Not everything that happens in Parliament makes it through on the media. So Manager of Opposition Business Tony Burke brings you the five best and worst moments of the first parliamentary sitting week of 2014.
1. Both Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and Prime Minister Abbott paid tribute to late Corporal Cameron Baird, who will be posthumously awarded Australia’s 100th Victoria Cross next week.
If you’re on an iPhone, check out Bill’s speech at his Facebook page: www.facebook.com/BillShorten
2. On Thursday, Labor took the fight to the Government calling on them to come up with a jobs plan, after unemployment topped 6 per cent – the highest level in a decade.
3. The 2014 Closing the Gap report was released, with both sides of politics reaffirming their support for closing the gap on indigenous disadvantage.
4. This week also marked the sixth anniversary of the historic apology to Indigenous Australians.
5. It’s rare for MPs to vote with the other side, but Liberal Nickolas Varvaris did just that when he found himself sitting with Labor during a division. Not sure which column to put this one in, but given he voted with us, I’m putting it in the ‘best’.
Check out the full story over at the SMH, just search for Nickolas Varvaris.
1. The week started with Toyota workers finding out their jobs would go in 2017, sadly signalling the end of the Australian car manufacturing industry.
2. Despite blaming workers for job losses, the Government ran out of legislation to debate in the House on Wednesday, and still they voted to stop Labor talking about jobs.
3. New data out on Thursday showed one full-time job has been lost every three minutes while Tony Abbott has been Prime Minister.
4. Assistant Health Minister Fiona Nash is under fire for misleading the Senate over conflicts of interest involving a health labeling website and the junk food industry.
5. Finally, Christopher Pyne, the man who has been disciplined the most in the 112 years of Australian parliamentary history, accused me of “ungentlemanly” behaviour. Although I actually only got offended when he claimed I was older than him.