Labor’s Home Affairs spokeswoman Kristina Keneally said the revelations “go to the heart of [Mr] Dutton’s mismanagement of his department and his neglect of his ministerial responsibilities”.
“Mr Dutton stood before the media and declared there were no budget cuts to his department the day after he had signed off on measures to recoup a $300 million budget black hole that had happened on his watch,” Senator Keneally said.
“How wide and deep would have Mr Dutton been willing to slash his department’s budget if these measures … had not been exposed in the media?”
Senator Keneally said the measures would have weakened Australia’s border protection.
It was rubber stamp time in Canberra, with the Prime Minister pouring a torrent of sparkly gold stars on his head boys and girl for their efforts thus far. “I think some are getting A’s and some are getting A-pluses,” the proud PM beamed as he handed out report cards. He couldn’t find a single one who “can do better” in a class of 19 cabinet ministers.Mr Abbott didn’t bring up the unfortunate expulsions of two boys: Cory Bernardi, for distracting the class by thinking way too much about gay people, polygamy and bestiality; and one-time Assistant Treasurer Arthur Sinodinos, for not thinking nearly hard enough about some exam questions set by the Independent Commission Against Corruption.
We don’t know whether Joe Hockey was an A or an A+ for his sterling work behind the bike sheds, holding the poorer kiddies by the ankles and shaking them up and down until their lunch money fell out.
George Orwellian Brandis was almost certainly an A++ with extra gold stars for his performance in the debating finals – on the topic “That people do have a right to be bigots, you know” – and his introduction to student council of legislation making it legal for the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation prefects to torture anyone they caught hanging around looking a bit suss.
Eric Abetz, gets some sort of medal for his science report on the links between abortion and breast cancer. Links that had previously escaped the entire medical profession.There surely is no justice if Scott Morrison, the head boy in charge of detention, doesn’t get called up on parade for special commendation after only losing one refugee to a machete attack and another to septicaemia.
Let’s not forget the PM himself, who early on in the school year demonstrated such a cheeky inventiveness with the guidelines for excursions that we somehow paid for his trips away even when nobody could quite work out what any of the travel had to do with his job.
To which he replied trying to change the conversation