Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Current HansardDownload Current Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Wednesday, 9 November 2016
Page: 3373


Mr BROAD (Mallee) (15:59): I happen to be a bit of a Monty Python fan, and there is a great Life of Brian scene that reminds me of the member for Hunter being the great John Cleese:

What have the Romans ever done for us?

The aqueduct.

Oh, yes, sanitation …

And the roads …

Irrigation … medicine … education … health.

… but apart from better sanitation and medicine and education and irrigation and public health and roads and a freshwater system and baths and public order, what have the Romans done for us?

And we have the member for Hunter, standing here being the John Cleese of the Australian parliament: 'What have the Nationals ever done for us?'

The people I represent have really, really high bulldust radars, and they can spot things. When they try to remember what the Labor Party has ever done for them: 'Oh, that is right, the carbon tax surcharge on livestock exports; the shut down of the irrigation blocks'—and I was pleased that the member for Hunter actually came to the area and saw some of those irrigation blocks that are getting turned back into productivity as opposed to getting shut down—'and procrastination on road funding and rail funding.' They say, 'I remember what they did for us: they banned live exports and they shut down confidence in our export markets.' That is what they say when trying to remember what Labor has ever done for them. But they remember what the Nationals have done for them. There is a good reason, my friends, that every sitting National Party member won their seat in the last election and we gained some. It is because the people of Australia who had the opportunity—and it is a very unique opportunity, I might say—to vote National have very high bulldust radars. They remember.

This MPI gives me a great opportunity to run through just what the Nationals have done in the electorate of Mallee: $645 million in three years. Take the Murray Basin Rail Project, with $220 million of federal money to standardise the rails. This is the biggest investment federally in rail in the state of Victoria in the history of Victoria, delivered by the National Party. There was $103 million to modernise our irrigation scheme. The largest irrigation upgrade has now been completed on budget and on time—delivered by who? Oh, that is right: this government. Then there is the Western Highway and another $10 million into roads, as opposed to the Labor Party in Victoria, which does not fix a road anymore. Instead of fixing a road, they put up a sign. They put up a sign that says 'Go slower'. We fix the road; they put up a sign. We have just announced $876,000 for the Swan Hill Livestock Exchange, because we believe in the red meat industry.

Let's talk about health. There is $1 million for the oncology unit. People were driving down the road from Horsham to have chemotherapy—and had to stop and throw up on the edge of the road—but we have now delivered $1 million for the oncology unit and that is getting built. There is $2 million for the Longerenong College, to invest in young people in agriculture. There is $10 million for the Mildura runway upgrade. Yes, you can actually fly to Mildura. I know that people over here are passionate about regional Australia—and that is great. Do you know why we are passionate? It is because we have got some great food and we have got some great restaurants. I would like you to come and have a look. Everything you have said here today is probably what you read on the internet and you have not actually come to look. I would like to know how many people have actually come out to regional Australia. I am pleased that the member for Hunter came. He had a cultural experience, talking to some very particular growers in my electorate.

Mr Fitzgibbon: They didn't say nice things about you.

Mr BROAD: They wouldn't, but they are good fellows, mate. It was good that you came. How did you get there? You flew. Did you know that you can fly to the electorate of Mallee? There are 140 commercial flights each week, because the place is going ahead. There is $10 million for the Grampians Peaks Trail, so people can have a walk around. A few weeks ago we turned on 11 NBN towers around the outskirts of Mildura. There is $1.75 million for the Stawell dark matter laboratory. It is all happening, and it is because this government is delivering for regional Australia. Come out and have a look. You might actually learn something. I am pleased the member for Hunter came to the area—but I hope that you will not just be the John Cleese of the Australian parliament.