proposal.

The executive Government has put forward this proposal pursuant to what it considers to be a mandate given by the people at the last election in October.

So much has been said about this question of mandate and I’m not going to enter into that argument at this point of time. [Read more…]