Senate debates

Thursday, 10 December 2020



9:18 pm

Photo of Bridget McKenzieBridget McKenzie (Victoria, National Party) Share this | Hansard source

Wow! I believe in Christmas, but thank you very much. I'd like to associate the Nationals with all of the wonderful words that have been said tonight.

For regional Australia, 2020 has been a tough one. We started it with the drought—it's broken in a lot of places, which has been fantastic, and we've seen bumper seasons—then bushfires, floods and, obviously, COVID. If you're in a border town, you couldn't—as Senator Keneally had to experience—be with loved ones at very difficult times. You're separated. I know there are so many of us around this chamber and around our nation who are very thankful that premiers have finally opened the borders and that they can actually catch up with their very dear family and loved ones in this particular period.

Thanks to our government for actually making the tough decisions and steering our nation as best as possible to protect lives and livelihoods. I think, relative to the rest of the world, we can be very confident that the right decisions were made.

Thank you to the opposition for supporting our government in many of those very, very difficult programs that have supported broader Australia.

Thank you to our frontline workers with respect to COVID. It's scary sending your loved one onto the front line, and we just want to say thank you to them. Thank you to all the staff of Parliament House. You keep it ticking. It hasn't been an easy year. To the CFA and the RFSs, thank you.

Simon, thank you very much for your leadership of the government in the Senate, and I look forward to working with you very closely on behalf of our two parties within a strong coalition in 2021. Vale, Mathias, the legend, but he's been with us much—

Senator Wong interjecting—

No—well, he's left. Okay, Penny, he's left the building.

Senator Wong interjecting—

No, I'm not saying—okay. It's alright. It's late.

I want to say thank you to the fantastic National Party Senate team. We have rocked. We've done very, very well on behalf of our communities and the people who sent us here this year, and I'm really looking forward to you all getting a good rest and recuperation and coming back fighting in 2021. Thank you to Paul Murray for letting Matt arrive late to his daily Sky interview today. I just wish everybody in the chamber and all your families a very blessed and sacred Christmas season. Thank you.


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