Monday, 10 September 2018
No, I am. I'm delighted to see you, and Happy New Year to you—Rosh Hashana.
You'd expect Labor to come into the House and blow up the parliament with a whole lot of confected outrage about what's been going on the last month, but you've got to admire their chutzpah, particularly the Leader of the Opposition's chutzpah, because lot of those members on the other side of the House come from a government and an opposition—a Labor Party—that changed their leader in five years from Kevin Rudd to Julia Gillard to Kevin Rudd. When they were in opposition they had Kim Beazley, Simon Crean, Kim Beazley again and even tried Mark Latham, who they now completely reject as a member of the Labor Party. Then they went to Kevin Rudd. They were a party that changed their leader very routinely. And I agree with them that changing the leader is not the right thing to do.
The Australian public are quite rightly most disconcerted with what's occurred. I agree that the last 10 years of politics in Australia, the instability that was initiated by the Labor Party from 2007 to 2013, was the wrong way to treat the Australian public. It was the wrong way to behave, and now Labor says they had to do it. But they began the process that has led to this 10 years of instability in Australia after the 11½ years of stability by the Howard government.
We had 11½ years of stability in the Howard government following relative instability in the Hawke and Keating governments, the Fraser government, of course, and the aberration that was the Whitlam government. Before that we had 21 years of continuous power from the coalition. And Labor created this very unfortunate atmosphere in Australian politics in the last 10 years, where changing the leader became de rigueur. It's the wrong thing to have done.
I agree with the Australian public that what they want is stability.
Mr Rob Mitchell interjecting—