PARLIAMENT HOUSE, CANBERRA
TUESDAY, 13 JUNE 2017
SUBJECTS: Finkel review; tensions in the Liberal Party
BILL SHORTEN, LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION: Good evening everybody.
It would appear that chaos is the order of the day for Malcolm Turnbull and his Liberal party room.
Just when Australians thought that the climate change wars were over, it looks like a new civil war in the Liberal Party has taken it up to a new level.
What Australians want is national policy certainty, so we can have lower electricity prices. We need to make sure we have more investment in renewable jobs, lower pollution and downward pressure on electricity prices.
Mr Turnbull’s leadership is weakened by no less than 25 members of his government criticising his plan for a clean energy target. Mr Turnbull has been weakened and Australians are the loser.
He needs to stand up to Tony Abbott. He needs to say no more climate change scepticism.
For goodness sake: Malcolm Turnbull get your government into order because Australians deserve lower electricity prices, more jobs in renewable energy and of course, a real fair dinkum policy on climate change.
JOURNALIST: Mr Shorten, what will you be accepting?
SHORTEN: Labor is prepared to seriously consider the Finkel Report and a clean energy target. We’ve got lots of questions still to go but what we will do is we will be fair dinkum. We are open to being bipartisan and working with the government because Australians deserve to have downward pressure on electricity prices, they deserve to have more renewable energy jobs and we deserve to make sure we’re actually tackling climate change for the future.
Malcolm Turnbull has a test of leadership, clearly when 25 members of his government are speaking up and not even the usual suspects, Malcolm Turnbull has been weakened fundamentally.
And the problem with division in the Liberal government is that climate change doesn’t get tackled, new jobs don’t get created and energy prices continue to go up and up and up.
JOURNALIST: I think one of the concerns was that they wanted to wait for the climate change review, the policy review, is that worth waiting for?
SHORTEN: How long do Mr Turnbull’s climate sceptics need to wait to be told that climate change is a real problem?
How long do we need to wait when you have got the Chief Scientist, business, Labor, environmentalists all saying we have to take real national action on climate change?
If Mr Turnbull can’t run his own party, how on earth can he run the government, how on earth can he run Australia?
The joke is over. The Liberal Party needs to join the 21st century and recognise that climate change is real, we need to take real action.
And the fact that Labor is willing to consider Mr Turnbull’s ideas more seriously than his own political party, speaks volumes for how weak Malcolm Turnbull is.
Thank you everybody.