Browsing articles in "Shadow Ministerial Interview Transcripts"
Dec 4, 2018

Transcript of Doorstop Interview – High Speed Rail – Canberra – Tuesday, 4 December, 2018

E&OE TRANSCRIPT
DOORSTOP
CANBERRA
TUESDAY, 4 DECEMBER, 2018

Subject: High Speed Rail.

ANTHONY ALBANESE: I am very pleased to be joined here by the Member for Indi, Cathy McGowan, and just a little while ago we moved in the House of Representatives a suspension of standing orders that would ensure that the High Speed Rail Authority Bill was voted on and carried by the Parliament today.

This is a Bill whose time has well and truly come. We know that today the Premier of New South Wales is in the newspaper speaking about having some feasibility studies and looking at where routes might be for High Speed RaiI. I say to the Premier of New South Wales she doesn’t have to do that. There has been an extensive study done by the former Labor Government. It was done in two stages. It involved state governments. It involved local government. It involved international expertise and it was widely recognised as being comprehensive. It went down in detail to the actual design of rail stations and what it found was that not only is High Speed Rail viable and an economic benefit to the nation for the routes between Sydney and Melbourne and Sydney and Brisbane, but that it would super charge regional economic growth, which is why I am so pleased that Cathy McGowan has been such a passionate supporter of this project.

Now this project shouldn’t be partisan. That is why I asked Cathy to second today’s motion in the Parliament, to indicate the breadth of support which is there. And of course in the High Speed Rail Authority that we planned to set up, I intended to ask the High Speed Rail Advisory Group that recommended the structure to participate. That included Tim Fischer, the former Deputy Prime Minister and a real rail advocate and enthusiast. It included Jennifer Westacott from the Business Council of Australia, showing how important the economic case was for this project. It included the head of the Australasian Railway Association, the Rail, Tram and Bus Union, representing employees, local government.

It is one thing to talk about the need for High Speed Rail. The other thing though that is critical is actually putting in place the planning, preserving the corridor, getting that done. That is the first step. The real tragedy is that if we don’t do that the cost will be many tens of billions of dollars – not according to myself or Cathy – according to Infrastructure Australia in a report to the Government of just last year.

So we have an opportunity today to get something done. To show the Parliament at its best, doing what the Australian people want us to do – not squabble and fight, but recognise what is in the national interest and move forward in a comprehensive and, indeed, a cohesive way as a Parliament. This is a project that won’t be solved in just one term of Parliament. That’s why I have always looked for bipartisan support and I thank Cathy for seconding the motion and we’ll be pursuing it. The vote will be after Question Time and it’s an opportunity still for the Government to get on board, maybe take attention away from fighting each other for just a minute, vote for this and get something done for the nation.

MCGOWAN: Thank you. So my call to the Government – if not now, when? And to the people of regional Australia, if this Government doesn’t do it, then who is going to have the vision for the regions? When I got elected, I’m always saying I’m putting my electorate first. And we desperately need better infrastructure. And I’m really pleased we’ve been able to do some work on our current train line and get some of the mud holes fixed up.

But what we actually need is a long-term plan and we need to get the authority organised between Melbourne, Albury-Wodonga, Wagga Wagga and Sydney and further north. And I cannot see the argument of why you wouldn’t do it because it’s exactly as Anthony Albanese says: If you don’t do it now, when are you going to do it? And it just becomes so expensive.

So I’m a really pragmatic Member of Parliament and I’m really pleased to be working with Anthony Albanese on this and I really put a call out to the Government to come and join us on this nation-building activity. And the first thing we need to do is get the corridor organised and agreed to. We’ve done all the work, we’ve got all the expertise in and now we just want some bipartisan work to say, yes we’ll put the authority in place and we’ll do the work in a non-political way, which is I think what the people of Australia want and certainly what the people in my electorate want.

ALBANESE: Thanks Cathy, happy to take questions.

JOURNALIST: Cathy, you know the rail line down Albury-Wodonga, that’s just been a debacle it seems, hasn’t it? Is that because it’s owned by three different bodies or how many are responsible for all that?

MCGOWAN: Public transport is an issue in Victoria, but no more so than in my electorate of Indi where we have got a railway line that has had so many problems. It’s owned by the Australian Rail Track Corporation, it’s operated by V-Line and also NSW Railway and I’ve been really successful in my time here of getting $235 million to get the mud holes fixed up. But we’re nowhere near solving the problem of public transport.

So it’s one of the reasons why I’m such a great fan of doing the long-term planning and getting the corridor organised because, assuming that I can continue to do my work and get our train line fixed up, that will only take us back – and my community tell me – to the Ned Kelly days and now we’ve got to move into the 21st century and have something that actually is going to connect us up to the cities.

So there’s no planning for regional transport and I have to say even in Victoria with the last election with the Labor Party how seriously they’ve let down the regions. They’re doing work around Melbourne and out to the airport, but if you put the marginal seats or the very safe National Party or Liberal seats, we’re just completely off the agenda. So that’s why coming to Canberra and to work on a national approach to this is so important for me. But surely we’ve got really big problems in the regions with our current transport and my community keeps saying: ‘Well fix up the slow rail before you do the fast rail’. And I’m saying there’s no reason why we can’t do both – fixing up the slow rail and doing the planning for the fast rail in the future.

ALBANESE: It’s absurd that here we are in Canberra where it takes longer to go from Canberra to Sydney by rail than it did many, many decades ago. It’s quite appalling that that’s the case. But the difference is with High Speed Rail if you put Canberra under an hour from Sydney, Newcastle under an hour from Sydney, Albury-Wodonga under an hour from Melbourne, you change the economics of those regional cities.

We talk about urban congestion and pressure that’s on. We have to get serious about decentralisation. Decentralisation doesn’t mean moving 10 public servants to Armidale. That does nothing. What does drive that economic change and decentralisation is turning what is a tyranny of distance into a comparative advantage and that’s what regional High Speed Rail would do and that’s why this is such a visionary project.

And I must say over the years – Paul Fletcher: “We have seen a number of proposals in recent years for High Speed Rail and the benefits are easy to visualise’’. Michael McCormack, the current Transport Minister: “High Speed Rail could open new opportunities for regional Australia’’. Angus Taylor: “Now more than ever we need to talk about the future of the Hume Corridor and High Speed Rail’’. John Alexander: “Well connected cities and regions mean the opportunities can be distributed across a wider population. High Speed Rail can bring distanced communities within close proximity of each other’.

What I say to those Members is that words are good, but sitting on the right side of the Parliament in the division would be even better and there is an opportunity this afternoon to advance this project. Gladys Berejiklian, the Premier of New South Wales, has made an announcement with no route, with no funding, with no planning. That’s not good enough. The planning has been done. The route has been identified. Let’s get on with preserving the corridor and advancing this project.

JOURNALIST: Is it a bit like the Snowy Hydro Scheme – long-term thinking, but now with short-term governments they don’t think?

ALBANESE: Well there is no doubt that one of the issues that we have to deal with infrastructure in general is breaking the nexus between the short-term political cycle and the long-term infrastructure investment cycle. That is why we created Infrastructure Australia – to get that long-term vision and there is no doubt that a project like this will occur over many terms of government and that is why we are seeking cross-parliamentary support for this.

Members say they support it. Let’s get on now, today, with seeing this as a project which is advanced, not what has happened up to this point. I have had to introduce this Bill five times to the Parliament. We provided funding to the authority in the 2013 Budget. It was abolished by Tony Abbott’s Government. Today we can reverse that and get on with the business of High Speed Rail. Thanks very much.

McGOWAN: Thanks very much.

[ENDS]

TUESDAY, 4 DECEMBER, 2018

Dec 4, 2018

Transcript of Radio Interview – ABC Canberra with Anna Vidot – Tuesday, 4 December, 2018

Subject: High Speed Rail.

ANNA VIDOT: The New South Wales Government says a fast rail network around the state will help transform New South Wales. You looked at this in a much broader perspective in 2011. What’s changed?

ANTHONY ALBANESE: We had a serious look at it, not just a media release. We invested $20 million in the study that looked at international experience, that looked at the route of a High Speed Rail network between Brisbane, through to Melbourne via Sydney and Canberra.

ANNA VIDOT: Surely it would have started with a media release though. Isn’t that what the NSW Government is intending to do?

ALBANESE: Well, they haven’t put any money in.

VIDOT: As yet.

ALBANESE: They’ve got one person in charge who’s an expert. If they looked at the study that had been done, what you need essentially is population and it looked at the economics of High Speed Rail and whether it would work or not – the feasibility of it. With the greatest of respect some of the routes that have been identified, certainly to the west of the state – it certainly would not stack up in terms of the economics of High Speed Rail. Canberra to Sydney does stack up, as it does right through to Melbourne as part of the route. It found that the cost would have to be pretty similar to air travel. It found that for distances essentially of just under 1000 kilometres High Speed Rail was ideal. But one of the things that lifted up the benefit, as opposed to the cost, of the project was the benefit for regional economies along the route. In particular the Southern Highlands, Canberra, Wagga Wagga, Albury-Wodonga and Shepparton, in between Sydney and Melbourne.

VIDOT: So do you think that perhaps the NSW Government could benefit from looking at your past research, or have things changed too much?

ALBANESE: No. The research stacks up. It was looked at again by Infrastructure Australia last year. They found the cost of a failure to preserve the corridor, the entire corridor from Brisbane to Melbourne, could be $22 billion additional cost, unless that was done. I have a High Speed Rail Authority Bill. What I did was, after the study, I had an advisory group that included Tim Fischer, the former leader of the National Party and Deputy Prime Minister and a great rail enthusiast. I had Jennifer Westacott, the head of the Business Council of Australia, just to make the point that this was a hard-headed economic analysis. We had the head of the Rail, Tram and Bus Union, Bob Nanva, the head of the Australasian Railway Association, a representative of local government. And it looked at how this project could be progressed, and what it suggested was that you needed an authority because it crosses jurisdictions both local government – of course many jurisdictions, but particularly the four states and the territory down the east coast. And it needed that to get the planning right and to get on with the preservation of the corridor, as the first step and then what you would do is to go out to market. There’s lots of international experience. The effectiveness and efficiency of High Speed Rail is increasing, at the same time as the costs are coming down. And it’s being rolled out in every continent – inhabited continent – on the planet, except for Australia.

VIDOT: Mr Albanese, when I spoke to Andrew Constance the NSW Transport Minister earlier, he was discussing how initially the idea will be to have faster rail. So improvements and upgrades to the current tracks as they stand. Is that something that we need to start seeing some work on sooner rather than later? You keep talking about a High Speed Rail, but is that something that’s very, very far off into the future?

ALBANESE: Well, that would be welcome. And there are a number of things that could be done to improve the network. In particular if he is talking about down to the South Coast and the Illawarra, the building of Maldon to Dombarton, taking those freight trains away from that track and doing some work just south of the National Park, would make an enormous difference, and that study is being done by the transport department. There are things that we could do. There is work that has been identified between Sydney to Canberra, that would improve the route. But if we’re serious about making rail competitive with air travel and really making a difference, then what we need to look at is to be ambitious. The rest of the world is doing it, there’s no reason why we can’t do it from Sydney to Canberra, for example, would mean that this great national capital would be under an hour from the CBD of Sydney. Now what that does is change the economics of businesses being located here, from one of disadvantage to one of all of a sudden having an advantage, because of the lower establishment and operating costs of businesses here compared with in Sydney. But it also would mean for the people of Canberra, much more attractive, or the people from Sydney for that matter, they could travel up very quickly to events that are in either city. Be it something at the National Museum, or the National Gallery, or the Sydney Opera House. It would change the way that the two cities relate to each other.

VIDOT: My guest here on ABC Radio Canberra Drive is Anthony Albanese, the Federal Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Transport. We’re taking a look at the fast rail network, something that the NSW Government has announced it will look at come the next election or post the next election. A couple of text messages here, Mr Albanese, Ron from Bungendore says: ‘My parents used to talk about the highway to the coast being upgraded to two lanes both ways from Canberra to Batemans Bay. They finally admitted that it would not happen in their lifetime and it has not,’ Ron says: ‘This fast rail will not happen in my lifetime and I hope to be around for the next 40 years.’ I think there’s a lot of sentiment like that. I know that it was talked about when I was in high school, this particular issue.

ALBANESE: I understand why that cynicism is there, and that’s one of the reasons why, when I was the Minister I appointed a committee – that wasn’t a committee for Labor, or a committee for the Coalition – it attempted to get the head of the business community for Australia, in Jennifer Westacott, a former leader of the National Party in Tim Fischer. There were no former Labor MPs on the committee that I established. I wanted to try and create momentum for beyond one term, or beyond any particular party being in office because this is a project that won’t be done in one or two terms. And that’s why today, to bring on the legislation that I have before the Parliament about establishing the authority, now I’ve moved and there’ll be a vote in the Parliament very soon to try and bring on a vote on that deal. And it was seconded by Cathy McGowan the Independent Member for Indi because I’ve tried to reach out. Many people across the Parliament, if you took a conscience vote, if you like, particularly for members on the east coast: ‘Do you support High Speed Rail?’ it would be overwhelmingly carried. And we need to take that sentiment and turn that sentiment and aspiration into a reality, and that takes a structure and that structure is having an authority that will drive this project.

VIDOT: Both the New South Wales Premier, Gladys Berejiklian, and the Transport Minister, Andrew Constance, say this is not an election stunt, that they’re looking ahead to the future and it’s a matter that’s important to people living in the regions as you just said. You’ve spent a lot of time travelling. Is that what you’re hearing from people?

ALBANESE: Oh absolutely. It would make an enormous difference to the regions. Both the route in inland NSW, between Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne, but also up to Newcastle, which would also be under an hour from Sydney. But towns like Taree and Port Macquarie, Lismore and the Gold Coast would be transformed by such a project. One of the things that we’re talking about, those of us who live in the capital cities, is urban congestion. And we need to do something about decentralisation. Decentralisation won’t be driven by moving 15 people from a government department from Sydney to Armidale. How it will be driven is by making the economics of private sector investment and economic activity better in the regions than it is in those capital cities. I think that is the way that you really promote that change and people in the regions get it. My in-laws will be travelling up to Port Macquarie from Sydney at Christmas time, and it’s a dreadful drive, that’s the truth , as much as the highway has been improved, when all the cars are there wanting to head up the coast at the same time. If you could jump on a train and be there in half the time that it takes you to drive, that would be of enormous benefit.

VIDOT: I don’t think anyone disagrees with you on that one. Anthony Albanese. Would you be, is this something that’s going to be back on the agenda if Labor wins government in 2019, dare I say it, after May.

ALBANESE: It certainly will be on the agenda. And the bells that you may be able to hear ringing in the background, are for the Division to get the vote on the High Speed Rail Authority.

VIDOT: Then I will let you go.

[ENDS]

TUESDAY, 4 DECEMBER, 2018

Dec 3, 2018

Transcript of Radio Interview – 2CC, Canberra Live with Richard Perno – Monday, 3 December 2018

Subjects: Federal Election; Craig Kelly; student protest; Fairgrounds Music Festival; Tom Uren Memorial Lecture

RICHARD PERNO: Do you know who Tony Albanese is? Tony Albanese. Have you ever been called Tony?

ANTHONY ALBANESE: No one calls me Tony. My mother used to – when I was a little kid, I still remember my late mum, if anyone called me Tony she’d say: “If I wanted to call him that I would have called him Tony, it’s Anthony”.

PERNO: It’s Anthony. I can imagine you as a little kid, shorts way down to your knees, Bermuda socks up to your knees, they were grey – weren’t they? A little bit of dribbling because you couldn’t control yourself, a nice little shirt on.

ALBANESE: Oh come on, now you’re being mean.

PERNO: A nice little tie. What were you like as a kid, a rat bag or a nice bloke?

ALBANESE: I was a little bit naughty, you won’t be surprised.

PERNO: I won’t be surprised.

ALBANESE: I went okay.

PERNO: It’s all clear. Green lights for Craig Kelly and Co. Anthony Albanese, Member for Grayndler the Shadow Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Tourism. You must be licking your lips just sitting back and watching the Libs implode.

ALBANESE: It is pretty amazing that you’ve had this intervention to save Craig Kelly who frankly has spent his entire time in Parliament really running down his own side and creating internal havoc for them. And someone like Jane Prentice who I think should be a Minister in the Coalition Government, that was knocked off by a bloke who used to work for her. She is on the front bench as a Parliamentary Secretary, no one lifted a finger. Ann Sudmalis sits in a very marginal seat, in Gilmore, not too far from us here in Canberra. No one lifted a finger. They don’t even have a candidate. She’s been knocked off by nobody and sent to New York, to the United Nations General Assembly, where she can’t cause any difficulty. But Craig Kelly gets saved. It’s beyond belief, really. Of course you’ve had Malcolm Turnbull’s extraordinary intervention yesterday and this morning, about that issue and about when the election should be held, next year.

PERNO: Well, there was chatter and then it became confirmed he was on the ABC this morning saying: “Yeah I got to admit, Scott Morrison and I decided on March 2”. They should get to an election as soon as the Christmas break is over. We heard it loud and clear, Anthony.

ALBANESE: Well, I think March 2, would be a good idea not the least of which it would put the Government out of its misery and at least stop them fighting each other.

PERNO: Put the sick dog down, do you reckon?

ALBANESE: Secondly, it’s my birthday. It would mean that I got lots of birthday wishes on that day, as I went around the polling booths and it would give me an extra pitch to voters, to vote for me, given it was my birthday. You would have to be pretty mean to vote against someone on their birthday, I reckon.

PERNO: I know, mate.

ALBANESE: I’m in favour of the 2nd of March.

PERNO: Okay, 2nd of March for Anthony Albanese’s birthday. But quite frankly, Anthony Albanese, it seems that major parties are on the nose, given how many independents we have been voting for in the last couple of elections. Would you agree?

ALBANESE: Well certainly I agree that the major parties need to do much better. But what we’ve been seeing in recent times, is essentially Liberal seats, what should be Liberal seats. Wentworth which has, of course, the most expensive real estate in Australia, along Point Piper and Vaucluse and suburbs like that. You’ve got Mayo, which was held solidly by the Liberal Party forever and you’ve had the electorate of Indi based around Wodonga and Shepparton – all three are now held by independent progressive centrist women. It says something about the Liberal Party – it’s a problem that they had I think in Victoria. If you say to people: ‘Well Malcolm Turnbull wasn’t a real Liberal and anyone with those sort of views anyone who thinks we should act on climate change isn’t a real Liberal,’. then what you’re saying isn’t just to the people you’re fighting with in the party room. The problem is saying to people who voted Liberal their whole life that you’re not one of us.

PERNO: Anthony, is Cathy McGowan not going to run?

ALBANESE: I think she’s running.

PERNO: We got wind of it last week that maybe there was a bit of a doubt there, somewhere.

ALBANESE: She looks pretty keen around the corridor. That’s new to me. She was talking to me just a little bit earlier about High Speed Rail and the need to progress it. She’s keen on it going through her electorate between Canberra and Melbourne.

PERNO: High Speed Rail. I’m not going to get you on that, because that’ll get you off the tracks. Did you see that? The kids were revolting last week and going on strike. What did you think about that?

ALBANESE: I think that if young people have a concern about the state of the world that – after all they’re going to be around for longer than you and I – then I think that is a good thing.

PERNO: Didn’t we all protest when we were at school against the – Vietnam – you know, there was all of that protest going. But did you hear the Prime Minister? He was asked about that too, Anthony Albanese, what did you think about that? He said: ‘I reckon the kid should be in school learning not protesting’. He’s not connecting, is he? He’s out of touch.

ALBANESE: Well what school is about? It’s about learning from textbooks, but it’s also about learning about life. And one of my first demonstrations was in 1975. So I would have been, just turned 12 years old, when the Whitlam Government was replaced. So it happened that with the coup of November 11, it just so happened that I went to St. Mary’s Cathedral, which is the back of the cathedral in the city, and the big demo was at the Domain. And certainly myself and a whole lot of classmates went across to that very historic event. And when we got back to school no one got into trouble. It was seen as – you know we didn’t have permission – but we saw that as being more important. And the few hours I missed out on school there, I learnt a lot more than I would have sitting at a desk.

PERNO: I just think that Scott Morrison was saying the kids should be in school learning and not outside protesting. I know where you were on Saturday. I know where you were Anthony Albanese.

(Music Plays)

PERNO: Anthony Albanese was seen in Berry. Attending the Fairgrounds Music Festival, appearing in conversation with the British musician this fellow, author and political activist Billy Bragg. That’s where you were, wasn’t it?

ALBANESE: It was great fun. It was a really interesting discussion. The organisers were a bit shocked by the many hundreds of people who tried to turn up that couldn’t fit in because people were really engaged. And we had a discussion for an hour – talked about everything from his music, to Brexit and what was happening with the European Union, what was happening in the state of the world and it was a good discussion. I’ve known Billy, showing my age here, I met him when I was President of Young Labor. I organised for him to come and do a talk on his first tour of Australia That was back in 1987. So when I thought about that, it was a bit of a shock that we’ve known each other for 31 years. But it was something a bit different. Many of these musical festivals are fantastic for employment and the regional economies, of course. Canberra has a fantastic Folk Festival. And they create jobs and economic activity and it was good that it was just the day after Tony Burke released our contemporary music policy in Sydney. So people were interested in that, as I went around the festival as well. And most of these festivals have a talk component and this was a real family event, the Fairgrounds Festival. They had over one thousand kids registered aged under 12, and it was a good thing to see families out there enjoying the weekend.

PERNO: Anthony Albanese, Berry is a good example of a little town that thought it was going to die because of the highway not going through it. They reinvented themselves and it’s a true big artisan town now, it’s a great little town.

ALBANESE: Oh it is a fantastic town and a friend of mine Rick Gainford owns one of the Bed and Breakfasts there, and it’s certainly going gangbusters. It was certainly very full on the weekend.

PERNO: Full in more ways than one. And yesterday you also hosted the annual Tom Uren Lecture?

ALBANESE: That was very good. I did that in my electorate, drove back to Sydney Saturday night and I hosted Gareth Evans, of course, the Chancellor of your great Australian National University, here in Canberra. And Gareth talked about Australia punching at our weight in international affairs. He was introduced by Senator Penny Wong – so we had the former Foreign Minister and the person I hope is the next Foreign Minister, in Penny. We had over 500 people there, and it shows that people are interested in the state of the world and that they are prepared to come along on what was a very warm Sunday afternoon to hear Gareth.

PERNO: Cheryl Kernot wasn’t in the audience, was she?

ALBANESE: I think I’ll let that one go through the keeper. Gareth Evans has enormous respect. And he is one of – not just Australia’s great statespeople, but internationally he is very highly regarded for the work that he did with Cambodia, the work that he did on nuclear disarmament, the work that he did in lifting Australia’s profile in the region.

PERNO: All right. Seriously, Anthony Albanese, would you take on a Federal election, March 2, on your birthday? Is the Labor Party ready?

ALBANESE: We’re ready. We’re more than ready. We’ve got an enormous amount of policy out. I think more than any Opposition has in – certainly in living memory and we’re ready to contest. And I think it’s pretty clear that the Government isn’t able to govern – just normal functions of government aren’t happening at the moment. And the fact that they themselves have essentially moved Parliament to part-time – when we get up this Thursday, if the election is held in May, it will mean that there are just ten sitting days in eight months. That’s just us not doing our job, frankly. And it’s bad for the Canberra economy as well.

PERNO: That’s it, too. All the pubs and the cafes go dry. Anthony Albanese Member for Grayndler, the Shadow Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Tourism – this thing called a fast train, that one day I might talk to you about. Enjoy the rest of your week, and we’ll catch up before Christmas. Thank you, Anthony.

ALBANESE: Thanks very much, Richard.

 

 

Nov 30, 2018

Transcript of Television Interview – Nine Network Today Show – Friday, 30 November 2018

Subjects: Liberal chaos, Parliamentary sitting calendar, female representation, International Reggae Day.

KARL STEFANOVIC: Welcome to the show. It’s good to have your company. The Liberal Party has plunged deeper into chaos this week following the resignation of MP Julia Banks, sending the Morrison Government further into a minority and bracing for more defections. For more I’m joined by Anthony Albanese and Christopher Pyne from Adelaide. Morning guys, how are you?

CHRISTOPHER PYNE: Good morning. It’s nice to be with you.

ANTHONY ALBANESE: Good morning.

STEFANOVIC: Christopher do you ever feel like you’re pushing (bleep) up a hill?

PYNE: Look politics is an exciting business Karl and I’ve been doing it for a quarter of a century, as has Anthony, and I’ve been in politics when we’ve been in much worse positions than this. In 2001 we were 58-42 in the polls and we were written off and eight months later we won the election and let’s not forget next year in April we’re going to release a surplus Budget – the first surplus Budget since the Howard-Costello era.

STEFANOVIC: It doesn’t really matter, it’s all white noise. They’re not going to vote for you.

PYNE: Look I don’t agree with that at all. I mean we’ve got six months to go before the election. Anybody who decides the election is over – I know Labor has – Labor is absolutely overconfident. But let’s not forget John Hewson was going to be the Prime Minister of Australia, Karl. The media and the political commentariat had completely written the Keating Government off and they won in March 1993. So it’s a lot to go between now and the next election.

STEFANOVIC: Well him not knowing the price of bread with the GST probably had something to do it – or a cake or whatever it was. Listen just in terms of what you’re  promising ahead of this election you’re also talking, I think in the Adelaide Advertiser today, about possible tax cuts. Is that what you’re going to do? And what bracket will they be? And when will they come into play?

PYNE: Well we would welcome a contest with Labor over tax because Labor has a $200 billion wrecking ball of taxes they want to put through the economy – really hurting older people, pensioners and retirees, renters, homeowners, people who want to invest in the property market. They’re going to reduce house prices and of course tax us more. So we’ll welcome a contest with Labor on tax.

STEFANOVIC: No but when are you going to introduce your tax cuts for the working class?

PYNE: Well we did that in this year’s Budget. We’ve done it in previous Budgets. We’re always open to more tax reform because we believe in giving people back their own money whereas Labor regards it as the Government’s money.

STEFANOVIC: Albo, your response?

ALBANESE: Well the Government’s getting increasingly hysterical as they get more and more desperate. What we saw this week was they lost the Member for Wentworth as a Government Member on Monday. They lost the Member for Chisholm as a Government Member on Tuesday. They’re going to lose the Member for Hughes – Craig Kelly’s going to go to the Crossbenches as well. This is a Government that has decided it is so bad they’re not going to allow Parliament to sit next year and it will sit – from next Thursday Parliament will sit for a grand total of 10 days in eight months.

PYNE: That’s a lie actually. That’s a complete lie.

ALBANESE: It’s absolutely true.

PYNE: The schedule between now and June next year –

ALBANESE: And he knows it. And he interrupts –

PYNE: We have nine sitting weeks, actually 10 sitting weeks because of next week as well. So that’s an absolute bald faced lie.

ALBANESE: You know Christopher’s in trouble when he interrupts. He got the first three questions and he interrupts when he’s desperate.

PYNE: Don’t tell lies.

STEFANOVIC: So if it’s not 10, it’s 15 or 16? That’s still not a lot.

PYNE: It’s 10 sitting weeks between now and June next year.

ALBANESE: The election will be in May.

STEFANOVIC: Anyway.

ALBANESE: The election’s in May –

PYNE: You want us to cancel the election?

ALBANESE: It will be called in April.

PYNE: Do you want us to the cancel the election?

ALBANESE: No you’ll be cancelling Parliament.

PYNE: Is that what you want to do? I don’t think so.

ALBANESE: The more he yells, the more he’s in trouble.

STEFANOVIC: Yeah.

PYNE: You’re not telling the truth Anthony. As much as I love you, you’re not telling the truth.

STEFANOVIC: Bit of love in the morning. Albo, for you, your party looks like it’s going to win this next election but there are still serious issues with Bill Shorten. He hasn’t got a pulse in terms of ratings?

ALBANESE: Well the fact is we’re ahead and today we’re putting –

STEFANOVIC: How does he not measure up against Scott Morrison?

ALBANESE: Well what we’re doing is putting out policies each and every day. And today we have a contemporary music policy. It’ll make a huge difference – making a real difference to people who want to go to musical or sporting events, stopping the bots getting onto sites and taking up to 30 per cent of tickets, putting a limit on new ticket sales or resales of 110 per cent of a sale price. They’re the sort of policies that will make a real difference. We are a Government in waiting, preparing for government. They’re acting like an Opposition in exile sitting on the Government benches.

STEFANOVIC: Christopher, one thing that came up this week again, reared its head again is: ‘I am woman hear me roar, in numbers too little to ignore’. When are you going to have equal representation in Parliament?

PYNE: Well we’re preselecting a lot more women across Australia. We have women leading –

STEFANOVIC: When will you have equal representation?

PYNE: Well Karl, can I actually answer the question or are you just going to interrupt?

STEFANOVIC: Well if you answer it and don’t waffle on.

PYNE: Well I’m not waffling on actually, I’m answering your question. We have women leading the Senate ticket in Western Australia, in South Australia, in New South Wales. We preselected a new woman for the Senate ticket in Queensland, two in Tasmania on the Senate ticket, two women in the Northern Territory seats – both of them are winnable. We’re preselecting women all across Australia in winnable seats. We ironically preselected a woman in Chisholm to replace Julia Banks. So we are setting about, on merit, choosing women for the next election and women’s representation will spike after the election when those women get elected in the Senate and across the country.

STEFANOVIC: Why don’t you just save us all a lot of heartache and let Julie Bishop run the show?

PYNE: Well we have a Leader, Karl –

ALBANESE: Because she might be successful. She’s popular.

PYNE: It’s Scott Morrison and we’re not changing the Leader again.

STEFANOVIC: Are you sure?

PYNE: I am.

ALBANESE: One of things we woke up to this week, isn’t that they’re worried about Parliament sitting because of what we do, they’re worried about  Parliament sitting because their party room at the same time.

PYNE: Labor’s very cocky.

ALBANESE: Every time the party room meets it’s chaos and dysfunction.

PYNE: Labor already has the election in their grasp apparently.

STEFANOVIC: On a much lighter note Christopher, I promised to ask this in light of the fact that it’s I think, International Reggae Day today. What is your favourite reggae song? I mean you don’t come across as a Rasta to me, but what is your favourite reggae song, Christopher Pyne?

PYNE: Well I like all kinds of music actually, Karl, and I do like reggae. I like Buffalo Soldier and I like I Shot the Sheriff.

STEFANOVIC: But did you shoot the Deputy?

(laughter)

PYNE: Boom boom.

ALBANESE: They did. They did in fact. That’s why Julie Bishop’s on the back bench.

PYNE: Boom boom Karl. Boom tish.

STEFANOVIC: Just loosen the shoulders up a little bit. Thank you guys. Have a great weekend.

PYNE: Thank you.

ALBANESE: Good to be with you.

[ENDS]

FRIDAY, 30 NOVEMBER, 2018

Nov 28, 2018

Transcript of Radio Interview – 5AA Two Tribes – Wednesday, 28 November, 2018

Subjects: Sydney weather; minority Government; Parliamentary Sitting Calendar 2019.

HOST: Chris Pyne and Anthony Albanese join us. Hopefully, Albo, your electorate hasn’t entirely washed away this morning. Good morning to you both.

CHRISTOPHER PYNE: Good Morning.

ANTHONY ALBANESE: Good Morning. I actually have to get to Sydney to give the eulogy at a funeral of the late Ann Symonds. And it does not look good at this stage and I may well be driving.

HOST: Yeah. And drive carefully on your way up there, Albo. We’ll kick off with you, Chris. Yesterday not really a great day for the Government was it?

PYNE: Well and if you think that continuing to be a minority is a bad day for the Government, well, we’ve been a minority since Malcolm Turnbull left as Prime Minister.

HOST: Yeah, but, sort of a bit more of a minority now though.

PYNE: Look, we need two votes from the crossbench to pass anything in the House of Representatives and yesterday we won every vote. Anthony and I have been through this before, in the 43rd Parliament Labor lost 76 votes in those three years. I’m sure that we will probably lose votes. The point is, will the Government continue? Yes, through to the next election at least and hopefully beyond because we’re delivering on the fundamentals for Australia. A strong economy, growing number of jobs, low interest rates, low inflation, almost full employment. And I think that we will get the support from the people to continue to do that rather than the big-taxing agenda of Bill Shorten, who wants to change everything.

HOST: How do you focus on that economic narrative? Because you have got, on the economic fundamentals, you’ve got a story there to work with, you’ve got a good story to tell. The problem is every time Scott Morrison stands up it’s like there’s an explosion going off in the background.

PYNE: Well look that’s right. Yesterday we announced that next year’s Budget will be in surplus. Which is a great achievement, it’s ahead of schedule. The last time Labor delivered a surplus was 1989. But we will deliver a surplus next year reminiscent of the Howard Government, unlike the Rudd-Gillard period. This morning in The Advertiser there’s another great story about how the Hunter Class Frigates are adding billions of dollars to the South Australian economy and thousands of jobs. So we’re getting on with it, I’m getting on with it in defence. That’s good for our state and good for the country. The actual business of government is going very well. The problem is the politics that gets in the way and that’s why we need to be focused on the public, focused on the people – what they want – as opposed to this inside the bubble obsession that we have here in Canberra sometimes.

HOST: Yeah. Anthony Albanese the numbers for the Government are more precarious on the floor of the Parliament, but are you going to allow them to get through to the election date that was set yesterday, or broadly pointed to yesterday? Or is your plan on your side of politics now, to try and wreck the joint, effectively?

ALBANESE: They’re doing a great job of wrecking the joint themselves, at the moment. For Christopher to say, that essentially it’s all going well, defies belief. The fact is that this is a Government that isn’t in control. And yesterday when Christopher tabled the sitting pattern for the Parliament next year, which we’ll see when Parliament gets up next week, on December 6, for the next eight months right through to August there will be ten sitting days of the National Parliament and only seven sitting days of the Senate. That’s it, over the next eight months. Having once abolished, of course, or got rid of a week’s sitting because it was all too hard because the banking Royal Commission was going to be carried they then, of course, when they had the coup against Malcolm Turnbull, shut-down the Parliament in the middle of the day.

HOST: Are you going to attempt to bring on an early election, or are you going to see it out until May?

ALBANESE: Well we’ll wait and see what happens on the floor of the Parliament. What’s clear is that the Government themselves are saying they’re incapable of governing. They don’t have an agenda. And if they had any self-respect they would put themselves and importantly the Australian people out of their misery and call an election.

PYNE: Well apart from the fact that Anthony’s math is all wrong as usual, the truth is the Budget has been brought forward a month to April 2nd. It’s usually in May. But obviously the election will probably be in May. So therefore the Budget has been brought forward a month, a surplus Budget, showing that we’re getting on with the job. And that means the extra couple of weeks we would normally have, we’re not going to have because of the Budget being brought forward a month …

ALBANESE: Christopher has had a good go …

PYNE: This is one of those classic cases. I’m happy for you to have a go, I thought it was my turn. I’d hate to talk over you, goodness gracious.

ALBANESE: Well, when you stop. The fact is that – I’ve done the sitting timetable on six occasions and what you do is you look for when Australia Day is, and Parliament comes back the week after Australia Day. That’s the normal process. The Parliament also sits in March. There is either five or six sitting weeks in the schedule prior to April, and there is no reason why you can’t have five or six sitting weeks prior to the April Budget. The only reason why there is not, is because they are running from democracy.

HOST: And the Budget has been brought forward.

PYNE: And the Budget has been brought forward a month. So it’s actually a completely different sitting schedule. There are 17 sitting weeks next year, which is the average, is the norm and everyone knows that – 17 sitting weeks next year.

ALBANESE: There’s ten days until August.

PYNE: Your maths is completely wrong.

HOST: Thank you, guys.

[ENDS]

WEDNESDAY, 28 NOVEMBER, 2018

 

Nov 27, 2018

Transcript of Radio Interview – Triple M – Australia By Night with Stephen Cenatiempo – Tuesday, 27 November, 2018

E&OE TRANSCRIPT
RADIO INTERVIEW
TRIPLE M – AUSTRALIA BY NIGHT WITH STEPHEN CENATIEMPO
TUESDAY, 27 NOVEMBER, 2018

Subjects: Social media; bipartisanship.
STEPHEN CENATIEMPO: I picked up an article in The Australian today and I read it and I thought: ‘Yep this is what I’ve been saying for years’. And it was written by a bloke that – look I’ve had some knock-down, drag-out battles with him on-air during my career and we probably don’t agree on anything ideologically, but I think he’s 100 per cent right on this. He’s the Opposition Infrastructure Spokesperson, Anthony Albanese. Albo, good to speak to you mate.
ANTHONY ALBANESE: Good to be with you. I’m glad there’s something you agree with me on.
CENATIEMPO: Well you and I have we’ve had some pretty robust discussions on-air. But you always speak common sense and that’s the one thing I’ve admired about you and I think you’ve hit the nail on the head with this opinion piece in The Australian today, about the echo chamber that social media has become.
ALBANESE: Well that’s right and I guess in part me talking to you now is a part of what I’m saying through this article – that you have to talk to a broad audience. You need to talk to people who just don’t agree with you. You need to be prepared to engage in the debate and if you’re confident about your views, you shouldn’t fear that. But one of the things social media does, is that people follow people that they agree with. And that therefore reinforces their opinions, and this can be either on the Left or the Right, and that creates a polarisation of views that I don’t think is particularly healthy.

It also creates a tendency away from understanding that compromise is important in politics, as in life. And a lack of respect sometimes for people of different views and – even the fact that the article was published today in The Australian and I tweeted it out, I put it on my social media and people responded, some people responded to that by saying: ‘How dare you write an opinion piece in The Australian, it’s an echo chamber itself’. Which, I guess, just reinforces what the article was saying.
CENATIEMPO: Albo, you’ve been around a long time and I was just looking at your – eight elections now you’ve held the seat of Grayndler – it makes me feel old to think that I ran at the same election you were elected in all those years ago. But there seems to have been this view, I mean, and you’ve been around long enough to remember politics before social media. Are politicians responding to this echo chamber too much these days?
ALBANESE: I think they can and if you look at – even the comments of Julia Banks today with her resignation from the Liberal Party – I think that there is a danger that politicians will respond to people, essentially, who have similar views to them and that will be reinforced and that they won’t engage because they will continue to have a view that everyone thinks in a particular way. This was a part of my piece today, arose from the John Button Lecture that I gave in Melbourne during the election campaign just a couple of weeks ago. And one of the points that I made in that, was to say that the phrase: ‘Everyone thinks that … ‘, is more and more common now than when I was elected 20 years ago. People will say to me verbally, but particularly on social media: ‘Well, everyone thinks …’, in a particular way, whether it be about migration or about transport issues or about the environment. And the truth is that there are very few issues where everyone has one opinion. I mean, I wish everybody was a South Sydney supporter, but the fact is they’re not. And you need to be prepared to respect that. Engage in dialogue. There’s too much shouting I think at the moment and people wanting answers that are just essentially in – Twitter now is 280 characters – but you can’t for example have a sophisticated policy on climate change in 280 characters.
CENATIEMPO: Well that’s an interesting point. But I guess the extension of this is, how do we reach across the aisle these days? You know, I mean I remember the days in Parliament where you’d go and have a beer with your opposite number on the other side after you’d had a debate in Parliament. That seems to be disappearing a bit, too. And it’s permeating the entire population now. How do we close the gap?
ALBANESE: Well, I think we’ve got to talk about it. And that’s what my opinion piece today is about. But we’ve also got a responsibility to just act. I try to engage in different forums. I talk to people like Andrew Bolt and others. I was the only minister who went on Andrew Bolt’s program during the period of the Labor Government, when he was on commercial TV. And I felt that was talking to his audience. Now I might not agree with Andrew Bolt on a whole range of issues, but I found the interviews respectful and that was a good thing. I think the opinion pages of The Australian actually reflect a very broad range of opinion, and that’s a good thing. And the idea that people say – obviously it’s a newspaper with a conservative bent – but it’s not exclusively so, particularly not when it comes to opinion. And the idea that we should shy away from engagement in that because I’m a progressive member of the Labor Party is in my view very counterproductive.

One of the things that I do is appear on a few programs with Christopher Pyne, including the Today Show, every Friday morning. Now, some people say to me: ‘How can you appear with Christopher Pyne?” Well I think it’s a good thing. We try to not yell at each other. We try to, it’s early breakfast TV, we try not to be too partisan in our comments where that’s possible, while sticking up, obviously, for our own side of politics. Christopher I think gets the same feedback. People say: ‘Why are you talking with someone from the other side of politics and it seems like you like each other. How can that be?’ To people for whom that might be their only political thing they listen to or watch in an entire week, who enjoy the fact that we’re respectful of each other and that we do like each other, we get on. That’s a good thing.
CENATIEMPO: Albo, in almost a decade a decade of broadcasting whenever I’ve picked up the phone to you, you’ve always picked up, you’ve always been available, you know, unless you had something else on, of course. But what I find is more and more politicians are reluctant to come on a program like this. I mean we’re broadcasting to 35 radio stations across regional Australia. Talking to real people tonight. Are politicians afraid of that feedback these days? Why is it that less and less of your colleagues will, I guess, come on a program like this these days and answer questions?
ALBANESE: Well I think that for many of them it is more comfortable to go on programs where they know they’ll get agreements, where they’re more comfortable. And I’m someone who goes on a whole range of radio programs, you know, across the ABC, SBS, but also commercial radio. I think it’s an opportunity to put my point of view about issues and I’ve never been frightened of saying what my views are. And one of the things that I say in the article today is, if you have faith in your ideals and policies there’s nothing to fear from debating them, particularly with those who disagree. And when you think about it, if you’re trying to win majority support for your political positions then talking to people and convincing them of your position is one way in which you can do that. The truth is that I hope that we’re always open to discussion and to changing my mind. I’ve certainly changed my view about issues over the years and I would hope that that’s the case based upon when facts change, you have to change your view of the world. And in part one of the ways that we do that is by conversing with people and I enjoy conversations that I have with people, whether it’s in the supermarket or whether it’s on radio. And radio is a particularly effective form, I think, in which to have mature conversations as long as people are respectful, then I’m prepared to talk to them.
CENATIEMPO: Well said. It’s a very old-school outlook, Albo. But I think a lot of people could learn from it. Always good to speak to you.
ALBANESE: Thanks very much for having me on the program.

[ENDS]

TUESDAY, 27 NOVEMBER, 2018

Nov 27, 2018

Transcript of Doorstop – Canberra – Tuesday, 27 November 2018

Subjects: Victorian Election; Scott Morrison; Kelly O’Dwyer; Victorian infrastructure.

ANTHONY ALBANESE: Good Morning. Yesterday saw one of the worst performances from a Government in Question Time that I’ve seen in my two decades in this place. You have a Prime Minister who tried to argue that the Victorian outcome was one that actually reflected in a positive way on the Government. But of course, we know at the same time Kelly O’Dwyer was belling the cat on what Australians increasingly think of the modern Liberal Party. A modern Liberal Party that is out of touch with women, a modern Liberal Party that is out of touch with people who care about social justice, a modern Liberal Party that is dominated by the hard right and where everyone else has to fall into line.

We’ve seen also today Julie Bishop back the National Energy Guarantee, now that’s not surprising given that it went through the party room not once, but twice, while Malcolm Turnbull was the Prime Minister. And this is a Government that doesn’t have an energy policy. And then we saw the gross discourtesy of the Prime Minister and other ministers yesterday walking out straight after Question Time even though Dr Kerryn Phelps was giving her first speech to the Parliament, having won a by-election with an enormous swing away from the Government. Showing contempt for the voters of Wentworth as well as showing, quite frankly, just a lack of manners – just bad manners, when they walked out of the Parliament.

What we’ll see today, I’m sure, is more of the same. Because this is a Government that can’t explain why Scott Morrison is the Prime Minister of Australia rather than Malcolm Turnbull. If they can’t even explain that to the Australian people it’s no wonder that they’re being looked at the way they are, somewhat concerningly, by the Australian public. Scott Morrison does still have an opportunity, a window, to have an election this year. And given the state of his Government perhaps I’d suggest that’s the best option for him.

REPORTER: Do you think the Victorian Liberals are homophobic and misogynists?

ALBANESE: Kelly O’Dwyer, it is, who has said that is the perception of the Victorian Liberal Party and indeed, I think, she was reflecting on the Liberal Party as a whole. And that is from a senior Cabinet Minister in the Morrison Government. So if that’s the character assessment being made – I notice there’s a video going around of Michael Kroger’s assessment of Daniel Andrews’ Government that I think is a pretty accurate one, full of praise, and I also noticed that yesterday Scott Morrison in Question Time, praised the Andrews Government on infrastructure. That’s in spite of the fact that the Coalition Government, of which he was the Treasurer at the time, in the last financial year, delivered 7.7 per cent of the national infrastructure budget to Victoria. Even though Victoria is home to one-in-four Australians, Melbourne is Australia’s fastest growing city. So what we have is that the Andrews Government have been delivering on infrastructure, in spite of the failure of the Federal Coalition Government to give them appropriate support. They’ve politicised infrastructure investment in Australia. But Daniel Andrews and his government have got on with it, in spite of the fact that the Coalition Government have attempted to punish Victorians for having the temerity to vote Labor. Now perhaps it’s now time, for the Coalition Government to stop trying to punish the Andrews Government and to actually get on board and fund infrastructure in Victoria. Thanks very much.

 

Nov 25, 2018

Transcript of Television Interview – ABC National Wrap – Sunday, 25 November 2018

Subjects: Victorian State Election; Liberal Party; Greens Political Party;  national security.

PATRICIA KARVELAS: Anthony Albanese, welcome to National Wrap.

ANTHONY ALBANESE: Thanks for having me on the program.

KARVELAS: What lessons can Labor take from the result on Victoria?

ALBANESE: Well what it shows is that if you do the policy work, which we are doing as well, if you put forward a comprehensive program on education, on health, on transport, on issues that matter to people and then, importantly, if you have privilege of being in government, if you fulfil those promises, you will be rewarded. And that is what has happened with Daniel Andrews yesterday. He has led a government that has been a good government. It’s been a government that has made a positive difference to people’s lives and it’s one that has continued to make positive promises and have a vision for Victoria.

KARVELAS: A lot has been spoken of the Federal implications of which many people say there are many. Do you really think this is partly about the rolling of Malcolm Turnbull?

ALBANESE: I think there is no doubt that the ongoing chaos that is the Liberal Party nationally, including in Victoria, where people like Michael Sukkar and Greg Hunt played a key role in the rolling of an elected Prime Minister, an elected Prime Minister who had won 58 Newspolls in a row as preferred prime minister, had an impact. And we saw it again yesterday. While the Victorian election was taking place in New South Wales they were meeting to roll Jim Molan from the Senate and to have once again an ongoing brawl over who would stand both at the next Federal election and at the New South Wales election next March.

This is a Liberal Party that is split down the middle, that is incapable of functioning, that is incapable of putting forward a policy framework and that therefore retreats back into fear campaigns, negative campaigns. We saw some of that with Matthew Guy, but he was ably assisted in his fear campaign by people like Peter Dutton warning that you couldn’t go out to a restaurant at night in Melbourne, by people at senior levels of the Federal Coalition joining in on the fear campaign aimed at the Victorian State election. And guess what? It failed dismally and Victorians rejected the negative fear-based approach of the Coalition.

KARVELAS: Tony Burke put out a tweet where he said there was no such thing as dog whistling any more. Do you agree with that sentiment?

ALBANESE: Well I think it is more shouting and one of the things about the Federal Government is that they have behaved like an Opposition in exile since they were elected really, back in 2013. None of them seem to have had a plan to actually govern. They have had a plan to fight each other, but not a plan for the nation and we see that writ large with the fact that there is no energy policy at the national level and we see it in terms of their preparedness to engage in the culture wars in a way in which they actually think that people such as some of the late night commentators on Sky News are correct in saying that the reason why Daniel Andrews was re-elected yesterday with such a thumping majority is because Matthew Guy wasn’t Right wing enough.

I mean, I don’t know who these people talk to. It would appear that they just sit in front of people like The Outsiders program and others on Sky News and believe that that is representative of Middle Australia and quite clearly, it’s not. Middle Australia actually is pretty comfortable with Australia’s diversity and Middle Australia wants nothing more, nothing less than a quality education for their kids. They want better hospitals. They want to deal with urban congestion. But they can spot people trying to go the low road from a mile away and that’s really what has happened in Victoria. It’s been a campaign without any substance from the Coalition and they have been punished accordingly.

KARVELAS: I’ve heard some Liberal MPs, some because I can tell you there are strong views to the contrary on this one, that say what we have seen happen in Victoria is essentially Melbourne is a Lefty town and we shouldn’t take any lessons from it. Is it true? Is Victoria a kind of progressive oasis?

ALBANESE: Well I don’t know how they define what happened in Wentworth, where Kerryn Phelps will be sworn in as the member tomorrow, how they define what happened in Longman in Queensland, what happened in Braddon in Tasmania, what happened in Mayo in South Australia and what happened in Fremantle in Western Australia. I mean, we have seen elections right around the country where essentially people have been rejecting the divisive and negative approach of the Coalition, rejecting the approach that tries to pit one group of Australians against another. They are rejecting the approach that says that everything bad is connected with the trade union movement.

They have rejected essentially a Liberal Party that has moved further and further to the Right and it is the case that if you move further and further to the Right, then people who are moderates, who previously have supported the Liberal Party, when they hear senior members of the Federal or Victorian or New South Wales Liberal parties saying that Malcolm Turnbull isn’t really a Liberal, that he went into the Liberal Party as some form of closet Socialist and took it over and that it’s good that he is gone, then I think what that says to those voters, those moderates, the people who have small l liberal views, who support tolerance and support multiculturalism, but who also tend to support a dry economic market-based position for the economy and for government intervention, they are essentially saying to that cohort: “You are not a part of what makes up the modern Liberal Party’’. And Robert Menzies of course, when he formed the Liberal Party as a Victorian, made a conscious decision to call it the Liberal Party, not the conservative party because he had a view that Australians were essentially progressive people.

KARVELAS: Let’s talk about the Greens, because you have often been challenged by the Greens – that’s an issue in your own seat. The Greens look to have lost one of its lower house seats Northcote and potentially a few of its Upper House MPs as well. I think they have probably still held on to Melbourne though. What does it say about the Greens, because they obviously had a bad campaign in Victoria. Do you think this is just isolated to this bad campaign, or do you think that has broader implications for seats like yours at the next Federal poll?

ALBANESE: Well the Greens Political Party have a real structural and cultural problem. They are at war with themselves of course in Victoria, and in New South Wales if anything, it is worse. You have people giving speeches against fellow Greens MPs under parliamentary privilege. You have an ongoing civil war going on and I can’t see how they can possibly have party room meetings in New South Wales and they continue though, to be characterised as well as a political party that targets progressive members. They targeted people like Martin Foley and Richard Wynne, who have made an enormous difference to progressive change as part of the Victorian Labor Government and the difference is that I think people could see that they were, to name just two people, they were making a difference each and every day to support the gay and lesbian community, to support good environmental policy, to support social housing, to support the upgrade of schools and hospitals in their areas and to support a progressive position such as the drug injecting room, which is saving lives, which is located in the electorate of Richmond. And what we have is the Greens essentially targeting those people. And people know that, whereas Richard and Martin and others, myself if we are successful in the Federal election next year, will be sitting around a Cabinet table making decisions.

KARVELAS: Do you feel like you are in a better position now after you have seen this result in Victoria in your own seat?

ALBANESE: I think in my seat what I know is and two people said to me over the weekend who I ran into yesterday on separate occasions, said to me that they had resigned from the Greens because they regarded them as a rabble in New South Wales and that has been the case for some time, the division. But now it is out here in the open for all to see and that is the division which is there in Victoria and it is a division which is there in the Greens caucus here in Canberra and I think that people will reject the essential opportunism of the Greens Political Party. If they are serious about making a difference and promoting real change, then they want someone who is part of the Government, not someone who can wait until a government makes a decision and then decide whether they will protest it or not.

KARVELAS: Anthony Albanese, the Government wants laws to allow police access to encrypted messaging. A bi-partisan committee is looking at that Bill as you know. Will you try and pass this in the next two weeks given that you say that you want to have essentially a bi-partisan approach to national security legislation?

ALBANESE: Well the committee needs to be allowed to do its work and they made a very strong statement from the Chair, a member of the Liberal Party, Andrew Hastie and the Deputy Chair Anthony Byrne just last Friday about this, essentially warning the Government against trying to politicise these issues. National security is something that the Labor Party takes seriously as does almost every Australian.

KARVELAS: Do you feel comfortable with this encryption legislation? What are your personal views?

ALBANESE: Well I will wait and see. I haven’t seen the legislation yet of course.

KARVELAS: But you know what the proposition is. Do you think it is a fair proposition that police get access to encrypted messages?

ALBANESE: I will wait and see the detail and also see what the examination of this committee is.

KARVELAS: But Peter Dutton says there is a sense of urgency given police say so much communication from people who are radicalised are communicating this way.

ALBANESE: Well Peter Dutton, you know, has been out there of course is prepared to play politics from time to time. These issues should be above politics. They should be considered in a sober and serious manner. They should ensure that there aren’t any unintended consequences in terms of, we need to protect Australians but we also need to protect our freedom well, and that is why this committee, on more than I think there have been something life 15 pieces of legislation that have been examined, they have come up with, previously, more than 100 amendments that have all been adopted. Not some of them, all of them and I pay credit to the committee for doing that work and I think the committee should be allowed to do its work. If need be, if something is really urgent, once they have done their processes, Parliament can always be recalled to deal with any urgent matter. But they should be allowed to do their work and these matters shouldn’t be matters of political consideration. There’s only one consideration here, which is the national interest.

KARVELAS: Anthony Albanese, thanks for coming on.

ALBANESE: Thanks for having me on Patricia.

Nov 24, 2018

Transcript of Radio Interview – Joy FM, Sydney – Saturday, 24 November 2018

Subjects; Victorian infrastructure; Victorian State Election; LGBTIQ funding; radio funding; diversity; SSM postal plebiscite; superannuation.

HOST: Now, you know who we’ve got on the phone?

HOST: Who?

HOST: We’ve got Anthony Albanese. G’day Albo, it’s Macca. How are you?

ANTHONY ALBANESE: G’day, I’m very well.

HOST: And it’s Tass here, good morning to you.

ALBANESE: How are you?

HOST: Very well. I last met you at an event in Middle Park, it was, what, six weeks ago?

ALBANESE: At an event for Martin Foley.

HOST: That’s it, that’s it.

ALBANESE: At the Middle Park Bowling Club. I reckon anyone who finds the Middle Park Bowling Club should get a free beer.

HOST: I agree with that, because you’ve got to go down that funny little road through the park.

ALBANESE: That’s right, you’ve got to do this, under the pass. Unless you knew, I think I’d still be searching today.

HOST: Now I hope you’ve been keeping your eye on the election here in Victoria.

ALBANESE: I have. I was down there of course helping out Martin Foley. Last week I was there – I gave the John Button Lecture for Richard Wynne. John Button was a member of the Richmond Branch for many years. And so Richard invited me to give the lecture this year which was a great honour in front of, named on behalf of, a Labor icon, and I have been watching Victoria. Of course it’s a pretty important election. Today it’s all over, you’ll be glad to know I’m sure.

HOST: It certainly is. So we’re very interested in your analysis of the, given your portfolio as the Opposition Minister for Infrastructure, we’re interested in your analysis of the infrastructure components of the two major parties and perhaps  the Greens as well if you’ve got any insights into that. But what are your reflections on their infrastructure commitments?

ALBANESE: Look, I think this really is a critical election. At the moment what we’ve seen from Canberra is this view that what you need is just roads and that’s the way that you deal with urban congestion issues. And I take a very different approach. Of course Daniel Andrews’ Government takes a different approach as well.

They’ve concentrated on removing level crossings, building the Melbourne Metro, which they’ve had to do by themselves because Tony Abbott took out $3 billion commitment that I made as Infrastructure Minister and put in the Budget in 2013. And then we have the commitment to the suburban Rail Loop which both levels of Labor have committed $300 million to. That’s a really exciting project. One of the problems with our big cities is that, whether it’s Melbourne, Sydney or Brisbane, but particularly Melbourne and Sydney, are growing, is that you can’t have a hub and spoke – you can’t have everything going through the CBD day and night. So the suburban rail loop that will connect up 11 or 12 lines including through the airport will just make it so much easier to get around. It’s a bit of a project. It’s long term. It won’t be done in the next term of government, but I think it shows a really stark contrast on infrastructure. What has …

HOST: It’s been described as being quite a visionary project, but I would be slapped at home if I didn’t actually ask you this question. My partner keeps on saying: “Ask Albo, ask Albo when you speak to him today”. But why is it that in Australia it takes, you know, 10 years to build a train line whereas it takes two years to build a highway? Why is it, why is that the case? Why is it that our infrastructure construction is so slow in this country?

ALBANESE: Well it’s lower than some other countries for some good reasons and some not so good reasons. The good reasons are, we have very different occupational health and safety provisions, than a place like China, for example.

HOST: In other words, we value human life.

ALBANESE: Yes, essentially. We also value our environment. So there is a range of regulations that have to be gone through. I remember being in Shanghai many years ago. I went away in one of the first terms of Parliament. We were high up in this building and they were saying: “If there’s going to be an airport, there’s going to be the main airport where we’re going to build it in Pudong”, and I said: “In how long?” And we were looking at, just paddy fields. And they said: “Oh about four years”, and I said: “What’s happening to the people who are there?” “Oh they’re moving”. We have very different provisions so you do have to go through much stricter processes here in Australia but we have got some exciting things done.

The Regional Rail Link that was done when I was a Minister. The largest ever Federal contribution to a public transport project is now fantastic with new stations at places like Wyndham Vale and Tarneit. They’re a good example of what should happen if you build the railway line before the people and the housing and everything else that’s there. That hasn’t happened too often but that’s a good example of the planning from the former government and Steve Bracks and John Brumby.

Daniel is, I think, doing the right thing. It helps that Tim Pallas is the Treasurer who was a former Infrastructure Minister and I think they’ve got quite exciting proposals. They’re ahead of where they said they’d be in terms of the removal of level crossings and I think they’ve done it too, importantly without much Federal support. The amount of infrastructure dollars that went to Victoria last year, as a percentage of the national figure, was 7.7%. Even though one-in-four Australians are living in Victoria and Melbourne is Australia’s fastest-growing city, Victoria is Australia’s fastest-growing state.

HOST: Yes, I want to ask Albo in terms of the tone and the style of the campaign both have been very different. We’ve seen The Age in Australia, their editorial encouraged people to vote Labor and the Herald Sun encouraged people to vote Liberal. No surprises there. But the style and tone of the campaign. Often it’s, you know, for us as commentators we have a particular view, but as a Member of Parliament yourself and been through many elections as well as many elections where you’ve fronted up to the Greens. But also you’ve had a rare endorsement from News Corp in the last election when they ran a little campaign to save Albo, didn’t they?

ALBANESE: They did unusually. But I think in terms of the business model that the tabloids have, is to get people talking about them and it was a very successful front page.

HOST: It was, wasn’t it?

ALBANESE: It got people talking about the Daily Telegraph. And at the time my opponent had some pretty out-there views. He had argued that it was better to have essentially, the shorthand was, it was better to have Tony Abbott than Bill Shorten as Prime Minister if it meant better demos. And that is to me the weakness in the Greens Political Party is that essentially you can have people, take Martin Foley or Richard Wynne, they’re sitting around the cabinet table making decisions, really making a difference, not waiting until decisions are made and then deciding whether they’ll support it or oppose it or have a demo. And I understand that not everyone will agree with that perspective, but from me and who I am, given what we all sacrifice to be involved in politics in terms of giving up a whole lot of time and relationships with family and all of that, I don’t think I’d do it unless I was about being able to make those decisions and really make a substantial difference to people’s lives. And the plan that the Andrews Government have in terms of making a difference on renewables, making a difference on public transport, making a difference in how things like funding of your great radio station, actually makes a difference and it’s government that makes those decisions.

HOST: I think Macca has to say something.

HOST: Look, I want to acknowledge Josh Burns, who’s the Labor candidate for McNamara. As you know your good colleague Tanya Plibersek came down to Melbourne to pledge from a Shorten Government if elected next year $10 million for capital works, a capital contribution at the Pride Centre. But $600,000 for Joy for its transformation digitally and to move to the Pride Centre. Josh raised that and I know that that was discussed, you know, amongst Shadow Cabinet and that was a policy commitment given so we want to acknowledge that and your role in that.

ALBANESE: Absolutely. Josh I met with, when I did the Martin Foley event and beforehand I think he will make a huge difference. He’s very passionate about the local community and he fought very hard to get that commitment that will make a real difference. Joy FM is, I think, for your listeners to not take it for granted, there’s nothing like it in Sydney.

HOST: No we’re unique in Australia. That’s absolutely right.

ALBANESE: It is very special. In Sydney, years ago myself and Tanya Plibersek, when I was the Infrastructure Minister we gave a (inaudible) into a local radio station here FBI that, very similar in terms of largely run by volunteers and commitment from the local community, it does a whole lot of fantastic social programs. And it gives a voice to people and a small capital grant there, and they were about to go under because they basically didn’t have the right antenna and equipment. And a small grant there, I think from memory it was only about a couple of hundred thousand dollars, which in the scheme of things isn’t one of the larger government grants, but it kept it going and it’s thriving today.

HOST: A couple hundred thousand dollars wouldn’t even pay Stuart Robert’s travel expenses.

ALBANESE: For a week.

HOST: For a week. And of course we got a commitment …

ALBANESE: Let alone his internet bill.

HOST: That’s right. That would be a year’s internet. We did get from Daniel Andrews on Thursday on Tom and Warren’s show on Joy, a commitment of $200,000 a year for four years that wonderful word recurrent funding.

HOST: Gold.

HOST: Absolutely. Well actually it’s better than gold, Tass, it’s platinum. That will secure, should they be elected, Joy’s future. It’s also fair to say we did get a commitment of $500,000 from the Liberal Party.

HOST: Victorian Libs.

HOST: Victorian Libs. Good mate of yours Michael Kroger, he’s working honest to try and get a matching commitment from your people on the other side of the House from the Federal Liberals. We’ll see how that goes. I can’t quite see ScoMo signing that check.

ALBANESE: Yeah I’m not sure what the Tony Abbott forces that seem to be pretty dominant at the moment on those sorts of issues would think of all that.

HOST: Should we – no, no go on.

ALBANESE: But they shouldn’t have a problem. Like political parties, government have to represent everyone in the community and Australia is a diverse community. They’re made up of people of different races, religions and, yes, different sexuality. And it’s important that people see that the government is about them. It’s about an inclusive society and your radio station plays an important role in that.

HOST: Well we couldn’t disagree with you on that. It does feel to me though like some of your Federal colleagues on the other side actually are really committed to this notion of inclusion the way in which you have described. And it does make us feel constantly a little bit like you know: ‘You’re second class citizens and you know, just get what you’re given really.’

ALBANESE: Well and it’s unfortunate that there are some people in politics, and we’ve seen it played out in the Victorian election, who’ve been prepared to take what they see as groups that aren’t part of the majority and been prepared to vilify them openly to solve the sort of rhetoric that we’ve seen about so-called African gangs. That people can’t go out at night at, have dinner in Melbourne. But smear campaigns and the preparing to point the finger at anyone who isn’t the same as them is a bit sad actually. I think sometimes – I remember a few years ago Tony Abbott in a profile interview said that, you know, he was scared of gay and lesbian people.

HOST: Yes.

ALBANESE: And that’s quite sad. I think one of the great privileges of living in a country like ours is benefiting from the diversity and celebrating and admiring of each other with different not just cultures but subcultures as well. And you know I’ve always found that the community in Sydney has always been welcoming as long as people are prepared to show tolerance and respect then they’ll open up to them. And I think our Mardi Gras celebration every year is an example of that. But there’s many other examples as well.

HOST: Now I don’t know whether you’ve read it Albo, I’ve just actually finished Bob Woodward’s book Fear, which is about Donald Trump’s White House. And there’s a very clear thread and stories coming through that. And it is about picking out a particular group and marginalising them and insulting them and vilifying them. And this playbook unfortunately seems to be entering Australian politics. You know, whether it’s African gangs, whether it’s trans kids, whether it’s some of the quite ridiculous responses to the Royal Commission into Child Sexual Abuse, that there’s an element there that a lot of politicians are choosing, Pauline Hanson obviously is a great example. David Leyonhjelm. Fraser Anning. Particularly on the Right, using fear and marginalisation and racism as weapons as Trump has. How do we as a community respond to that Albo? What is the best way to respond to that?

ALBANESE: Well one way is to call it out for what it is. You just need to look at where it derives from to call it out for being a cynical exercise. I’m not sure what’s worse sometimes, people who are bigots or people who are not but choose to play that card for political advantage knowing that it’s wrong. People who aren’t …

HOST: I think they’re worse.

ALBANESE: Racist or sexist. I think sometimes you just shake your head for people who do know better. And many people in the hierarchy of course do know much better than that. But one of the things that happened of course is that the Republican playbook has been played out here very explicitly with people from the US coming here to assist on election campaigns. It certainly happened in the South Australian campaign recently which was successful for the Coalition. I’m not sure whether it is being, personnel are being used in Victoria by the Coalition or not. But certainly some of the fear campaign that’s been run by Matthew Guy. I’ve met Matthew Guy, he seems pretty reasonable one-on-one, but some of the rhetoric aimed at scaring people into voting for them is I think pretty shameful.

And we need to be much, much better than that. But I think the way to combat it is just to call it out, to engage in the debate whenever these issues are raised. And I have a great faith in humanity. I mean when, I first moved a Private Member’s Bill way back in 1998 in my first term about superannuation for same-sex couples and that was like revolutionary.  People were shuffling in their seat. People were really uncomfortable about it including some people in the Labor party, it must be said.

HOST: And if I recall correctly didn’t your colleagues want to know when you had become gay?

HOST: Yes.

ALBANESE: Yes, well why else would someone be promoting these issues. I think it was because it was my first term, a lot of people didn’t know me and didn’t know my partner. And so she was surprised to hear the rumours I’m sure. But it was: “Oh I didn’t know Albo was gay, that’s nice”. Because someone advocating these issues and, I deliberately picked superannuation because it was an area whereby you could say this is someone’s own money, they have a right to deliver it to their partner just the same as if it was someone of an opposite gender and people could accept that. And when you got that principle you could then move on to well if that discrimination is bad. How about migration, health, education?

HOST: Yeah.

ALBANESE: And of course eventually, but it is over a relatively short period of time when Australians voted, they shouldn’t have had to of, we knew what the result would be, and it’s unfortunate that Malcolm Turnbull’s weakness meant we did have the voluntary postal vote. But the support for that in the end was overwhelming.

What that showed was that people had thought about it. It didn’t happen just by accident. It happened because people went out there and argued the case particularly people from the community but also people who supported the community as well. And it’s a very good thing that that happened.

HOST: Now I actually remember that campaign on superannuation. Yourself, Tanya, Michael Danby, Simon Crean. You might recall us getting moved on out the front of the body shop in the Bourke St Mall.

ALBANESE: That’s right.

HOST: That’s how long …

ALBANESE: I actually took a photo of, I was in the Bourke St Mall just last week for the Richard Wynne, the John Button event, and I took a photo because it just hit me, the Body Shop, that’s where we launched the campaign which was ‘Same-Sex Same Right’.

HOST: That’s right.

ALBANESE: And we collected petitions in every body shop right around the country for this Private Member’s Bill. And the fact that, that was a radical thing for them to do at that time as well for a company to be associated with same-sex rights. And 20 years on it’s not, it’s not that radical a move, but it was then to their great credit.

HOST: Now were we’re nearly out of time.

HOST: I just have to tell another anecdote Tass.

HOST: Well you better hurry up.

HOST: Because, Peter Costello at the time. You know one of the issues here was that you know as a same-sex couple if I if I died that my partner could inherit my superannuation, but would have to pay marginal tax on it. And Peter Costello thought that was right and I got into trouble at the time because I told him to keep his grubby dirty hands out of our coffins.

ALBANESE: It was a succinct but effective grab.

HOST: Now Albo as we wind-up. What’s your prediction for the outcome of today’s State election?

ALBANESE: Look I think that I’m not silly enough to make predictions.

HOST: But we’re asking you to.

ALBANESE: At least not on air. I think Daniel Andrews Government does deserve to be returned. I certainly hope that they are. And I hope they are returned to govern in their own right. Having been part of a minority government that I think was very effective under Julia Gillard, the truth is that the politics of that were very difficult, explaining that everything was undermined very unfairly I think every time that we made a policy issue. So I hope Daniel is able to continue to be a progressive government there in Victoria is the most progressive government in Australia.

HOST: That sounds more like a wish than a prediction.

ALBANESE: Well I think that, I think it will be re-elected, but it’s in the hands of the voters and we will wait and see. But I predict that Richard Wynne and Martin Foley will both be re-elected. They are people who are from my experience of people campaigning with them, they’re held in high esteem by their local community and they deserve to be.

HOST: And that’s a big call for Richard Wynne given that there is no Liberal candidate running against him.

ALBANESE: Yeah but you look at what’s happened there, the protection of the Yarra, so it’s got trees not high rises on its banks. The Safe Injecting Room, that will go if there’s a change of government. That will go. That will make a difference in terms of literally costing lives. The sort of changes that he’s made in the local community to the schools will all be undermined if he’s not there to stand up for them.

HOST: Ah we’ve run out of time Albo. We’ll let you get back to concentrating on removing what you would probably regard as the Federal minority government representing a minority view.

ALBANESE: I am looking forward to Monday in Parliament. It’s going to be an interesting last fortnight.

HOST: Yes. Look thanks for your time. You’ve been very generous with us this morning. I know how important Saturday mornings are to politicians you know lots of family stuff and other things to do so thank you so much for your generosity. Your support of Josh Byrne proposal for funding for Joy, should you win, we really appreciate it. Thank you.

ALBANESE: It’s been my pleasure.

HOST: Yeah cheers. Thanks a lot.

 

Nov 19, 2018

Transcript of Doorstop – Leppington – Monday, 19 November 2018

Subjects: Public transport; Leppington Park and Ride upgrade, Campbelltown Train Station.

ANTHONY ALBANESE: Thanks for joining us here at Leppington Railway Station. Of course the Leppington Rail Line is a legacy of the former NSW Labor Government and today I am here with Michael Daley, the New South Wales Labor Leader. I also have with us Dr Mike Freelander, the Member for Macarthur; Anne Stanley, the Member for Werriwa, Aoife Champion, Labor’s Candidate for Hume; we have Anoulack Chanthivong, the State Member for Macquarie Fields; Greg Warren, State Member for Campbelltown and Sally Quinnell, the Labor candidate for Camden.

We are here today to announce joint funding from Federal and New South Wales Labor for a Park and Ride Facility upgrade here at this station. You can see when you arrive here not just that the car park is full, but right around the area people park hundreds of metres away as a direct result of the lack of facilities here. What we need to do is to upgrade Park and Ride facilities and that’s why Labor has established federally a $300 million Commuter Park and Ride Fund. It will upgrade facilities right around the country, but particularly in our outer suburbs and this follows on from announcements that we have made at Schofields in the north-west, at Riverwood and on the Central Coast here in NSW to build these facilities.

This of course is also the location for where we will upgrade the North-South rail corridor through Badgerys Creek Airport to give people the access to the high-value jobs that will come along that North-South corridor as a result of the airport and surrounding developments. So we will commit to $3 billion, we have on the table, for the upgrade and a new rail line from here connecting up through Badgerys Creek, up to St Marys and we will also have a connection down to the Macarthur region, because we want people in Western Sydney to have access to those high-value jobs and we want to partner with New South Wales Labor under Michael Daley, who understands the needs of people in our outer suburbs.

We understand that successful cities are inclusive cities. For that we need to upgrade public transport facilities and that is the key to making sure that people have access to those jobs, that people can get to and from work and can also get to and from their recreational activities. Sydney needs to grow in a way that doesn’t just all point towards the CBD. We need those growth corridors in outer Western Sydney to make sure that people have access to those jobs and this project will do just that.

MICHEL DALEY: Well thank you very much Anthony. It’s good to be here with the Western Sydney MPs. I have been Shadow Treasurer and Shadow Minister for Planning and Infrastructure and the message from the Western Sydney MPs over the years has been to me, and over the week that I have been the Leader, people don’t ask for much, they just want their fair share. So it is governments’ job to make life easier for people in their daily commute.

Last week we announced a terrific program that children of all ages, no matter where they are travelling, what time of day, where they are coming from or where they are going, will travel free on the Opal network. And today with another joint announcement with Federal Labor, this is a further commitment to making life easier and better for families and people who just want to commute. We know that Sydney is an expensive place to live. We know that people understand that Sydney is growing. But they want their fair share. They want particularly Government to invest in real things that can keep the services in line with the growth.

So today, an $8 million announcement, a joint $16 million announcement, to make life easier for commuters in Western Sydney and I have to say I am looking forward to being Premier with Bill Shorten as Prime Minister of Australia. Together we will get terrific things done.

Let’s not forget that the Shorten Opposition has promised $3 billion for the Western Metro, $3 billion to connect this station up to St Marys through Badgerys Creek. People are sick of politicians fighting with each other. They want their politicians and governments working together. That is why it is great to be here with Anthony Albanese for this worthwhile announcement.

REPORTER: To Michael, the State Government has announced that it has cancelled plans to upgrade commuter parking at Campbelltown Station as promised in 2015. Does Labor have any plans to take up that promise?

DALEY: We’ve got a billion dollar fund – that’s a lot of money – a billion dollar fund to improve trains stations all across New South Wales. We will be making announcements in coming days about where we will spend that. Greg Warren can probably have a word to you about that as well, the local member. Greg?

GREG WARREN: Well you’ve got more chance of finding a promise that Gladys Berejiklian hasn’t broken than a car park for Campelltown Railway Station. Then- Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian promised the people of Campbelltown, promised the people of Macarthur, an extra 450 car park spaces. We now know they have broken that promise and back-flipped. It is clear that only a Federal and/or State Labor Government will deliver the commuter needs of Campbelltown. Now there is going to be more to say about that as Michael just said, but the people of Macarthur and indeed South-West Sydney have again been let down by Gladys Berejiklian, Andrew Constance and the New South Wales Liberals.

DALEY: I just have to say in respect of the cancellation of this and other projects, people should ask this very simple question: How is it that the Berejiklian Government can find billions of dollars for stadiums, but they can’t help people out with commuter car parks? That’s a simple question and only the Premier can answer that.

REPORTER: Anthony you mentioned the North-South rail link before. When is Labor likely to (inaudible)?

ALBANESE: Well we of course are committed to it. We have said we will have real dollars attached. One of the tragedies is that we had a Western Sydney City Deal and they announced their support for a rail corridor, but we haven’t had a single dollar from the Berejiklian Government or a single dollar from the ATM Government in Canberra towards this project. What Federal Labor will do is partner with a Daley Labor Government here in New South Wales to deliver upgrades to public transport, whether it be the North-South Corridor through Badgery’s Creek Airport, whether it be the Western Metro or whether it be upgrades in commuter car parks such as this in order to facilitate access to public transport. We know that it’s only Federal Labor that will actually put real dollars towards public transport projects. That is the history of public transport in this state and indeed in the nation, and their failure to deliver, it has been consistent since Federation. They simply haven’t put into public transport projects.


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