House debates

Wednesday, 23 November 2022


Appropriation Bill (No. 1) 2022-2023; Consideration in Detail

10:39 am

Photo of Andrew HastieAndrew Hastie (Canning, Liberal Party, Shadow Minister for Defence) Share this | Hansard source

This is an important debate because we are discussing the sacred task of defending this country, which you well know, Deputy Speaker Wilkie, being a former member of the ADF, serving in the Australian Army, and a graduate of the Royal Military College, Duntroon.

We come to this debate on this side of the House wanting only the best for Australia and for the men and women who bear arms in defending it. And we will work constructively with the government. I've said this multiple times. We will work constructively with the government. The time for hyperpartisanship is over because, as we know, the strategic circumstances we face are dire. Authoritarian powers are on the move. Russia and China, now with a supporting act from Iran, are seeking to revise and overturn the rules-based global order that we have benefited from for many years now.

I want to note the partisan tone this side has brought to this debate today, particularly starting with the member for Bruce, a shock trooper of the Labor left with very little expertise in defence matters who was sent here to lecture us about the past. What we've noted today is the abject lack of vision from those opposite. They have been going over the past and giving us a history lesson but shown very little vision for the future. They are well off topic if you ask me. If this is about past records, I want the House to note that the coalition government over the last nine years increased defence spending by 55 per cent in real terms after the low of the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd years, which drove defence spending to the lowest since 1938.

Government members interjec ting—


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