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Wednesday, 30 May 2012
Page: 6286

Enterprise Migration Agreements


Mrs MIRABELLA (Indi) (14:40): My question is to the Prime Minister. I refer the Prime Minister to her statement on Monday that she supports the Roy Hill enterprise migration agreement to import 1,700 overseas workers. Given this claim, why did she tell union leaders on Friday that she was 'furious' about the announcement by her immigration minister?


Ms GILLARD (LalorPrime Minister) (14:40): To the member for Indi: I think I answered a question either identical to or very similar to this earlier in the week. I am passionate about Australian jobs, and I do not care who hears it. I am passionate about Australian jobs. I have conversations about what we can do to support Australian jobs frequently with my ministerial colleagues, with the trade union movement and with employers around the nation. This is a government with a proud track record—

Mr Abbott: Madame Deputy Speaker, I rise on a point of order. It was a very specific question: why did she tell union leaders she was 'furious' with the agreement she now says she supports?

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Ms AE Burke ): The Leader of the Opposition has made his point of order. He will resume his seat. The Prime Minister has only just begun her answer. The Prime Minister has the call.

Ms GILLARD: As I was saying, I am passionate about the creation of Australian jobs, so, whether it is a discussion with union leaders last Friday or with business people or with my ministerial colleagues or my caucus colleagues, what is always first and foremost for this government is the creation of Australian jobs. We have a proud track record of creating Australian jobs, and we will continue that record of creating Australian jobs. I will always in all circumstances look to see what more we can do to create Australian jobs. We will keep working with the resources sector, with businesses around the nation and with the trade union movement to create Australian jobs, and I am happy to share that passion with this House.





Mr ABBOTT (WarringahLeader of the Opposition) (14:42): Madam Deputy Speaker, this is a supplementary question to the Prime Minister arising from what she has just told us. Why did she tell union leaders last Friday that she was 'furious' about the Roy Hill agreement which she now claims she supports? She should answer that question and stop being shifty and evasive with this House.

Mr Albanese: Got any more violent language terms you want to use, mate?

Opposition members interjecting

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Ms AE Burke ): Order! The Leader of the House has the call.

Mr Albanese: Madam Deputy Speaker, clearly that question was out of order. It was not a supplementary question; it was just rhetoric from this Leader of the Opposition yet again.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The first part of the question was in order; the last part was not. The Prime Minister has the call.






Ms GILLARD (LalorPrime Minister) (14:42): I say to the Leader of the Opposition that I do not recall him being in any meeting that I was in last Friday—and he would never be there, because the meetings I have are about Australian jobs and he does not care about Australian jobs. When we were meeting about the global financial crisis, there was the opposition leader sleeping off a big night out. That is where he was. He is not frequently in meetings about jobs.

Mr Abbott: Madam Deputy Speaker, it was a very simple question: why did she tell union leaders that she was 'furious' about the agreement if she supports it? She should tell the truth to this parliament.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER ( Ms AE Burke ): The Leader of the Opposition has made his point of order.

Government members interjecting

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: The Leader of the Opposition will withdraw the last part of that statement.

Mr Abbott: I withdraw.

Ms GILLARD: If the Leader of the Opposition is back in control of himself, as I was saying, meetings that I had on Friday were about—

Opposition members interjecting

Mr Pyne: Madam Deputy Speaker, that should be withdrawn.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER: I will ask the Prime Minister to withdraw and to come to the answer.

Ms GILLARD: I withdraw. The meetings that I had on Friday—as are many meetings I have—were about Australian jobs. The Leader of the Opposition has never been in one of them so he will never be an eyewitness to what happens in them, because there will never be a time that he spends one moment of his life worried about Australian jobs. All he ever worries about is destructive negativity and fear campaigns. Today, like on most days, we can see it written all over his face.