Monday, 28 February 2011
Questions without Notice
I thank the Deputy Leader of the Opposition for her question. It enables me to say that the Liberal Party are the party of the past—mired in it as they are—whilst we talk about the future. It is not surprising they gave this question to the Deputy Leader of the Opposition because, whenever I have a casual word with one of her backbench colleagues, they say she is history. So it is no surprise that they have given her the question that is about history because they all know she is history.
I have always believed that climate change is real, that it is caused by human induced activity, that in order to cut carbon pollution we need to price carbon and that the most efficient way of doing that is through a market based mechanism—and through the carbon pricing mechanism I announced last week we will do precisely that. During the time I have had those beliefs day after day, hour after hour, week after week, month after month, there has been the Leader of the Opposition. He accepts the science? No. It is ‘absolute crap’. He believes in pricing carbon? No, he does not believe in pricing carbon. Yes, he believes in pricing carbon? No, he does not believe in pricing carbon. The only thing the Leader of the Opposition has ever stood for in this debate is what he believes to be the political interests of the Liberal Party. That is not good enough for someone who contends to be Prime Minister in this country. That is not good enough for someone with the responsibility of national leadership on their shoulders.
What Australians send us here to do is to take charge of the issues that are most important to this country’s future. I am doing that job. The government is doing that job. The Leader of the Opposition is incapable of doing it and he shows it day after day.