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Greens take Speaker role

By Gungahlin Al 6 November 2008 48

[First filed: November 05, 2008 @ 11:01]

ABC is reporting that Shane Rattenbury has been elected Speaker of the Assembly.

“Interesting times” indeed.

[ED – So we’ve now got signs of real compromise from Labor. Also Shane would appear to have been cast out of the sewing circle leaving the ladies free to undertake the politicking.]

UPDATED: The Greens have now got a media release up:

    ““I understand the role of Speaker is a demanding one, and it will be a fairly steep learning curve to start. But I am confident, with my legal training and recent experience in leading the Greenpeace delegation at the vital climate change negotiations in Bali, I will develop the necessary skills quickly.”

    “There has also been a lot of argument between ALP and the Liberal parties about the need to have a ‘government’ or an ‘anti-government’ Speaker. As a member of the third party in this Assembly I am confident I will be able to find a non partisan approach in managing the business in the chamber.”

    “I am also looking forward to building on the work of the past Speaker in looking to give the Assembly a stronger role on in public life.”

    “The ACT Assembly is a small and flexible parliament and it is usual for the Speaker to also contribute to the development of legislation and debate. I intend adding to that record by taking an active role in pursuing key issues, climate change in particular” Mr Rattenbury said.”

But what do we think of a speaker who doesn’t wear a tie?

The Speaker of the Legislative Assembly:

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48 Responses to
Greens take Speaker role
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Gungahlin Al 3:48 pm 06 Nov 08

Aurelius said :

I don’t think Meredith and the girls would be a knitting circle – that would be supportive of the oppressive wool industry!


On ties (as I sit here with my own rubbing at my neck uncomfortably), probably the first day of the Assembly wsn’t the day to buck it. But I probably can’t talk – in Council and at a similar age to Shane, I also often went without a tie, and on days when I rode my cruiser in, even stooped to jeans and boots (shock horror).

Caf: good one! I could just see him doing that. 🙂

housebound 3:47 pm 06 Nov 08

Labor back Dunne? ha ha ha ha ha ha.

That would mean getting off an ALP high horse. That’s sure gonna happen.

As for a party-line vote = valid majority, well, technically true but it really shows party discipline more than any indication of the best person for the job.

caf 2:56 pm 06 Nov 08

It’s silly to say the Greens “forced” this decision on anyone – it was a majority of the LA that backed Rattenbury, if Labor had thought it important enough to have a speaker with MLA experience, they could have backed Dunne.

GregT 2:43 pm 06 Nov 08

I’m sure a man who can talk to the extremist fringe of the Greens on a daily basis and keep a straight face will be more than capable of handling a pouting Chief Minister.

Thumper 2:40 pm 06 Nov 08

Will Shane wilt under the terrifying glare of an angry and bristling Sonic?

GregT 2:36 pm 06 Nov 08

The role of the Speaker is an essential one in protecting and promoting the integrity, standards and professionalism of the Legislative Assembly. That’s work that Wayne Berry did an excellent job at and had a genuine commitment to, but it’s also something that the Greens have something genuinely fresh to contribute to. My hope is that Shane takes advantage of the appointment to bring a higher and more mature standard of debate to the Assembly; if he achieves that, it could be more significant in the long run than anything else the Greens have on their agenda.

As to what he wears – that’s really only a subset of his role in promoting and ensuring public respect for our Assembly and if he’s achieving that larger task it really doesn’t matter what he wears while he does it.

jimbocool 2:24 pm 06 Nov 08

As the Speaker is the local dignatory that new Ambassadors visit to present their credentials I think it only fair that Shane frock up for these visits. Otherwise I think going tie-free in the chair is fine – as long as he’s wearing a suit and shirt with french cuffs.

I really don’t think it matters that the Speaker has not been in the Assembly before – for any tricky decisions he will be relying on the advice of the Clerk anyway.

Aurelius 2:17 pm 06 Nov 08

I don’t think Meredith and the girls would be a knitting circle – that would be supportive of the oppressive wool industry!

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