There has been plenty of action in Australian politics today and though it was commonly known throughout the morning, Scott Morrison didn’t make the announcement of a May 21 election until 11.30am.
The Prime Minister left Kirribilli and flew to Canberra for the official business of advising the Governor-General, David Hurley at Government House, before heading to Parliament House to let the people of Australia know of the election date.
The Prime Minister began by saying he loves Australia and Australians. ‘I know Australians have been through a very tough time. I also know that Australia continues to face very tough challenges in the years ahead. But more than either I know that we live in the best country in the world, and more than ever, I am optimistic about our future, and what I know Australians can achieve, because despite the very real difficulties that we face and the setbacks we indeed have had, Australia, and Australians have shown that we can overcome.
Mr Morrison said that by working together we’ve avoided the nightmare scenarios that so many other countries have faced in recent years. ‘Unemployment was predicted to reach 15 per cent. But now is it just 4 per cent and falling the equal lowest level in some 48 years.
Our economic recovery measures, especially job keeper, save some 700,000 jobs. And our health response working together, has saved compared to other countries 10s of 1000s of lives, on almost any measure, from fatality rates from COVID vaccine rates, economic growth jobs, growth, or debt levels, Australia’s recovery is leading the world. But we’re not out of the woods yet. And Australians know, there is still a lot of uncertainty ahead. And I get it, that people are tired of politics as we go into this election. But this election, and this campaign is incredibly important. Because there is so much at stake for Australia and our future.
It’s all about choices
The campaigning began on the spot with Mr Morrison outlining the failures of the opposition and what appears to be his new catchcry – choice. Above all, this election is a choice.
‘It’s a choice between a strong economy and a labour opposition that would weaken it. It’s a choice between an economic recovery that is leading the world and a labour opposition that would weaken and risk it.
‘It’s a choice between responsible financial management that has seen Australia maintain its triple-A credit rating in the most extreme of circumstances, and has seen the largest budget turnaround in the last 12 months that we’ve seen in 70 years.
Playing the ‘war’ card
Every incumbent or aspiring Prime Minister knows the fear card is a handy one to slip into a campaign and after outlining several other choices the Australian public needs to make, Mr Morrison said that part of the plan was to keep Australians safe by ensuring they continue the biggest rebuilding of our defence and security forces, since World War II.
‘We are dealing with a world that is less stable than at any other time since the Second World War.’
Mr Morrison took five minutes of questions before ending the conference.