Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull have outlined why they make the better PM. Picture: AAP/Lukas Coch
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull have outlined why they make the better PM. Picture: AAP/Lukas Coch

Stirring words before battle for Longman

THE high stakes battle for Longman in the July 28 by-elections has captured the attention of both sides of politics and shows how important Queensland will be at the next federal election.

Malcolm Turnbull delivered a speech in Brisbane yesterday and today, Bill Shorten will reveal a health pledge on Bribie Island.

News Queensland asked them to tell readers why they would be the better leader for Queensland.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull have outlined why they make the better PM. Picture: AAP/Lukas Coch
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull have outlined why they make the better PM. Picture: AAP/Lukas Coch

 

BILL SHORTEN:

I have held seven public town hall meetings in Queensland this year. Everywhere I go across the state, people tell me they feel like the economy isn't working for them.

They are worried that the opportunities they had growing up won't be there for their kids in the future.

My wife Chloe and I want what every parent wants - a bright future for our kids. The Queenslanders I meet are no different to us.

I've spent my whole life fighting for better pay and conditions for workers, and I understand the concerns people have - particularly when we see jobs disappearing, the overuse of overseas worker visas and increasing casualisation.

But I'm absolutely confident that with the right plan, a bright future lies ahead for Queensland's economy.

That's why I'm asking for your vote to be prime minister - because I want to build an economy that delivers a fair go for all Queenslanders, not just the top end of town.

My plan for a fair go for Queensland is all about jobs, skills and essential services like schools and hospitals - because I believe that the economy does well when all Queenslanders are doing well.

Labor will deliver infrastructure projects across the state - like Cross River Rail and upgrades to the M1, as well as extending the Bruce Highway to Cairns Airport, stage two of the Mackay Ring Road, and widening the Townsville port.

These all create new jobs for Queenslanders, and more apprenticeships for young people looking to learn a trade.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten says he understands the concerns people have. Picture: AAP/Grant Wells
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten says he understands the concerns people have. Picture: AAP/Grant Wells

More than 30,000 apprenticeships in the state have been lost under the LNP government. I've got a plan to reverse the cuts by rebuilding TAFEs and making it compulsory to employ apprentices on major projects with government funding.

I got my passion for education from my mum. She was a teacher, and she sacrificed a lot so my brother and I could get the best possible start in life.

You can't have a plan for the economy without a plan for education. To make this state a jobs powerhouse, we need to make it an education powerhouse too. But how can our kids get the jobs of the future if we're not teaching them the skills they need when they're at school?

I'll reverse the LNP's
$17 billion cut to schools, because I think that's more important than giving
$17 billion to the big banks.

And - like any other dad - the most important thing to me is the health of my family. I know how important our public hospitals are - that's why I'll reverse the LNP's cuts and reduce waiting times.

I can afford these priorities because unlike Mr Turnbull, I'm not going to give another tax handout to the top end of town.

Bill Shorten and Malcolm Turnbull are battling it out for Queensland votes.
Bill Shorten and Malcolm Turnbull are battling it out for Queensland votes.

MALCOLM TURNBULL:

The Government is building a strong economy for Queensland and the nation.

A strong economy makes everything possible.

It means we can guarantee the essential services that Queenslanders deserve, while balancing the Budget and paying down the debt.

It means we can afford to invest a record amount on hospitals and schools, guarantee Medicare, make medication more affordable, and help with childcare costs.

A strong economy means that businesses have the confidence to invest and create jobs, and here in Queensland more than 100,000 new jobs were created in 2017.

And a strong economy allows us to provide tax relief so that Queensland families keep more of the money they earn. Thanks to the stronger economy, enabled and encouraged by our economic plan, we are able to pay for the vital road projects to ensure Queenslanders get home sooner and safer - from the M1, to the Bruce Highway, to the far north.

This year's Budget locked in an additional $3.3 billion for continued upgrades to the Bruce Highway. We're investing $1 billion so the M1 doesn't become a permanent carpark, with upgrades between Varsity Lakes and Tugun, and Eight Mile Plains and Daisy Hill. We've put $300 million towards the Brisbane Metro and just last week, I announced our $20 million upgrade for the Bribie Island Rd.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull making an address at the Queensland Media Club at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on Wednesday. Picture: AAP/Glenn Hunt
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull making an address at the Queensland Media Club at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on Wednesday. Picture: AAP/Glenn Hunt

I am optimistic about Queensland's future and the aspiration of Queenslanders to succeed. There is no doubt Bill Shorten will continue droning on with his usual negativity and grievances.

He'll continue to make things up about cuts to hospitals and schools, and he'll be complaining that the Government shouldn't be providing tax relief to hardworking family businesses.

Whatever you do, don't believe Labor's lies. Here are the facts, laid out in the Budget:

In Labor's last full year in office, Commonwealth funding for Queensland's schools was $2.77 billion. For 2017/18 it was $3.93 billion - an increase of 41.8 per cent. And in the years ahead - we are pumping an extra $23 billion into Aussie schools.

We are also rolling out a new hospitals agreement with the states that offers an increase of $30 billion over the next five years, including an extra $7.49 billion for Queensland hospitals. In Labor's last full year in office, Commonwealth funding for Queensland's public hospitals was $2.67 billion. For 2017-18, it was $4.86 billion - an increase of 82 per cent.

Make no mistake - a vote for Susan Lamb in the upcoming Longman by-election is a vote for Bill Shorten. Australia can't afford to take that risk.

Our stronger economy is also ensuring you keep more of the money you earn.

And most importantly, only with a stronger economy can you guarantee the essential services on which Queenslanders rely.

 



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