From the Crikey grapevine, the latest tips and rumours …

Selfies in the red room? The Parliament House press gallery has been notified of new rules regarding their coverage of our representatives. The most notable change is that the photography rules in the House of Representatives and the Senate are now the same. Previously photographers in the Senate were limited to only taking photos of whichever senator “had the call” — meaning, “is currently speaking”. It also includes a change to the rules in relation to Parliament’s basement. Gallery president Andrew Meares wrote to members “following the AFP raid in the basement the Rules now make clear that ‘media related activity’ is prohibited in all basement areas”. At the time of the AFP raid in August, journalists and photographers were ordered to leave a section of the basement but filming of AFP personnel leaving that area was allowed.

Dress for the job you want … Yesterday marked an important day in Parliament’s history, with a speech by Liberal MP Luke Howarth marking the first time rapper Tupac has been entered in Hansard. In relating an anecdote about a young job seeker in his electorate, Howarth also flipped the bird at the House, but we’re not sure if that is a first. The story goes thus:

“I ran a small business before I came into this place, employing 15 people or so. I had a guy come in awhile back. He turned up and said, ‘Have you got a job for me?’ and he was wearing a Tupac shirt — I do not know whether you know who Tupac is; he is a deceased rapper, and he was on the shirt and holding up his middle finger. I said, ‘There’s nothing going at the moment’, and he was about to walk out the door and I grabbed him, took him out the back and gave him a bit of advice that, if he is looking for work, then wearing a shirt with Tupac with his middle finger up is probably not a good way to turn up.”

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One of Ms Tips’ colleagues has taken umbrage at the spelling of Tupac — she believes it should be “2Pac”.

The George Brandis guessing game. Yesterday we noted that the NSW Society of Labor Lawyers will next week auction off a book inscribed by Attorney-General George Brandis, addressed to former governor-general Sir John Kerr. The note reads “To Sir John Kerr with warmest regards, Thomas Harley, George Brandis” and is dated “4:V:1985”.

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The Labor Lawyers Society wasn’t giving away the name of the book in its email to members, writing that they would have to turn up to the five-year anniversary dinner to find out. Crikey doesn’t need a dinner, just our own reliable sleuths to work it out. We’ve received two suggestions of what the book could be — one is Liberals Face the Future : essays on Australian liberalism which is edited by George Brandis, Tom Harley and Don Markwell, and the other is Australian Liberalism : the continuing vision, edited by Yvonne Thompson, George Brandis and Tom Harley. Ms Tips guesses it is more likely to be Liberals Face the Future, as it was published in 1984. Australian Liberalism: the continuing vision was published in 1986, and the note is from 1985.

*Heard anything that might interest Crikey? Send your tips to [email protected] or use ourguaranteed anonymous form

Peter Fray

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