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Monday, 21 May 2018
Page: 3882


Mr HOWARTH (Petrie) (11:48): I thank the member for Shortland for that contribution, although I don't agree with him sticking up for the CFMEU, given John Setka's record of being charged 59 times for different offences, including 15 counts of assaulting five different police officers. This is the same CFMEU leader who has done jail time, and the member for Shortland comes in here and wants to stick up for him and the CFMEU. Give me a break!

I rise today to speak in support of jobs, affordable electricity and freedom of choice—three core government responsibilities that Labor seem vehemently opposed to—and in support of this private member's bill. The member for Dawson moved that this House recognise:

that:

(1) the Australian Labor Party has abandoned workers in Queensland—

and indeed they have—

to chase Green votes in Victoria.

He moved that the House recognise that the opposition leader—

tells workers in Queensland he is pro coal—

and then in Victoria when he's down there campaigning in Batman says that he's against it and that he has—

promised green activist Geoff Cousins that he would tear up the approvals for—

coalworkers at the Carmichael mine. Mind you, he did that after a free trip worth $17,000 to the Great Barrier Reef for the Leader of the Opposition. The opening up of the Galilee Basin, according to the member for Dawson:

… has the potential to create over 16,000 jobs in Queensland;

(4) the Australian Labor Party is gambling with the integrity of Australia and has created a sovereign risk; and

(5)Australia should utilise its natural resources and encourage investment in our mining sector to create much needed jobs for regional areas.

When it comes to jobs, the coalition has a strong record. Jobs and growth is what we took to the people at the last election, and we have delivered. We have continued to deliver. We have delivered the strongest ever recorded jobs growth, of more than 1,000 new jobs a day—that is some 415,000 in the last 12 months. You can't lie with statistics. These figures, of course, are great news for every Australian, including the people in Townsville and the people in Petrie, and including all Australians who want the dignity of a job. They are also great news for the economic strength of our nation.

The Turnbull coalition government's idea of free enterprise reward for effort and government living within its means has resulted in over one million new jobs since 2013. This is very important. The members opposite talk about lower taxes. We 100 per cent support lower taxes. We support $140 million in lower taxes for individuals. We support another $37 million in lower taxes for businesses because statistics show that, since we've done that for businesses up to $50 million, 415,000 jobs have been created, 75 per cent of which are full-time. We don't support the $200 billion in new taxes that the opposition leader and the Labor Party want to impose on Australians in the next 10 years—that is $20 billion a year—which will affect a lot of people. We don't support that.

Labor have no plans for jobs and growth. All they know how to do is spend and tax and bind up everything in red and green tape, crippling small and family businesses and our farmers. In fact, Labor's ideas of what is fair and equal mean they put environmental ideology before people, control before freedom, and, as we've seen from the member for Shortland, unions before jobs, all of which result in division, debt and economic destruction. Furthermore, Labor are anti coal. They have sacrificed Australia's power bills at the altar of environmentalism. Today, the shadow minister, the assistant minister to the shadow Treasurer, the member for Whitlam, called people who support coal 'coal dinosaurs'. These are the people that the member for Shortland says that is sticking up for.

I do support the members opposite. I note, too, that the Queensland government is not only abandoning workers in coal but also abandoning farmers through the draconian new laws that it has just put in. Not only is Labor blocking a job-creating mine but it is attacking our farmers in Queensland, which is shameful as well. The member for Herbert should remember that the Palaszczuk government is in power up there and has done nothing for jobs. (Time expired)