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Old jellyback does it again!



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Ύ9

Peter Reith

DEPUTY LEADER of the OPPOSITION PRESS RELEASE SHADOW TREASURER

OLD JELLYBACK DOES IT AGAIN!

The Prime Minister, Mr Hawke, has clearly indicated yet again that he no longer has the authority to lead Australia.

In failing to sack Employment, Training and Education Minister, John Dawkins, Mr Hawke has shown he can't even stamp authority on his own cabinet, let alone the nation.

The acidic criticism of the Prime Minister in the Herald-Sun over the weekend from Mr Dawkins was virtually inviting the Prime Minister to sack him.

The suggestion by Mr Dawkins that his comments on a lack of leadership at the ALP conference were really aimed at the factional leaders, and NOT Mr Hawke, is laughable.

Mr Dawkins referred specifically to the Prime Minister's keynote address to the conference.

It was as plain as day.

And for the Prime Minister to accept this pseudo explanation shows how unwilling, and indeed unable, he is to exercise authority over his Government.

Bob Hawke didn't sack John Dawkins because he knows he can't afford to have another loose cannon rolling around on the back bench.

"Old jellyback" just hasn't got the guts to back his words with action.

Mr Dawkins has been critical of Government policy five times in the last year.

In April, when he questioned the floating exchange rate, the Employment Minister was rebuked by the Cabinet, and specifically warned by the Prime Minister that one more public outburst would result in his sacking.

Yet, when the hour for action arrives, all Mr Hawke can muster the courage for is a "yarn", and even then he had to have his new Left Wing deputy, Brian Howe, in there holding his hand.

Bob Hawke no longer has the guts for the country's top job.

COMMONWEALTH PA R L IA M EN TA R Y L IB R A R Y ivlICAH

In recent weeks, we have seen a man masquerading as Prime Minister, a man who is more intent on soliciting support in shopping centres than in debating the issues that are crucial for this country's future.

In keeping with the Prime Minister's penchant for cross-word puzzles at the ALP conference we must ask: what's a seven letter word to describe a Prime Minister who tells the Parliament that he'll publicly express his views on uranium if

a debate arises and then sits mute?

Gutless.

What's a seven letter word to describe a Prime Minister who hasn't even got the decency to apologise for lying to the electorate?

Gutless.

What's a seven letter word to describe a Prime Minister who can't muster the courage to sack a senior minister who publicly dismissed him as a "wimp"?

Gutless.

2 July 1991 Melbourne

Contact: David Turnbull (06) 2774277 D89/91