It’s the first day of Senate estimates hearings for the year, with politics nerds already getting a treat with the stoush between Parliament House cafe Aussies and the Department of Parliamentary Services getting the week off to a great start. But even though we’re starting a new round of hearings, questions taken on notice from last time are not all tied up. Figures complied by Labor Senator Penny Wong’s office show which department has the most outstanding questions left unanswered — it’s the Attorney General’s Department, with 16 unanswered questions from hearings held in May 2016 and 29 from hearings held in October 2016. Other departments with outstanding questions from October are Health, Human Services, Prime Minister and Cabinet, and Defence — but none have as many as AG’s. Out of 79 questions left unanswered, 45 are from the one department: Attorney-General’s. We hope George Brandis doesn’t bring a book of poetry this week.

Peter Fray

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