House debates

Monday, 28 February 2011

Gillard Government

Suspension of Standing and Sessional Orders

2:48 pm

Photo of Tony AbbottTony Abbott (Warringah, Liberal Party, Leader of the Opposition) Share this | Hansard source

I move:

That so much of the standing and sessional orders be suspended as would prevent the Member for Warringah moving immediately the following censure motion:That this House censures the Prime Minister for breaching faith with the Australian people and introducing a carbon tax because she is now beholden to the Greens and in particular:

for stating on 16 August, five days before the election, that “there will be no carbon tax under the Government I lead”;
for stating on 20 August, one day before the election, that “I rule out a carbon tax”;
for declaring that a necessary pre-condition to any carbon tax was the support of the Australian people in her statement on 24 June, that “I also believe that if we are to have a price on carbon and do all the things necessary for our economy and our society to adjust we need a deep and lasting community consensus about that. We don’t have it now; and
demand that the Prime Minister first seek a mandate from the people before introducing her carbon tax which is set to destroy jobs, damage our economy and hurt families at a time when there is no global low emissions agreement

Today we had the Prime Minister driving a Holden off the assembly line. Good on her for driving a Holden off the assembly line, but why didn’t she tell people that running that Holden is going to cost at least 6½c a litre more every time the tank is filled, as a result of her policies? She talks about living in the past and here she is in a self-conscious echo of good old Ben Chifley, driving the first Holden off the assembly line. I did not think there was too much similarity between this Prime Minister and good old Ben Chifley, because to start off with, Ben Chifley would never have gone to the Australian people telling them a barefaced lie about his policy.

But there is this similarity between this Prime Minister and Ben Chifley: Ben Chifley loved petrol rationing and this Prime Minister loves the carbon tax. Ben Chifley wanted to stop people driving their cars and this Prime Minister wants it to be more expensive for people to drive their cars. Petrol rationing and bank nationalisation cost Ben Chifley an election and the carbon tax and the mining tax and all the other taxes that this Prime Minister wants to impose will cost her the next election. Let us remember the words of the Prime Minister that will haunt her every day of her political life:

There will be no carbon tax under the government I lead.

Just what was the Prime Minister thinking when she said that? Was it idealism? Was it principle? Was it the need to be an altruistic reformer? Was it the need to be on the right side of history? No, it was political desperation. It was political panic which led her to tell a barefaced lie, to put a barefaced lie to the Australian people.


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