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Craig Thomson quits -

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(generated from captions) have to be outed. The Gillard

Government has growing scandal

on its hands with police now

investigating Federal Labor back

Thomson's under pressure to

explain how his union credit

card was used to pay for escort

services. The Member for Dobell says he's innocent but he resigned as chairman of the

parliament's powerful economics

committee saying he doesn't

want to be a distraction. In

Parliament the furore over the

matter's growing more rancorous

by the day as is the language

in the carbon tax debate.

Here's political editor Chris

Uhlmann.

There is such a thing as bad

publicity and Labor's crig

Thomson is getting what some

believe is his fair share as

every day sheds more light on a

colourful past and puts colourful past and puts more

pressure on his party. I'm not

going to comment about the tax affairs of either the Member

for Dobell, the ALP or any

lawyers or anyone else involved in these matters. And his Prime

Minister. The Member for Dobell

has amended his declaration of

interests and he has advised

he's disclosed all relevant

matters. This is the prime

minister who has not got the

intestinal ford tut to do with

Craig Thomson as Craig Thomson as she knows should be done with him. Craig Thomson is accused of misusing

his credit card when he was the

head of the Health Services

Union. There are questions over

$100,000 worth of unreceipted

cash withdrawals and who twice

used it to procur prostitutes.

Mr Thomson has always denied it

was him but the Opposition's

chief prosecutor has

the police. Late this morning

the NSW police announced that following the provision of

information in a letter which sent to Commissioner Scippione

late yesterday in relation to a

number of matters concerning

Craig Thomson, they were now

going to examine the matter to

determine whether a criminal offence had occurred. The

other matter that's very much

alive and current, of course,

is the Fair Work Australia investigation and as George

said that's a matter that we are looking at whether there

are grounds for are grounds for an investigation. Fair Work

Australia's interest is in

whether Mr Thomson misled its

inquiry into the matter and then there are questions about

why the Labor Party paid to

settle his legal bills. What involvement did the Prime

Minister or her office have in

negotiating the gift to the

Member for Dobell to settle his defamation action against

Fairfax Media Limited with Senator of the Labor Party and the

Member for Dobell? I've said

publicly decisions about

finances related to the NSW

Labor Party are for

Labor Party to make. The point

of all of this is to force Mr

Thomson from office and Labor from government, which is

possible if he was convicted of an offence

an offence that carries a

sentence of more than a year. The offence of fraud

under section 192 E of the NSW Crimes

penalty of imprisonment for 10

years. The pressure is telling.

Late this afternoon Craig

Thomson stood down from his

position as chair of the house economics committee. There are

no charges against Mr Thomson

but there is a charge of shop lifting levelled against

Coalition Senator Mary Jo Fisher. He's applying that

standard to a member of his own

team. I would think as an act

of fairness he ought to apply that standard more broadly. Senator Fisher has

also stood aside from

with a long memory sees a

little more than hip hi pockcy

in the Coalition's

pursuit. This from a party who

lost 9 ministers and

parliamentary secretaries while

they were in government, who

had to resign as a result of

either rorts or conflicts of

interests. 11.5 years of

sleaze, ministerial scandals and abuse of power. That's what

the Howard Government was like. This is bare-knuckle

politics and Tony Abbott signals he intends to play it

just as hard when the carbon

tax bills come before

Parliament. He's told his party

room that they have to be in

the House for every vote and

under no circumstances will he

grant a pair to the Government

during the debate. So if someone's rushed to hospital or

has a death in the family, no quarter will be given. The Government is equally

determined to see the bills

passed and is amping up its attack. Now prohibition on trading carbon

permits with other countries permits with other countries is economic xenophobia. It sends

the signal that it's somehow dubious to trade with

foreigners. It's typical dog

whistle politics, trashing the

commitment that's existed for

many years on both sides of

politics to economic

liberalisation and open liberalisation and open trade.

It is, in effect, a white

carbon policy designed to

harvest some more votes no