The Coalition’s Murray-Darling Basin spokesman has today indicated he is willing to debate his Labor counterpart any time and anywhere on the future of the Murray Darling Basin.
Senator Simon Birmingham was today responding to Penny Wong’s desperate attempt to divert attention from her Government’s inaction:
“… I am laying down a challenge to Barnaby Joyce: Barnaby, release your water policy and come here to Adelaide and debate me on water.”
Penny Wong, media conference, 4 August 2010
“Penny Wong’s challenge to Senator Joyce, consistent with Labor’s approach to water policy more generally, is nothing but a shallow stunt,” Senator Birmingham said today.
“Senator Wong seems to be suggesting this debate is necessary because we haven’t formally released our Coalition policy document, when Labor are yet to release theirs – surely the height of hypocrisy.
“Quite why Senator Joyce is supposed to come to Senator Wong and not the other way around is not clear, whereas the transparent nature of her stunt is plain for all to see.
“Nevertheless, I welcome Senator Wong’s preparedness to front up and try to explain why her Government has never delivered promised water saving infrastructure spending and why her ineptitude has led to delays in the draft Basin Plan being released.
“As the Coalition’s spokesman on the Murray Darling Basin, and as a fellow Senator for South Australia, I look forward to hearing Senator Wong’s attempts to justify her three years of missed opportunities.”