Prime Minister Scott Morrison – responding to questions by Bill Shorten on the topic of white supremacy and the Wentworth by-election

photo of Scott Morrison MP
October 17, 2018

On that side of the House, we have the member for Sydney, who thinks that Israel is a rogue state. The member for Sydney has come into this place as a member of this House and called Israel a rogue state… I do know the Australian Jewish community can trust one party in this chamber: the Liberal and National parties.

Full speech

Mr SHORTEN (MaribyrnongLeader of the Opposition) (14:08): My question is to the Prime Minister. Can the Prime Minister confirm that his government on Monday supported a white supremacist slogan in the Senate and on Tuesday upended 70 years of bipartisan foreign policy and that today the former Deputy Prime Minister is doing the numbers to depose the current Deputy Prime Minister? How can the Prime Minister claim that a vote for the Liberals in Wentworth is a vote for stability when he refuses to explain to Australians why Malcolm Turnbull is no longer Prime Minister?

Honourable members interjecting

The SPEAKER: Members on both sides!

Mr MORRISON (CookPrime Minister) (14:09): Mr Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition really does need to grow up. He really does. There are important issues that we are dealing with on a daily basis, like the economy, the drought and the residential-aged-care inquiry. We’re working to ensure that we have a strong economy that can support Medicare, that can provide affordable medicines and that can keep Australians safe.

All the Leader of the Opposition wants to do is drudge around in this building in the bubble of politics. What the Leader of the Opposition is demonstrating to the Australian people is that he is just another politician in a suit. The Australian people have no idea what this Leader of the Opposition believes. They have no idea what he stands for. All they know is that this Leader of the Opposition is about one thing: himself. He cannot put forward a set of beliefs that he can hold from one part of the country to the other. He says one thing in one part of the country to one audience, and then another thing to another part of the country.

What the Australian people can know about me and our government is that our beliefs are clear, our principles are clear, our policies are clear and our results are clear. More than a million jobs have been created under the policies of our government. We’re backing in small business, ensuring record funds for health and for education, backing in Medicare, ensuring we’re listing the PBS drugs. When the Labor Party was running the government, they couldn’t afford to do it because they didn’t know how to manage a strong economy and they didn’t know how to manage a budget. I would suggest the Leader of the Opposition get out of the gutter of the politics and focus on the issues that are of national interest to all Australians.

On the issues of foreign policy, we have no problem with Australians deciding the issues we should be talking about in this country any more than we have any issue with Australians deciding who comes to this country and the circumstances in which they come. On that side of the House, we have the member for Sydney, who thinks that Israel is a rogue state. The member for Sydney has come into this place as a member of this House and called Israel a rogue state. Now, I don’t know if the member for Melbourne Ports agrees with that or if the member for Wills agrees with that. Perhaps members over here do agree with that. I have no idea what the member for Watson and the member for McMahon think about these questions of support for Israel, but I do know the Australian Jewish community can trust one party in this chamber: the Liberal and National parties.

Honourable members interjecting

The SPEAKER: Members on both sides will cease interjecting. The member for Grayndler and the member for Sydney will cease interjecting. The members for Moreton and Bruce interject constantly. They are warned, as is the member for Wills for the same reason.

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