Misleading Labor campaign material has demonstrated how ineffective for the Murray SA Labor has been at both state and federal levels, Coalition Murray-Darling Basin spokesman Simon Birmingham said today.
The postcard* distributed in the state electorate of Port Adelaide by the Labor Party for its by-election campaign claims that “Jay Weatherill’s Labor Party wants a better deal for the Murray” and “Only Labor will take the fight to Canberra to save the Murray”.
“Jay Weatherill seems to think he can fool people into forgetting it is actually Labor in government in Canberra,” Senator Birmingham said today.
“Does Premier Weatherill’s attack on Canberra and the draft Murray-Darling Basin Plan mean that he believes Julia Gillard is failing South Australia? If so, then he should say so plainly rather than engaging in political smoke and mirrors tricks.
“If Labor wants to see people make an impact in Canberra then they should ask what Penny Wong, Mark Butler, Don Farrell or any of South Australia’s federal Labor MPs think of the draft Murray-Darling Plan, because the silence coming from SA Labor’s representatives in Canberra has been deafening.
“Even the pictures on this campaign flyer are downright misleading – the SA picture shows the Murray at the height of drought in 2008, but there’s no mention that the picture of an overflowing Hume Dam in NSW was taken two years later after flooding rainfalls in 2010 that saw even the SA end of the Murray look much healthier.
“Like the ‘us and them’ rhetoric associated with his threatened High Court challenge, this dodgy imagery is another example of the rampant parochialism from Jay Weatherill that risks derailing Murray reform.
“Rather than continuing the petty politicking and parochialism that has plagued the Murray for more than 100 years we should be backing robust science and an independent national authority to deliver a better plan to manage the Murray into the future.”