Bill's Transcripts



SUBJECT/S: US Election result

BILL SHORTEN, LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION: [audio cuts in] who do all of the great work in Australia and encourage him to have more women in the positions of senior leadership. Obviously, that's a topic of keen interest both here and elsewhere, the role of women in senior leadership. 

Happy to take any questions. 

JOURNALIST: Do you think this makes Pauline Hanson and One Nation more relevant?  

SHORTEN: It's early days to see what lessons there are for Australia in the election of Donald Trump. I think what it shows though is that where you have a divided society, where you have people left behind the pace of economic change, you will see responses and more extreme political outcomes.  

That is why now, Malcolm Turnbull should take the lesson of Donald Trump and stand up for a strong minimum wage, start looking after blue collar workers who are dislocated and left behind with the closure of car companies and power stations. It's why it is important we have a strong Medicare so that people are able to afford to get the quality healthcare they need and it's not dictated by how much money they have in the bank. For me, that is the lesson of this election. But where you have countries which have rising inequality, you will see more surprising extreme election results. 

JOURNALIST: You may have called some of Trump's policies 'bonkers'. Do you still think that some of his policies are 'bonkers'? 

SHORTEN: I will always call it as I see it. I certainly said that some of his views were extreme and I didn't agree with them but the American people have now spoken. For the relationship between Australia and America, it doesn't depend on particular governments or personalities, I think seven decades shows that we are stronger than that. But I will never resile from standing up for my views. I think people have a right when they listen to their leaders, to know what their leaders actually think. And I do think it is fundamental to leadership, to respect women and not to judge people based by their ethnic or religious backgrounds.  

JOURNALIST: Will you be able to work with him if you win the next election? 

SHORTEN: I am sure that the issues that unite Australia and the United States are greater than particular differences. 

JOURNALIST: Do you think you'll agree on anything with him though? Like Donald Trump you said that Donald Trump is extreme. Is being an extreme anything a good thing? 

SHORTEN: Well, the voters clearly in this case felt that Donald Trump was speaking to their lives in a way in which the status quo wasn't.  

What matters in this country is our values of fairness and making sure that people don't get left behind. The Labor Party has plans and policies to make sure that all Australians share in the benefits of our country. We want to manage the economy in the interest of all Australians not just the vested interest. 

Thanks everybody, see you later.  


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