Pushed on whether he continues to think an Indigenous voice to parliament was a “third chamber”, something Barnaby Joyce echoed at the time and has since retracted, Dutton again dodges the question:
I don’t see what the government is proposing. During the campaign I’m happy to support anything that supports reconciliation that does it sensibly, but I don’t – as Linda Burney herself has pointed out, she having discussions with Anthony Albanese to decide what it is they are putting forward.
I think we are 20 steps ahead of what the opposition and other parties will do until the government knows what it is doing.
He is just wanted to note that most of his answer is about Labor not his position.
Updated at 19.44 EDT
Next, Dutton was pressed on his position on an Indigenous voice to parliament, to which he gave an answer laced with references to “practical outcomes” and domestic violence.
While refusing to provide clarity on his position, Dutton alleges that the government is not clear on what it wants to do and that we are “20 steps ahead”:
I made very clear this the one is that the government itself doesn’t have the detail yet, and so we want to see that detail, and lots of questions will come from that.
I don’t think the public understands yet what the government is proposing. So let’s see all of that detail, and we will not decide until we see it, which is a good position. But the action I want to see now is not a reflection of failure on the Morrison government or Gillard government or Howard government, is a collective failure of all of us.
I want to see practical outcomes, the closing of the gap, and a massive reduction in the violence against women and children, particularly the sexual violence against children in Aboriginal communities.
I don’t want to see little kids in our country’s Indigenous communities in 2022 locking themselves in shipping containers to get through the night to save themselves from being sexually assaulted, and that is what is happening. I want to see that practical effort … I know that Anthony Albanese has outlined his four priorities so far. It doesn’t include this priority, and I encourage him to put it at the top of the list.
It should be noted that these are general, non-specific, and sensational allegations, and our reporting of Dutton’s comments should not be taken as any more than an attempt to reflect his remarks accurately.
There is a long history on both sides of politics of weaponizing allegations of child sexual assault against Aboriginal communities.
Updated at 19.55 EDT
Dutton is being grilled (again) on where he got information that the United States could provide two nuclear submarines to Australia by the end of the decade.
Speers presses Dutton on whether he used classified information to make that point, eventually gleaning from the opposition leader that it was a “commonsense conclusion”.
Dutton: Well, based on my judgment of what I thought was possible for our country, I visited the electric boat company in Connecticut. I had spoken with them there. I had looked at what we could do here domestically. I worry that …
Speers: The question is whether you use classified to make this point. You said you haven’t.
Dutton: No, not at all.
Speers: Where is this publicly available information that they can provide two nuclear subs by the decade’s end?
Dutton: David, in the article I published in the Australian, I made it clear that I think this government is trying to crab-walk away from the Aukus deal. I don’t think them ever truly are in their hearts …
Speers: That’s not the question I asked. My question was, where did you get this information that is not classified that the US can provide two nuclear submarines by the end of the decade in Australia?
Dutton: David, I looked at the information I had spoken about publicly. I detailed that in my article in the Australian because I wanted to call out the government and stop them from making a terrible mistake by walking away.
Updated at 19.44 EDT
Dutton avoided the question if he would support Labor’s new renewable target.
Speers: Do you support the new target?
Dutton: Well, we will see what the Labor party puts forward.
Speers: Well, they have. They are signed up. Do you support it?
Dutton: Well, let’s see what they put forward because they’ve got to negotiate with the Greens to get there, David, so this echoes Julia Gillard and …
Speers: Well … they’ve now signed up to a target. Do you support it?
Dutton: Our position is what we took to the election. We are not supporting legislation, and we have been clear about that.
Speers: I know you are not supporting the legislation, but the target is 43% by 2030 – what’s your view?
Dutton: Our view is that we will end up – people haven’t put a figure on it – but would suspect we will end up with something like 35%. We had a target of 26-28%. In terms of our mark, we will announce that before the next election.
And on and on it went.
Updated at 19.36 EDT
Dutton continues to repeat these issues happen “at night” as a means of saying this issue has “nothing to do with renewables”:
My point is that that is happening a night-time, David. This is nothing to do with renewables, the debate over the last couple of weeks. We want an honest, reasonable, unemotional discussion about it.
Updated at 19.31 EDT
Dutton says Bowen is a ‘bunny in the headlights.’
Dutton is being grilled on the energy crisis now by Insiders host David Speers, who pressed the opposition leader on why he is criticizing the Labor government for how they’re dealing with a problem rooted in his own time in government.
We were agnostic regarding the technology or energy source … this is the point. Labor would have turned off coal years ago. Chris Bowen’s argument still this very day to exclude gas and coal. This is an argument over the last fortnight about firming up.
As pointed out, you dedicated your introduction to it this morning – the mechanisms are there for Angus Taylor. All the same policy settings and ingredients were none. It was a failure of Chris Bowen in his response and the regulators if they are saying the companies have gamed this.
When it was noted that there weren’t any blackouts or load shedding in the past couple of days, Dutton paused before finding a new angle:
I wouldn’t get too excited about the first 14, or 21 days … If you look at what Aemo and others have said, they have raised real concerns about the companies. The sense of panic from Chris Bowen that is out there at the moment wasn’t there when Coalition was in government.
I think he is a bunny in headlights.
Updated at 19.39 EDT
Dutton says there is ‘fault all around’ for the energy crisis
Opposition leader Peter Dutton is on ABC’s Insiders this morning and was immediately questioned on the previous government’s energy legacy.
Dutton begins by saying there is “fault all around” after being shown a clip of NSW premier Dominic Perrotet saying an “ideological war” prevented private sector investment in clean energy.
Dutton, though, was not having it and attempted to frame the problem as a fault of the new Labor government:
There is fault all around here, David; over a long period people have been taking different positions, including state governments, as was pointed out. We’ve got a huge gas supply in the north and west of this country.
In a Labor state in WA, there is the ability for certainty to be put into the energy market. We have constraints regarding the gas pipeline bringing gas from north to south, and we’ve got moratoriums in Victoria, for example, both Liberal and Labor governments where they haven’t wanted that gas. As a federal government – explore that gas.
For the federal government, the Coalition’s part, yes, over a long we’ve had huge investment into renewables, a practical approach to gas, coal, et cetera. We invested in something like 26,000 emission reduction policies and programs and will continue to do that.
Updated at 20.03 EDT
Albanese says to focus now on climate targets and the creation of Jobs and Skills Australia.
Prime minister Anthony Albanese has spoken to the Sun Herald this morning, outlining his domestic agenda ahead of the first sitting of the new parliament.
Albanese has had a busy first month as prime minister, traveling overseas twice already and dealing with rising inflation and the energy crisis on the east coast.
But he confirmed to the papers that he wanted to continue pursuing his domestic agenda, including legislating climate targets, ten days of domestic and family violence leave, creating Jobs and Skills Australia, holding a national employment summit, and another national cabinet meeting.
It’s four weeks since we were elected today; it has been a pretty busy four weeks. Normally governments would still be moving offices now.
We’ve asked people to bring forward the legislation to create Jobs and Skills Australia, to make the Nationally Determined Contribution [to emissions reductions] and the target – 43% by 2030 and then [zero by] 2050. That legislation will come forward, and some appropriation legislation may be required.
There will be the ten days paid domestic and family violence leaves legislation and legislation required to cancel the cashless welfare card. There will be a fair bit. It’s when it’s prepared for the first fortnight of sitting.
Albanese also confirmed another two sitting weeks before the budget on the last Tuesday in October.
Updated at 19.24 EDT
NSW records 6,348 new Covid cases and seven deaths
NSW has reported 6,348 new Covid cases and seven deaths:
COVID-19 update – Sunday, 19 June 2022
In the 24-hour reporting period to 4 pm yesterday:
– 96.5% of people aged 16+ have had one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine – 95% of people aged 16+ have had two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine pic.twitter.com/gSuo6lymZe
— NSW Health (@NSWHealth) June 18, 2022
Updated at 19.05 EDT
Vic Records 5,472 new Covid cases and 19 deaths
Victoria has recorded 5,472 new Covid cases and 19 deaths overnight:
Aboriginal Flag to be permanently flown on Harbour Bridge
Building on the announcement mentioned below, here is the AAP report on the Aboriginal flag having a permanent home on the Sydney Harbour Bridge:
The Aboriginal flag will have a permanent spot on the Sydney Harbour Bridge, with the NSW government committing $25m to install a third flagpole by the end of the year.
Flying the Aboriginal flag alongside the Australian and NSW state flags was an important gesture towards Closing the Gap, NSW premier Dominic Perrottet said about the 2022-23 budget announcement:
Our Indigenous history should be celebrated and acknowledged so young Australians understand the rich and enduring culture that we have here with our past.
Installing the Aboriginal flag permanently on the Sydney Harbour Bridge will do just that and will continue the healing process as part of the broader move toward reconciliation.
The flagpoles are about 20 meters high, the same as a six-story building, while the flags require an attachment strong enough to withstand all weather conditions.
Transport for NSW and Aboriginal Affairs will engage with key Aboriginal stakeholders about the project.
Updated at 18.57 EDT
We begin with the news that the NSW government has announced that the Aboriginal flag will have a permanent spot on the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The AAP reports that the government has committed $25m to install a third flagpole by the end of the year.
The commitment comes amid a bit of a spending spree from the NSW government before its budget next week. Yesterday, the government announced a $100m investment into women’s safety in public places, at home, and in the workplace. It comes only days after the government announced a $12bn investment in the early childhood sector.
Sticking with NSW, the Australian Energy Market Operator has confirmed a large fire at an electrical substation in Illawarra will not affect the electricity supply. The fire was contained last night at the substation on the Princes Highway at Yallah, south of Dapto, with Aemo confirming in a tweet it will not disrupt supply.
There is still much going on, so let’s dive in.