Tuesday 11 August 2020
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Australian PM - 1 month ago

Election of the Speaker

Mr Morrison: (Cook—Prime Minister and Minister for the Public Service) (11:25): Thank you, Mr Speaker, and can I be the first to congratulate you on your election, again, as Speaker. In doing so, I m sure you would agree to pass on my congratulations to all members of this House, particularly those first elected to this chamber, which is a great privilege and an enormous responsibility. I know for all of you, all of your family and friends and those who have supported you this is a very special moment. And for those who have been given the great honour and opportunity to be re-elected to this place as members of this great House, I equally congratulate you and your family and friends and others who have gathered here today to share this very important day with you. But to you, Mr Speaker: you have many great loves and passions in this life, none greater than Pam and the boys, who I know once again will be deeply proud of their dad today. You have great passions, as we ve heard, for the Carlton Football Club, your Holden panel van and many other things which we have discussed on so many occasions as great friends. But one of your great passions is this House—this chamber—and the role that it plays in our great country. You bring a real honour to this institution. This is the second time that you have been elected unchallenged to this position following an election. I think that says much about the respect with which you are held by all members of this House. You understand its responsibility, you understand that we all come here, particularly on a day like today, expressing great hopes and noble intentions, but these are things that you have always lived—as a man, as a member of your community, in your family, as a friend and as a member of this House—and that is what best commends you to this role, more than any of each of us here. You have a wise and calming presence in this place. The normal passions and the heat of the debate that occurs in this place you accept and you celebrate, but at the same time you temper us in those times when, of course, there is overreach. In this role, Mr Speaker, you also do something which I think is truly great, and that is you honour and work so well with those who serve us in this chamber, and you lead them incredibly well. In congratulating you again on your elevation to Speaker today, I think you d join me in also thanking all those who serve us in this House: the Serjeant-at-Arms, the clerks—and you ll forgive me by paying a particular thank you to the Clerk, David Elder, given what the Speaker advised us before the el he wouldn t want us to indulge that moment too much, I know, but he enjoys the deep respect and gratitude of this House for his service—the attendants, the librarians, the cleaners, the drivers and all the support staff that make up the team that serve us here in this place. You lead that team, Mr Speaker, in your own inimitable way. Those who work for the parliament watch over this institution. They don t just serve us, the members, but more importantly they serve the Australian people. As we come together here for this first time in this place, we all know that our focus should be not on the people who are inside this building but, indeed, to serve those who are outside this building who will always remain our focus. We thank you again, in advance, for your work in shepherding this 46th Parliament as its Speaker. Mr Speaker, I look forward, and the government looks forward, to working with you as we have always done in the past. God bless, and I wish you all the best in your endeavours and responsibilities.

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