House debates

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Matters of Public Importance

Gillard Government

3:56 pm

Photo of Ms Julie BishopMs Julie Bishop (Curtin, Liberal Party, Deputy Leader of the Opposition) Share this | Hansard source

Madam Deputy Speaker, I take this opportunity to congratulate you on your elevation to this position.

Not since the dying days of the discredited Whitlam government have we seen such a pitiful excuse for a government, with a leader who cannot be trusted, whether she is backstabbing her leader to take the top job of Prime Minister, having promised faithfully that she would never challenge him, or whether she is backstabbing the Australian people. This government is contemptible. A Prime Minister who promised the Australian people on the eve of the election that there would be no carbon tax under a government she led then did a secret deal with the Greens and broke her promise to the Australian people. She broke faith with the Australian people. It was a solemn promise that she was prepared to walk away from. When it comes to the choice of keeping faith with the Australian people or clinging to power, this Prime Minister will ditch the Australian people every time. This is a contemptible government led by an untrustworthy Prime Minister. No wonder the joke going around the Twittersphere is: if Australia is the lucky country, how come it is Greece and Italy that get to change Prime Minister?

A survey was undertaken by JWS Research asking Australians to name the best government in Australia over the last 30 years. Ninety six per cent of those people surveyed named any government other than the Gillard government. Four per cent named the Gillard government. I was thinking about that four per cent, but then I read another survey that said four per cent of the Australia people still think Elvis is alive. That explains it, doesn't it, Member for Brand? The vast majority of those surveyed named the Howard government as the best government of the last 30 years, and that is because it was and is the best government of the last 30 years. The legacy that this incoming lot received from the Howard government was invaluable. Unemployment was around four per cent and there was no government debt. We paid off every single cent of Keating's $96 billion debt so that we did not have to pay $9 billion or $10 billion a year in interest. We provided successive budget surpluses. I think it was about seven in all, wasn't it, Member for Flinders?


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