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Australian Agenda -

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(generated from captions) captioned by Ai-Media This program will be live

This is PM Agenda.

Good afternoon welcome to

the program. Tony Abbott has

just made life a whole lot

harder for a lot of Labor MPs

on the issue of poker machine

reforms. Yes, there is general support majority support in the community for

tougher laws, and more to be

done on the issue of problem

gambling, but for many Labor

MPs in NSW and Queensland

they are facing a ferocious

campaign from the clubs

industry against these mandatory pre-commitment laws. That independent Andrew

Wilkie is forcing upon the government. Now Tony Abbott

is saying that he will be

arguing for the Coalition to

once they and if they win the

next election, rescind these laws. That will ensure that

this remains a political

issue right up until the election, regardless of what happens in the parliament early next year when these

laws are due to be debated.

Coming up we will hear more

from Tony Abbott on this,

he's been speaking to the

media in Perth today and

explaining his position on

that. We will also be joined

by Anthony Ball, the head of

Clubs Australia, what does

this mean for the clubs, will

they bother going ahead with

install be mandatory pre-commitment technology?

The Prime Minister has been

talking to the media, we will bring those comments to you

as well with signs there will be an interest rate cut next

week on Melbourne Cup day

with the inflation figures

out today. We will have more

on that as well and of course

Melbourne. What a warm the Queen's visit to

reception we saw there for

her today. More on that,

has this hour's top stories. first up with Vannessa who

David thank you, yes wasn't it extraordinary her Majesty

and the Duke of Edinburgh now

Commonwealth Heads of on their way to Perth for the

Government Meeting after

meeting thousands of well

wishers in Melbourne today. Earlier the royal couple

Royal Children's Hospital attended the opening of the

before heading to Federation

Square. Joining us now live

from Melbourne is excuse

national affairs correspond

Celina Edmonds. And the royal

hour ago now for Perth? couple took off roughly an

That's right. On their way

to Perth of course for CHOGM,

where they will be on later

Commonwealth Heads of this evening and opening the

Government Meeting on Friday.

And banquets and receptions

followed by a great Aussie

barbeque and no doubt again

tens of thousands of people

going to greet them, it was

only four hours in Melbourne

but what a four hours it was.

Quite extraordinary, the

opening of the new Royal Children's Hospital by the

Queen and her greeting Dame

Elizabeth Murdoch as well.

102 years old. She was there

back in 1963 when the Queen opened the first hospital and

there she was again. Quite

amazing. Then on to

Federation Square and those

remarkable pictures that we

have seen of the crowds that

greeted her Majesty. She came

out of the Ian Potter centre,

that centre by the National

Gallery of Victoria, merged

on to Federation Square, and

thousands of people greeted

her. Thrusting cards,

flowers, bears, all manner of

gifts for her imaginest city

and the Duke of Edinburgh --

her Majesty and the Duke of

Edinburgh as they made their

way down the red caret, so

many people in that sea. And

then they went on that tram

ride. Now, everyone in Melbourne visiting Melbourne always getting on a tram around so did the royal

couple. Great to see and a

refurbished tram, a royal

tram they got on for their

journey, un-St Kilda Road on the way to Government House

for that lunchtime reception.

Cheered on by thousands, some

singing 'God save the Queen' quite extraordinary scenes in

Melbourne today and the Queen

and Duke of Edinburgh then

boarded their flight for

Perth and that's where

they're heading for

Commonwealth Heads of

wait and see whether Perth Government Meeting and let's

will turn on the kind of

reception that they have seen

in Queensland, now in

Melbourne, also in Canberra

of course in between, now

they are off to Perth. Quite

an amazing few hours of

coverage here on Sky News. It

was interesting to hear too a royal reporter saying they

didn't think they had seen as

big a reception in a long time for the Queen. We will

have to leave it there thank

you. Now for a look at

federal politics, let's go

back to Canberra and David

Speers. Thanks very much.

Now as we have been reporting today, Tony Abbott overnight

made it clear that he will be

arguing in the Coalition party room for opposition to

the government's mandatory pre-commitment technology on

poker machines but then also

if they win the election to

rescind those laws, Andrew

Wilkie as we have seen this

afternoon not too impressed

with that and says he will be

raising his concerns directly

with Tony Abbott. Thinks he

might have miss spoken. We will hear from Tony Abbott in

a moment. First to the Prime

Minister who has been

addressing the media in Perth

this afternoon as well. She's

Government Meeting which Commonwealth Heads of there of course for the

also been talking about she's hosting this week but

manufacturing, a big issue

around Australia, the

pressure that manufacturing

is under with the high

Australian dollar. We did see

inflation figures out today,

which were much lower than expected, that mean s

interest rate rises next week

on Melbourne Cup day is now looking a whole lot more

likely. The Prime Minister

now commenting on that and

the pressures on

Should companies and unions manufacturing in Australia.

that are concerned about the

future of manufacturing and

some wanting protections

measures come and have a look

at this place and is this the

example of what you say when

you want people to

concentrate on innovation?

This is a great example and

while they would have to be

in touch with the Hoffman

family and get all of the

appropriate permissions other

sections of manufacturing

would do well to look at the

track record of this place.

How it stayed in the

forefront of research and

development. How it's met its

customer's needs and how it's

invested in skills and

training every step of the

way. These are the key

ingredients that has made

this business a success and

this business is now drawing from the wealth of the resources industry and that's

what I want to see across

Australian manufacturing as

our resources giants demand manufactured products that Australian manufacturing is

there able to meet their

needs. Anna Bligh coming

over here to poach WA workers

(inaudible)? We do have

skills shortages in some important parts of our

nation, and we need to make

sure that we are training

Australians. That's why we

allocated $3 billion in the

budget to build on our

already record investment s

in skills and training. I

have said before and I'm

happy to say is again, in

this era of the patchwork

economy it is not acceptable

to me as Prime Minister that

I can meet with mining CEOs

who tell me we don't have

enough skilled labour and I

can talk to my Labor members

in states like this one, and

they can point to an un

employed young person who

hasn't got a chance at an apprenticeship. We can do

better that that and our $3 billion investment in skills

is part of doing better than

that so we are giving people

opportunities to participate

in the wealth flowing from

the mining boom. Your

reaction to Tony Abbott's

comments on pokies and

specifically will that make

it hard er for you to get it

through parliament? Heavens

above, Tony Abbott saying no

to something who would have

thought. I'm unsurprised. Any

proposition put in the public

policy debate Tony Abbott

says no. When (inaudible) do

you have any information

about the death of the Tamil

man in immigration. I will

be meeting the President of

Sri Lanka today, clearly the courteous thing for me to do

is to have the discussion

with him first rather than

publicly canvass matters

which may be raised in that

discussion before I have it.

But I have been clear about Australia's position in

relation to allegations of

human rights abuses in Sri

Lanka. We believe that this

is a serious question. The

nation of Sri Lanka is going

through ta process known as

the lessons learned and

reconciliation commission

process, that process needs

to pay regard to the work

already done by the UN on

human rights issues in Sri

Lanka in the final stages of

the conflict there. On the

question of the death of a

man in Villawood I have been

advised of that death. The

circumstances are being

investigated so I'm not in a

position to give further

details. You said that the

next Commonwealth conference

will definitely go ahead in Sri Lanka but some countries

are threatening to boycott.

Do you think that's going to

be a real problem that there

will be a number of country s

and what will Australia's

attitude be? ? My

understanding is that there

is no proposal to revisit the

hosting of the next Commonwealth Heads of

Government Meeting. Do you

think there are any problems

with hosting it there though? Look my understanding is

there is no intention to revisit the question of

hosting of the next CHOGM

meeting. On the question of

human right abuses and

allegations of those abuses

in Sri Lanka the government's position is as I have just

outlined it, we have

consistently raised our

concerns about human rights

questions in the end stage

conflict. These need to be

addressed by Sri Lanka

through its lessons learned

in reconciliation commission.

Prime Minister, yesterday

you broadly recommended the

adoption of the EPG

recommendations. Do you

specifically endorse the

appointment of a commissioner

for human rights democracy

and the law? Our focus at

this meeting is on strengthening the

Commonwealth and on reform.

We know that the Commonwealth's values have

spoken loud around our world

for a long period of time,

like every others the

Commonwealth needs to keep -- like every organisation the Commonwealth needs to keep

improving and changing and

reforming to meet the needs

of the modern age. In indeed Secretary-General has talked

about this like the creation

of the website, the on-line connection process that there

is now is for Commonwealth

countries and for organisations within Commonwealth countries. So in

this meeting of CHOGM I

believe the Commonwealth does need to address strengthening

for the future, leaders will

have the opportunity to be

informed of all of the

findings of the eminent

persons group, and have a

robust discussion informed by

that group. So does Australia support the commissioner? These discussion also be held in

the leader's meeting. We have

said that we believe there is

a need for reform. On the

specific proposals of the

eminent person's group, and

they are many in number, they

will be the subject of discussions in the room, in

the leader's meeting, it's

not my intention to canvass what will be said in that

room prior to the meeting

being held. Just on a lighter

note how is Perth looking

ahead of CHOGM? I think Perth continues to look

wonderful ahead of CHOGM. I

have been particularly

impressed by the flowers

everywhere in the city. The

city is certainly putting its

best face forward. We are

waiting for some sunshine,

and we have been promised

sunshine later in the week by

the Wei Jiao Bau so what with

by the weather bureau so what

we want now is clear Perth

skies as well so sunshine is

coming down on a city that

looks very fresh faced and

welcome for the international

guests. Is it one of the 500 (inaudible) permits and what

protection will there be for

the more than 450 people who

are employed by this? Let's

be very clear about our

carbon pricing package, the

price is paid by the biggest

polluters, for our

manufacturing industry we

have set aside in addition to

the more than $9 billion of

assistance in the jobs and competitiveness package more

than an extra $1 billion so

manufacturing can seize a

clean energy future and let's

remember as we have walked

around here seeing all of the rackable things that are made

here by -- remarkable things

that are made by Hoffmanns

amongst them they are testing

wind turbines part of the

clean energy future. Is this

one of the (inaudible)

biggest pollute ers? ? As

you know the assessment of

those paying the price is -

will be finalised as we move

to carbon pricing on 1 July

next year. It is about who

is generating carbon

pollution when the carbon

price comes into effect. The

Prime Minister speaking to

reporters in Perth on site

talking manufacturing. And

the future of manufacturing

jobs in Australia, also reflects on the Commonwealth leader's talks this week in

Perth. She will be meeting

Sri Lankan President a little later today in a couple of

hows from now and of course

we heard the concerns about

human rights in Sri Lanka and

particularly this President

who has been accused himself

of war crimes. Accusations he denies. But the Prime

Minister there making it

clear that Australia has

consistently raised its

concerns about human rights

abuses in Sri Lanka.

Indicates she will do so again directly President in

those talks later today. On this contentious issue with

the CHOGM talks about whether

there should be a

Commonwealth human rights

democracy and rule of law

commissioner, non-committal

on that, saying that's

something for leaders to

discuss privately, you would

expect that Australia will be

arguing that there should be

this sort of commissioner but

publicly she's saying that's

something for the leaders to

discuss within their

grouping. When they meet on

Friday and Saturday they are

in Perth. The PM also not terribly surprised Tony

Abbott's comments on poker

machine reforms that he will

want to res ind the mandatory

pree commitment technology if

he becomes Prime Minister.

These were comments Tony

Abbott made overnight at an

event in Campbelltown RSL on Sydney's outskirts, an event

that was clearly held to

rally support against these

reforms of poker machines.

The Opposition Leader also in

Perth today, has been talking

more about this issue and

what his position is. Let's

look at those comments. The

point I made last night was

that we haven't seen any

legislation. It hasn't gone

to the shadow cabinet and

hasn't gone to the party

room. But I do know my party

room. I know the mood of my

party. I know the values and

principles of my party, and

we support more freedom not

less, and we are instinctively resistant to

anything that smacks of the

nanny state. That's why my

prediction is that when the legislation does come before

us, if it comes before us, we

will resolve to oppose it in

opposition and resind it in

government. But I do also

want to make the point that

the Labor Party is bitterly

divided on this. It's obvious that Labor members of parliament, including Labor

cabinet ministers, hate it,

it's very significant that when Kevin Rudd was asked

about this today he refused

to comment because the word

around the traps is that he's

using this as part of his

pitch to his caucus

colleagues in his bid to get

the numbers. So people need

to understand that the only

reason the country is now

considering mandatory pre-commitment is not because

it's in the national

interests, but because it was

necessary for the political survival of the Prime

Minister. This is a Prime

Minister who has sold her

soul to save her job. You

said last night the social

fabric of society was at risk

under the government's pokie

machine reforms. You are in

Western Australia where there

aren't any pokie machines, is

the social fabric of society

at risk here? I accept that

the situation in Western

Australia is a little

different from the situation

in NSW, Queensland and to a

lesser extent the other

states. But in NSW certainly.

And in Queensland to a great

extent. Whole communities are

very much sh if not dependant

they are sernsly influenced

by the community -- certainly

influenced by the community

clubs movement. The community clubs movement is very, very

important in those states,

for many, many decades now

these community clubs in

those states have had poker

machines. Sure we need to do

the right thing by problem

gamblers, we need to do more

to provide counselling for

them, we need to do more to

try to ensure that we don't

see more problem gambling in

new areas, but there is no point taking action that does

more harm than good. And

that's my problem with

mandatory pre-commitment. It

won't be effective against

problem gamblers but it will

do enormous damage to these

community clubs. But do you

think it's healthy that these

clubs have to rely on gambling revenue. Is that

healthy to the fabric of

society? What they are

relying on is people coming

into their clubs, and doing

the kinds of things which free Australians are

accustomed to do. Now, no-one

should put more than he or

she can afford into the poker

machines. No-one should do

that. Some people do and that

is a matter of deep regret by

everyone. The question is,

how can we effectively deal

with this without doing more

harm than good? And that's

the problem with this

mandatory pre-commitment. It will impose very high costs

on our community, it will impose very high

establishment costs on these

clubs, but there is no

serious evidence that it is

going to stop the problem

that is designed to

address. But there is no

problem in WA with pokies so

why such doom and gloom in

the eastern states? We survive without them, our

clubs are fine. I just - I

accept the point that Western

Australia is different but I

don't accept that because the

club movement in Western

Australia is different to the

club movement in the eastern

states that we should willy-nilly inflict on the

club movement in the eastern

states something that will do

great damage to them and to

all the community

organisations which depend on

them without necessarily

doing anything much to help

problem gamblers. Should

Julia Gillard meet with the

Sri Lankan President given he

has been shrouded by war

crimes allegations? Look, I

think that the Prime Minister

should meet with the other

heads of government here at the Commonwealth Heads of

Government Meeting. I mean,

if someone who is the head of

government of a Commonwealth

country is good enough to

come to Australia for this

meeting I think they are good

enough to meet the Prime Minister. A Sri Lankan asylum

seeker committed suicide

overnight, do you think,

despite granted refugee

status a year ago he's been

waiting for the process.

Refugee advocates say that responsibility lies with the

minister, do you agree with that? Look I think this is

obviously a tragedy. We only

just know of this tragedy. No

doubt it will be fully

investigated and once those

investigations have taken

place, if there is anything

more to say it will be

said. Your policy is to keep

asylum seekers in detention, do you think this particular refugee should have been

moved into the community

considering his status had

already been approved? Well,

the point I have made all

along is that if you have

policies in place which

stopped the boats you don't

have people in detention. Now

that's a general point that I

am making. As for this

particular individual it is a

tragedy. Just a tragedy. And

let's not try to draw too

many policy outcomes from

what is an individual

tragedy. Just back on CHOGM

think you are meeting with

Steven Harper at some stage

during the event. He said he

might pull out of CHOGM in

2013 because it's due to be

held in Sri Lanka in they

don't improve their human

rights record. Is that something Australia should consider also? There is

quite a lot of water to flow

under the bridge between now and the next meeting of CHOGM. Think the important

thing is to get the best

possible out come from this

meeting before we start

worrying about what might or

might not happen at the next

meeting. I do say though that

it's important for all

countries to pursue human

decency, I think it is

important for all countries

to treat their people fairly

and justly and obviously one

of the reasons why I have

been so hostile to the

so-called Malaysia people

swap is because people who

come to our country, even

illegally by boat, do become

people to whom we have some

duty of care and we've got to discharge that in accordance

with Australian standards of

decency. Have you met any Malaysian representatives at

all while you're here? My

understanding is that I have

got a pretty full program of

meetings with the

representatives of various Commonwealth countries and I'm looking forward to them

all but as for the diary details I'm not going to

comment on them. -- Tony Abbott talking to reporters

in Perth a short time ago. We

will take a quick break then

we will be joined by head of

Clubs Australia Anthony Ball

for more on this poker machine fight.

As we have just seen Tony

Abbott has upped the stakes

over poker machines, making

it clear he wants to resind

any mandatory pre-commitment

laws if he becomes Prime

Minister. These are reforms

that independent MP Andrew

Wilkie is pressing on the government to roll out

mandatory pre-commitment to essentially require gamblers

to nominate how much they are

willing to punt and how much

they are will willing to

lose before they start

betting on poker machines.

Only those who want to spend

more than $1 a spin on the

poke er machines, Andrew

Wilkie has reacted to Tony

Abbott's comments overnight

saying that he will confront

the Opposition Leader next

time they meet. He says he is

not sure Tony Abbott

understands or even means

what he's saying. Here he was

earlier in the day. But this

will be the first thing I

want to talk to him about

next week when I do meet with

him because I am confident

that if he understands the

problem and if he understands

that these Productivity

Commission reforms are well

researched, I still think he

could get behind them. I

actually think he might have

just gone too far last night.

He's got a bit of a track

record of saying different

things to different groups of

people. And maybe in the heat

of the moment last night, in

an orchestrated rally by the

poker machine industry, I'm

hope ing he went a bit further than he intended to

go. Andrew Wilkie talking

earlier today. It is clear

from Tony Abbott's comments

we saw a little earlier this wasn't something off the

cuff. He has thought this

through and knows that what's

been a headache for a lot of Labor MPs particularly NSW and Queensland where the

clubs have been campaigning

strongly against the poker

machine reforms, now become a

migraine for them given it

will now become a political

issue right up until the e

election with the Coalition

pledging to get rid of any mandatory pre commitment

laws. Clubs Australia boss

Anthony Ball joins us now

from Sydney for more on this.

Thanks for your time. What

does Tony Abbott's position

and comments on this now mean

for the clubs? If these laws

go through it would require

clubs to introduce mandatory pre-commitment technology by

2014 but now you could have

Tony Abbott in power before

then, would you even bother

installing this technology?

Well, I think the first

thing to point out is that

Tony Abbott perfectly understands Andrew Wilkie's

plan. And that plan is to

make every Australian who

wants to play one of the

200,000 poker machines that currently operate, make them

register, get a card, provide

their personal details and

have their play tracked. And

I think Tony Abbott understands that perfectly. Not according to

Andrew Wilkie, he says 88% of

poker machine players

wouldn't have to do that. At

the moment 88 pfls according

to Andrew Wilkie $1 a spin

you will not need one of the

cards, it is only the small

number who do bet a lot more who will be required to

nominate what they areallying

to lose. That's a fiction.

Let me clear this up once and

for all. If somebody wants to

play one of the 200,000 poker

machines that currently

operate in Australia they

will need the card. If they

want to play one of these

fictitious machines that

haven't been in invented yet

maybe they won't. But the

fact is you want to play one

of them as they currently

operate you get the card. And

Tony Abbott understands that.

And so do we. And this is the

problem that Andrew Wilkie

has, is that people are now

starting to understand that

this is hugely intrusive,

they are also understanding

it is not going to help problem gamblers. How do you

help somebody who is addicted

to gambling by giving them a

gambling card? I was at the

rally last night and Tony

Abbott said this is not a debate over whether we care

for problem gamblers or not. Everybody does. Everybody

wants to do more. This is a

battle over how to go about

it. Again, Andrew Wilkie and

Nick Xenophon those

supporting the reform say

what you have been talking

about for the majority of

machines is simply reducing

the betting limit. That that wouldn't cost you nearly as much as the mandatory commitment technology

might. They are very con -- confused. We have Nick

Xenophon saying this mandatory pre-commitment

scheme is meant to help

recreation al gamblers and

Andrew Wilkie saying it is helping problem gambler

blers. There is mass

confusion evening amongst the

most ardent anti-gambling advocates what's the rest of

of the community meant to

make of it? But on this point, of reducing the betting limit on machines

down to $1, is that really

going to cost the industry

much? They have changed it

in Victoria in recent years.

Down from $10 to $5 without

too much fuss from the industry. This is the Greens

policy, it is not Andrew

Wilkie's off or government's

or Tony Abbotts it is the

next silver bullet solution. Is it a compromise

though that wouldn't cost the

clubs anywhere near as much as mandatory pre-commitment

technology? Well it's the

next silver bullet and yes it

will be hugely expensive to

do. You can't reduce a

maximum bet from $1 to $1 and

change the game over holus-bolus. The people who

make the machines tell us

this, as a minimum it will

cost $5,000 to change and

that's for the most recently

made machines for the older

machines you need to replace

them. So it's not going to be

much cheaper at all than

mandatory pre-commitment. So

is there any scope for a compromise? We are not going

to jump at any silver bullet

solution. We are prepared to

go back to basics, where we

were when Kevin Rudd was

Prime Minister actually, and

set up a proper process where

the states and territories

along with the industry and

the experts would sit down

and work through this issue

of pre-commitment and any

other issue that people

thought might work. That's

the sensible way to do it.

You don't sign a deal behind

closed doors to people without consulting anybody

and expect it to fly. People

will respond badly to that

and we have. Look clubs have

already done a awful lot in

this space for more than a decade and a half. For more

than a decade and a half.

Long before Nick Xenophon was

in parliament, long before

Andrew Wilkie was and we are

prepared to do more. We

launched a six point plan in October 2008 that talked

about those things, what we

won't do is accept the policy

that's coming out of a

political deal. But they are

still say ing problem

gambling is a huge issue. I'm

trying to get to what sort of

compromise clubs are willing

to acome dad here. Are you

saying that -- accommodate here. Are you saying any

money that has to be spent changing your machines to

reduce the betting limit or

put mandatory pre-commitment

technology is not in prospect

here? You are not willing to

doing in that's going to cost

money? No not at all. In fact

we have said we are willing to work with the government

on a system of pre-commitment

but not one that is mandfully

for the player. Look the

point -- mand for the player.

The point is when you are

looking such a large change,

such a expensive change, a

big policy change you need to

test it properly. You need to

do a cost benefit analysis.

Firstly will it help problem

gamblers. We say no. Many

experts say that it won't

help. Then at least let's do

a trial. The Salvation Army

eastern territory are saying let's have a trial. Lifeline are saying let's have a

trial. We are saying let's

have a trial. Let's do that

to see whether it will help

problem gamblers then once we tick that box let's work out

what the costs are. See if it

passes a basic cost benefit

analysis. If it doesn't pass

that let's look for other

effective collusions for

problem gamblers -- solutions

for problem gamblers, there

are some. There has been a suggestion of a trial here in

the ACT. Would you be happy

to see that happen and would

it be mandatory or voluntary pre-commitment? We would

support a proper trial of mandatory pre-commitment

whenever there is a State Government that will agree to

do it. We will mobilise the

clubs behind it but it needs

to be a proper trial not a tin pot one like Andrew

Wilkie wants, a so-called

technical trial. Itneses to

messer the impact on problem gambling, recreational gambling revenues to the

venue and state. That's a

proper trial and we will

swing in behind that. And

just getting back to Tony

Abbott's position, as I asked earlier how does this change the position for the club?

Does it mean that given he's

going to be promising to get rid of mandatory pre-commitment technology

even if the laws go through

would you both er installing

it? Would you bother rolls

it out and spending the money? Before we even think

about that we are going to

try to convince the

government and others this is

a policy not worth pursuing.

We are a long way from that.

It is comforting to know Tony

Abbott has a view on this

that we think can be

effective, can work, but we

are not giving up on

convincing people that giving

problem gamblers a gambling

card is not the way to

approach the issue. Anthony

Ball head of Clubs Australia,

thanks for joining us this afternoon. Pleasure. After

the break our panel, same

anda Maiden from the 'Sunday

telegraph' and Christian Ker

from 'The Australian'.

Time for our panel

discussion this afternoon we

are joined by Christian Kerr from 'The Australian' and

Samantha Maiden from the

'Sunday Telegraph' thanks for

joining us, the pokies issue

first up. Let's recap the

secrets of events here, Tony

Abbott last night was a big

event at the Campbelltown

RSL, where essentially an

event to rally support

against the poker machine

reforms and that's where Tony Abbott made these comments.

I do know that freedom and choice are important to my

party room. I also know that

anything that smacks of the

nanny state will not be

welcome by my party room. So

when this legislation comes

before the parliament I

predict that we will oppose

it. And if this legislation

is passed by the parliament

and if we then subsequently

form a government I predict

we will resind it. That's

what I predict. They will

cheer for thafrment I also

wanted to point out that Labor's Laurie Ferguson was

there, and have you got to

give him points for stoically

facing the crowd on this.

Have a look at his - the reaction he got sticking up

for the pokery reforms. --

pokie reforms. Tony unfortunately belled the cat

in some way. He said his club

has a voluntary system and

it's a waste of time. Well

it's very interesting to know

the club movement in this

state he said that's what

they are premayored to do.

That's a good solution and

that will help. He told us

tonight it's a waste of time.

All this tough will

counselling and education,

every one in this room knows

it is ineffective. We need to

work together to make sure

there is a reasonable

outcome. Thank you. A

number of Labor MPs have done

this in front of the crowd.

Christian is it a good idea

for them do you thunk to face

the critics like that? The

fact that the Labor guys are

there shows you why Tony

Abbott's taking the stand

he's taking. This is an issue

that the Liberals hope will bite in those real Labor

Party heart lands around

greater Sydney. But they are

the areas where they just sort of came tantalisingly

close in a couple of cases

last election round and where

some really big upsets

happened at the skwals state election. NSW still has

almost a third of the House

of Representatives and that's why Tony Abbott's taking this

stand on this issue. The big

unknown I suppose is what the

electorate in those areas of

Western Sydney, southern Sydney and Queensland as

well, think about these pokie

reforms. The polls do show

people like the idea of some

reform in this area but the

clubs are really gunning for

these guys aren't they? They are directly targeting them

in these campaigns? I think

one of the biggest weapons

clubs have had in their

favour so far has been the

government has been very bad

or hasn't been very good I

should say at prosecuting the

argument. So there is enormous amount of confusion

about the policy they have

out there and some of that

you were picking up in your

interview with Anthony Ball, for example clubs say that

you have to have a licence to

punt when in fact if you want

to play a $1 per spin low intensity machine you will be fine to go and do that

without any licence to punt.

But it will still cost the

clubs to according to Anthony

Ball, cost the clubs to reduce those machines to a $1

spin. It would cost them to

dial it down but it wouldn't

cost as much as... You

wouldn't think to. All of the

reforms they have outlined

and some confusion came up

with the Greens recently where the Green came out with

the $1 per spin policy

because which is come plight

le bizarre because that is

the exist -- completely

bizarre because that is the

existing policy of Williams

to have a hybrid model.

Wilkie and the government

want the choice of big jack

pot machines as long as you

had a mandatory... The government has got to nail

down exactly what they are

putting on the table here I

think Tony Abbott is doing a

typical Tony Abbott here.

Don't under estimate the use

of the word nanny state in his speech last night. The

nanny state is a big theme, I

think a lot of people missing

it but there are all these little interferences going on

by this government that cut

across that blue collar

socially conservative vote

that Tony Abbott is in a

concerted pitch for and seems

to be having a lot of success

in getting. This is another

one of the issue that hits

the groupt in the heartland. He is saying if he

is Prime Minister he will be

resending the carbon tax,

mining tax, pokie law s he

will be doing a lot of

rolling back Or a double dissolution. On this issue

do you think it's a smart

tactic to say this far out we

will get rid of it. It does

keep it alive as a political

issue. Tactics are one thing,

another issue is can he

actually deliver on his

promise and in the short term

at least and you raised the

issue of a double dissolution election, he can't because it

is not as if after - if he

wins the next election it is

not as if the Senate is somehow mir ac usually going

to be in the hands of the

Liberals but he can say he

will resind it but the

question is how and when. This is different to the

carbon tax. Labor if they

lose in opposition standing

by the carbon tax because

they can't afford another

flip flop on this one but on

the poker machine reform I

don't know if they will be so

wedded to it after losing an election. They might also

take the view it is important

to tackle problem gambling. I can't believe what Laurie Ferguson was saying at the meeting that counselling doesn't work. Counselling

does work. A lot of what problem gamblers want is that

sort of intense help, you

know someone on the floor to

taken to someone face-to-face

if they have got a problem. Counselling is important. Sh And it will be part of this package I assume when we

see all the detail. Another trouble spot for the government. Immigration

detention there was a 'four

corners' story again this

week which expose ed how bad

things are in centres and

sadly a Sri Lankan refugee had two months to be found to

be a refugee but was still in

detention awaiting an ASIO

security clearance before he

could be released into the

community. It appears he took

his own life overnight. Chris

Bowen did confirm he had made

a couple of requests to be

released for certain things

including a Hindu religious

festival today but was turned down. We don't know whether

that was why he took his life

but the minister did confirm

he had been refused these

leave passes. There was a -

there are Hindu festival celebrations being under

taken or planned for

Villawood today which all participants are able to participate in. I understand

this individual did request

to leave the facility to

visit a friend, those requests are considered on a

case by case basis and that

was not approved for today.

It's a very sad story. But

there is going to be a lot more focus what's going on in

detention centres with more

boats clearly arriving since the failure of the Malaysian solution. More pressure on

the government? Yes and

there I lot of issues I

suppose 'four corners" only

had so long in that report to

look at some of the issues

and you know, there are issues around the fact

because of the decisions the

High Court has made in terms

of increasing avenues of

appeal for these people, that

is one of the very reasons

that they are in detention

for so long. Because the

appeals roll on, they keep

going to higher courts, they

remain in detention, and if

you get more boat people, more boat as arriving

obviously you will have a

situation where more people

will potentially have to be

released from detention into community detention or

alternative forms of

detention. So I think the

government actually has done

a lot to try and make

mandatory detention more

humane, but they are being

pulled in two directions

here. They are still to

spell out a lot of detail

around bridging visas how to get more people into the

community. But they should be

doing that sooner rather

later You really wonder how

long our appetite for mandatory detention will

really last. The polling

tends to suggest that we are

over it. It is one of those things I think governments

feel they have to do. I mean,

immigration has been a pretty contemptible bureaucracy at

times, we can't forget the

Cornelia Rau matter and a

similar case of an ind Indian student. That said, Sri Lanka

is a particularly difficult

thing to deal with because we

have had a really hard fought

war there going on for so

long with atrocities on both sides. And the security

clearance is widely held for

so long and you have people

who may have questionable backgrounds. And a particularly brutal war. We

have got to remember that. A

particularly brutal civil war

in Sri Lanka. Final issue,

inflation figures out today

pretty good. They fell more

than expected an interest

rate cut now looks likely

next week. Wayne Swan, he is

not supposed to tell the

Reserve Bank what to but

there wasn't much doubt what

his message was today. They

never tell the Reserve Bank

to put them up though, do

they. No, they don't. I think

his language was, the Reserve

Bank has room to move, we

have done our bit over to you

guys. It is like the old, yes

minister, line the railway

train ing objective but they

follow the guidelines set

down for them. You take a

punt on the Melbourne Cup

punt on an interest rate cut. Christian Kerr and Samantha

Maiden good to talk to you

both today. After the break

the Queen in Melbourne today.

What a reception she

received. We will bring you the latest on that.

The Queen is on her way to

Perth as we go to air this

afternoon after wrapping up

her visit to Melbourne and an

extraordinary turn out there in Federation Square and

across the city today for her

Majesty, Celina Edmonds our

royal reporter extraordinare

has been following the Queen

around Brisbane, Melbourne,

Canberra as well. It was a

beautiful reception for the Queen today, we will go

through the stages first was the visit to the hospital

there, the kid's hospital.

And a packed crowd there and

the Queen clearly enjoyed the

moment. She did indeed. It

was the first sign this was

going to be quite an

extraordinary visit when we

saw the crowd outside the new

Royal's children's hospital

to greet her Majesty. The

Queen looked radiant today, I

think it was in part the

outfit but the general excitement of the occasion in

Melbourne. Melbourne's

buzzing anyway with the spring racing carnival but

the Queen added to that

feeling there is something

very special going on here at

the moment. And the pictures of the Queen inside this new

hospital, which looks amaze ing complete with aquariums

and playgrounds and the like,

to try and distract obviously

the children from their

obvious problems and

illnesses that they are going through as a result of being

in hospital, the Queen met

patients past and prend,

Trishna and Krishna the

separated twins from Bangladesh. That was a

beautiful moment. 102 years

old. Extraordinary she was

there back in 1963 when the

Queen opened the first hospital, Dame Elizabeth

Murdoch. How wonderful they

shared a moment. It was only

a brief moment because it was

a four hour visit but the

Queen extraordinary at that

hospital and taking time

again with everyone and such

a reception from some of the

4 this, staff that are at

that -- 4,000 staff at that

hospital. It was a great

welcome and a great start to

the four hour trip. But the

thing that got me was the Federation Square reception

which followed. The turnout

there was extraordinary. I

have been amazed at the

turnout that we have seen

around the country now for

the Queen, and the euphoria

you see amongst the crowd.

You could hear skwooet God

save the Queen' breaking out

at one stage. That's right

and if viewers who did catch

some of the coverage, John

Hamilton the veteran journalist from 'The Herald

Sun' he retires this Friday

he was staggered at the 'God

save the Queen' breaking out

in the crowd spontaneously,

they said there was no time for our national anthem or

the royal anthem, there it

was in the crowd, there were

countless children along that

red car pet. The ladies in waiting had their work cut

out for them today. The

Queen kept barrelling bunches

of flowers. There were

countless flower s? Bunches

much flowers you can see them

weighed down by them. They

must have had barrow loads of

flowers at the end of the day

but I noticed one point after

quite a while out there in

the sun the minders and even

Prince Phillip were nudging

the Queen along trying to

hurry her up but she was

having none of that. Yes you

saw the Duke of Edinburgh come to her shoulder and briefly whisper something in

her ear, probably "Come on we

have got to get on this tram"

but the Queen would not be

hurried and who would blame

her when you have got

estimates of more than

100,000 people cramming in

around this fed ration

square, people saying that it

was bigger than the AFL

parade. Who would blame her?

This is her moment to shine

and shine she did. And when

you look at these picture s

it is too bold to say this is

her last visit to Australia, what a reception. She will

want to come back. Snsh I think are you right and I

think it's fair to say

Republicans watching those sort of pictures today and

some of the pictures we have

seen elsewhere over the

course of this week will be

realising that any hopes they might have of Australia

returning to this issue

quickly of becoming a

Republic fore bet about it.

There is a lot of love for this -- for get about it.

There is a lot of love for

the Queen. There came the

tram ride, talk us through

that? This was a wonderful moment and you can imagine

these pictures being seen

right around the world with the Queen and the Duke of

Edinburgh boarding this tram

especially refurb ished 31

years old Z class tram. It is

now the royal tram and I dare

say Premier Ted Baillieu will

have lobbying from people, it is supposed to be decorated

as such, the royal tram for a

year, my tip is it will go on

a lot longer, one of the

signs to me this was quite

extraordinary was when Drimar

Tincovich the CEO from Australians constitutional

mon arky sent me a text

saying this is staggering, if

they think it is staggering

the turnout it must be

because the crowd followed

that tram along the princess

bridge and the workmen in the

background stopped work to

waive to her Majesty and

Prince Phillip. Everyone

seems to be in Federation

Square and along St Kilda

Road as the Queen's tram made

its way to Government House

for the reception. What a

success it was. Queensland

set the bar high, Melbourne

has raised it even further,

now it's on to Perth, and

that great Aussie barbeque is

set to be one hell of an

event. I was going to ask

you that, we are yet to see

what happens in Perth and

that great Aussie barbeque

will have a huge crowd I'm

sure, but to put you on the

spot do you think the royal

fever has bitten the hardest

in Melbourne so far?

Definitely. This was the

reception to outshine all receptions. And I think you

could tell that by the

response of the Queen and the

royal party. The Duke of

Edinburgh also very busy

greeting people as well. The

ladies in waiting, everyone

having that sense that this

was extraordinary. And when

people are comparing it and

saying it outdoes Oprah which

of course was a huge

celebritisensation here in

Melbourne, also also talking

about it outdoing AFL parades

you do know something quite

amazing has occurred in terms

of the sheer numbers of

people. I spoke to one lady

that has sat on a train from

Sydney for more than 12 hours

with her 3-year-old child

just to come here to catch a

glimpse. It wasn't just Melbournians, they were

scattered from far and wide,

right around Victoria,

interstate as well. People

taking this chance. And

wanting to know where they

could stand. Where they could

line the red carpet. How

could they get to meet the

Queen. Would their child be

able to present flowers

asking journalists, and we are trying to give them

advice, it really was amazing

and she left here and I think the Premier Anna Bligh

couldn't wipe the smile off

her face on Monday, and you

would have to say Premier Ted

Baillieu, he won't forget

this as long as he lives. Absolutely. Celina Edmonds,

wonderful coverage from you

today as well. Thanks for joining us this

afternoon. Thanks so much David We will have full

coverage of the Queen's visit

to Perth for the Commonwealth

Heads of Government Meeting.

Stay with us right here on

Sky News. After the break the very latest news. --

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