REMARKS TO OPPOSITION PARTY ROOM
TUESDAY, 2 DECEMBER 2014
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Before we start, I want to take this opportunity to say Happy Birthday to Tanya Plibersek.
Now, as we all appreciate, this is the final caucus meeting for 2014.
Well, you may feel somewhat tired: imagine how Tony Abbott's feeling.
It's Tony Abbott's year of broken promises and if Tony Abbott thinks that a 45-minute group therapy session with the press gallery was a John Howard moment he's kidding himself.
Tony Abbott is no John Howard.
Yesterday for all of the 45 minutes we saw one partial stumbling admission, confession of a broken promise on the ABC cuts as if Australia needed to be told he'd broken that promise. But that was it.
I have never seen someone who finds it so difficult to admit that they're wrong.
And there is a point where strength just becomes stubbornness, where refusal to accept the facts is just downright arrogant.
We see no apologies, no contrition, and most importantly no substantive change in this Government's directions.
The Government, the Liberal National Party Coalition, they're always constantly talking about changing their tactics but they never change their mind.
If they can't wreak their unfairness one way, they're just trying to dream up another way but Australians always know that at the end of the day this is a government who is addicted to unfairness.
The Government is adrift, the budget is sinking fast.
It is not, despite what Tony Abbott was saying, barnacles.
It's the actual ship. It's the crew, it's the captain.
Tony Abbott says it's about atmospherics, you know that weightless, invisible gas.
It's not just about the atmospherics, it's about the unfairness.
It's simple, if this Government wanted to reboot, recast, press the delete button, try and convince people that they never made the promises before the election and broken them, there are six little things they could do.
No GP tax, no $100,000 university degrees, no petrol tax, no cuts to schools and hospitals, no cuts to pensions and no attack on family payments.
This Budget is the centrepiece of this Government's unfair attack on the living standards of ordinary Australians.
We end the year with this Government still determined to attack the living standards of ordinary Australians.
The Government is saying why are people still talking about the Budget?
It's because it's a terrible Budget.
Now, the people in this Caucus can hold their head up high.
We have had a strong year in the Parliament and in the community because we've been standing up for people, we've been standing up for families and Australians against the Government.
2014 has been defined by the force of Labor's resistance.
In the course of 2015 it will be defined by the power of Labor's vision and its positive plans for the future of this country.
Now it's not just our Deputy Leader's birthday, there's a couple of anniversaries.
Today is the anniversary of two history-making Labor wins.
Gough Whitlam in 1972 on this day, Wayne Goss in 1989 in Queensland on this day.
That should be our inspiration as we close this year and we start next year.
The boldness of our ideas, the size of our plans, the ambition we have for Australia.
We will be more than what this Government is not.
We will have a positive plan, we will have a vision for a smart, fair and inclusive Australia.
We will explain these ideas, our ideas through the length and breadth of the nation next year.
This is what the whole Labor team is.
Personally I want to thank you for your unity of purpose.
As this Government shows more disunity our Opposition is showing more unity.
And next year we will not only endure, we will prevail.
Thank you very much.
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