Thursday 17 March 2011
Hansard of the Legislative Council

Mr FINCH (Rosevears) - Madam President, I might just say a couple of words and I will be as interested as anybody to hear what I have to say.
Members laughing.
Mr FINCH - I did not realise that today was your valedictory speech here so I was unprepared for the moment. Certainly I have the sentiments of the other members here. I have some observations in respect of my own entry into this place nine years ago. I suppose I come without a strong interest in politics but I was really keen to be a good parliamentarian, so keen to observe the machinations and the workings of what went on here. In a lot of ways I defy people to have an understanding of what goes on here until they actually get in here to see how the place works and ticks.
I was in that favoured seat over there and looked straight across here at - well, as it was the Leader then - to watch the way that part of the process unfolded, as far as the Government was concerned. It was a job that, as a new observer of what went on here, filled me with awe and admiration as to how you could actually work that job, with the things that needed to be part of the chemistry of controlling the situation for the Government, and having that huge, heavy responsibility that the honourable Leader for the Government now has, and just what an all-consuming mindset that would have to be. What I was amazed about was the good humour with which the honourable member went about his business doing the job and controlling that situation for the Government. I thought it was really in very good hands.
As the honourable member for Huon said, once we left the Chamber it was all about good humour, good conviviality, good collegiality, but I also admired the seriousness with which he approached the challenge of the legislation. That will be a memory that I will have with me for the rest of my days. I suppose I have to admire him also for his choice of football team and we might sing the club song before this is out.
Ms Forrest - At the dinner I reckon.
Mr FINCH - It might be a better place at the dinner. I think Madam President would agree with that.
Madam PRESIDENT - Especially when you are singing the wrong song.
Members laughing.
Mr FINCH - Even though I came into this House as an Independent I expected there to be more lobbying of me to help with a position -
Mr Hall - They knew your mind was made up.
Mr FINCH - to help me with an understanding of what was really going on. I was surprised at the lack of that. It was really quite refreshing and it enabled me to slowly come to terms with my job and have an understanding of it and to maintain my independent point of view. The only time that I have ever had a coat tug from the Government was when we were doing the Relationships Bill.
Mr Hall - You might want to reword that.
Members laughing.
Mr FINCH - No, it was the coat from the front; settle down. He came up to me and he said, and this was not by way of statement, but by way of question -
Mr Aird - You're not going to out me, are you?
Mr FINCH - No. He said -
Mr Wilkinson - 'I like you'.
Mr FINCH - He said, 'How are you going with this?' And I said, 'Two out of three ain't bad'. And then he walked away and that was the only time we really had any of that pressure that I thought might come more often. I think you understand, Michael, it is admiration that I have for you. I appreciate the work that you have done, 31 years, for goodness' sake, and it has taken you this long to come to your senses. I, along with the others, wish you well for your future outside of Parliament.