Wednesday, 25 October 2017
Questions without Notice
Australian Federal Police
My question is to the Prime Minister. Yesterday it was revealed that the Federal Police did not have the resources to fully investigate a 1.6 tonne cocaine importation. When the Federal Police already don't have enough resources to do the important work they do, why is this born-to-rule Prime Minister diverting the limited resources of the Federal Police so that he can attack his political opponents?
The standing orders are very clear about insults and epithets inside the questions, and, while we are quite tolerant of the opposition's questions, I think the Deputy Leader of the Opposition's epithet flung at the Prime Minister should be withdrawn and not included in future questions.
If the reference that the Leader of the House is complaining about had been at the start of the question, in terms of who the question was directed to, then, certainly, that would be out of order, as is often the case when questions are asked by government backbenchers. But words like 'elitist' or 'snobbish' have often been included. 'Born-to-rule' is of the same order as 'arrogant' and a series of words that have always been allowed, and, probably, are pretty appropriate
Government members interjecting—
The Minister for Health and members on my right are not assisting. As I said yesterday—and I won't make as long a ruling as I did yesterday—I spend a lot of time reading the practice. Whilst I don't like the term and I don't approve of those sorts of descriptors in questions, I couldn't sit here and say they haven't been allowed for many, many years. I will allow the question.
I thank the honourable member for her question and I accept the rather snide barb in her question. Let me say this to the honourable member: throughout my life, my wife and I have started one business after another. We've created jobs; we've invested. We know what creates enterprise and jobs, and we know that families like Nick and Louise, who get on with investment, create jobs.
There are all of those hereditary union princelings opposite, all of those people blessed with the largesse of the union movement, regardless of the contributions they get from union members—giving them away and paying them away—
Mr Hill interjecting—
for their own political causes—giving them to political organisations that want to put their members out of work. But on this side of the House, we know what enterprise and jobs are about. We know it's investment. Every one of our policies—every one!—is focused on creating more investment and more employment. That's why we are resolute in our determination to deliver lower electricity prices. Affordable power and reliable power: that's our commitment. And we're already reducing the burden of tax on thousands of small and medium businesses.
Opposition members interjecting—
The members on the other side can mock and scoff as much as they like, but not everybody has a privileged ride to power through a union job.
Opposition members interjecting—
No, they don't. No, they don't! The reality is hard work, enterprise and investment. That's what delivers the jobs. That's what has delivered 371,000 jobs over the last year. And so I say to those who have done so well from the union movement and who have ridden on the backs of the workers into parliament: think a little about how the jobs those workers have were created—not by you, but by hardworking business men and women like Nick and Louise!