Senate debates

Monday, 10 September 2012

Bills

Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Amendment (Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development) Bill 2012; In Committee

1:17 pm

Photo of Ian MacdonaldIan Macdonald (Queensland, Liberal Party, Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Northern and Remote Australia) Share this | Hansard source

I enter into this debate to try to get some serious answers. The second reading speech people spoke far and wide across a range of issues, but in the committee stage I am trying to get some answers. If Senator Conroy has nothing to do but sit here and trade political insults then I am quite happy to do that all day and all night if needs be.

But I asked a serious question. Just responding to Senator Conroy: if you want to know, and clearly you did not hear my second reading speech, the previous Labor government went to an election some time ago promising to create X number of jobs: a completely baseless promise—a bit like the promise that there will be no carbon tax under a government I lead. It was a promise made by a leader of the Labor Party, which she had no intention of meeting—notwithstanding her trying to rewrite history last night in a very soft interview with what I mistakenly called the ALP but I corrected myself to say the ABC. It is hard to tell the difference at times. Ms Bligh was trying to rewrite history, but the mere fact of the matter was that she promised she would create thousands of new jobs and had no intention of doing it. She had no money to do it; she had bankrupted the state. The only new jobs she created were make-work jobs for public servants in the back room and no frontline services. Fortuitously, as a Queensland taxpayer, I am pleased that my government is now getting rid of those public servants who were not actually making a contribution to the job. Leaks in the paper suggest that more and more workers at the frontline will be engaged after the budget is brought down this week in my state of Queensland.

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