Parliament House Doorstop

08 February 2024


This is an important day for the Parliament. The visit of the PNG Prime Minister James Marape, and his address to a joint sitting in the parliament is a momentous day in this year's parliamentary calendar. It's a sign of how close the relationship is, and it shows the work that the Government has been doing on building the relationship with Papua New Guinea, our closest neighbour. Labor Prime Minister Anthony Albanese addressed a joint sitting of the Papua New Guinea Parliament last year. He was the first foreign leader to do that, it was a great honour. I know that he saw that as a great honour. And we're absolutely delighted to have James Marape and his senior leadership team here in Canberra, to do the joint sitting of Parliament, but also to continue discussions between Australia and Papua New Guinea about how we deepen this relationship.


It has been a good week for the Government in the Parliament. I am really pleased with the progress that we are making. Today in the Senate, the Closing the Loopholes legislation will make its way through the Senate and that will deliver very good outcomes for Australian workers and Australian business. It will mean that stronger rights are there for casual workers to make sure that we no longer have this permanent casual issue where workers are unable to get mortgages, unable to make progress in their own lives because their artificial casual status prevents them from being able to get a mortgage or unable to get a loan. It means the gig workers will be treated with decency and respect and will be able to lift safety standards for gig workers. And it means that ordinary people will have, ordinary Australians will have a right to disconnect in the workplace.  The tax legislation was introduced in the Parliament yesterday. That legislation means that every single Australian worker will get a tax cut. Many of them, 85% of them, much more tax cuts than they were going to get under the previous government's tax package. It is the right decision made at the right time for the right reasons. And it's going to deliver real benefits to ordinary Australian households.


I have to say while I'm here, Peter Dutton's colleagues earlier in the week on the ABC calling him a thug. His behaviour on the 7:30 Report last night, showed that aspect of his character was in full display. It was an angry, negative and thuggish approach to been asked serious questions by a serious journalist. The approach of people in this place, politicians, shouldn't be to get angry and negative when they're put under pressure in a serious political interview, it should be to answer the questions. That's what Australians expect. You know, it's not you don't always get asked easy questions by journalists. But you should treat them with respect. You should treat the public with respect. And we saw what an angry negative character Mr. Dutton is, when he's put under some pressure. I understand he's under some pressure. They campaign against the tax cuts, at the same time, as they're voting for them. It's very difficult for most Australians to understand, but it's his job as the Opposition Leader to explain their position to the Australian people. I understand he's going to have great difficulty doing that. But lashing out at ordinary journalists is not the right way to do it.