Mark Parton, Shadow Minister for Gaming and Racing, yesterday (Wednesday) received a decisive ‘smackdown’ from Gordon Ramsay, Attorney-General and Minister for Regulatory Services.
Mr Parton, Liberal MLA for Brindabella, the poor man’s ‘would you like steak knives with that?’ local politician and greyhound enthusiast, shot himself in the foot while attempting to remain in the spotlight yesterday.
Mr Parton moved a motion in the ACT Legislative Assembly condemning the Government over issues relating to greyhound racing, including the sale of ACTTAB, and the ‘hypocrisy’ of the Greens Minister Shane Rattenbury and the Government for ‘continuing to derive revenue from greyhound racing’…
Hang on, doesn’t this bloke support the greyhound industry?
Mr Parton’s motion was successfully amended by the Assembly to replace everything after ‘That this Assembly …’ with a motion including the following:
(3) congratulates the ACT Government for taking strong action to ban greyhound racing in the ACT following:
(a) the revelations of widespread animal cruelty outlined in the McHugh Report; and
(b) the inextricable links between the New South Wales industry and the ACT industry identified in the Durkin Report; and
(4) calls on the Government to continue working to improve the welfare of greyhounds in the ACT through the transition period, including by supporting local animal welfare organisations as necessary.
But in addition to this, Mr Ramsay took the opportunity to undertake a complete ‘smackdown’ of Mr Parton.
Mr Ramsay said in the Assembly, “It’s tough for him (Mr Parton) to argue that the greyhound racing industry in Canberra has an impeccable animal welfare record when dogs continue to be euthanised at the Symonston track as a result of this activity.”
He documented four additional dogs that had been euthanised at the Symonston track since 28 January:
Quadzilla was euthanised at the track for an offside tarsal fracture.
Antique Kerry was euthanised at the track for a number of leg fractures.
Hilda’s Rose euthanised at the track for fractures.
Kenny’s Shadow euthanised at the track for fractures.
“The routine putting down of otherwise healthy animals which have been injured while providing entertainment for a handful of people is not, to quote Mr Parton and the interests he lobbies for, beyond all reason, a ‘perfect animal welfare record’,” Mr Ramsay said.
Mr Ramsay then went on to restate his comments about doping practices in the greyhound racing industry.
“I have pointed out before in this place that the four-time and most recent winner of Canberra Greyhound Racing Cup has been disqualified from racing three times since 2005 over the discovery of prohibited substances in her greyhounds, including cocaine,” Mr Ramsay said.
He also said that the same trainer was also one of 178 trainers who had been charged by Greyhound Racing NSW with ‘the alleged unauthorised export of dogs to Macau, where healthy Australian dogs are kept in appalling conditions and use for barbaric entertainment’.
Oh dear, that didn’t quite go as Mr Parton had planned.
The ACT Government’s ban on greyhound racing comes into effect on 30 April 2018.
Are you sick to death of hearing about opposition to the ‘greyhound racing ban’ or do you believe there is a place for greyhound racing in the ACT?