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Byron Shire
December 3, 2022

The Rocky ring road

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When Michelle Landry MP called a ‘presser’ last week to publicise what she believed was the PM’s criticism of her over a question on funding for the Rockhampton ring road, some glaring inconsistencies emerged.

It seemed that she viewed the PM’s answer to her question about funding for the Rockhampton ring road as a personal attack on her. We expect political interactions to be robust. And politicians shouldn’t be taking personal offence on how present and former governments allocate public funding, given recent examples of pork barrelling. Even defensible allocations of public monies have to be closely scrutinised.

Importantly the Speaker, on whether Albo had been disrespectful, said: ‘I did not see the PM show any disrespect.’

Surprisingly, only coalition women flanked her at the presser that was called, apparently, to reprimand Albo. Not one male coalition MP! One could understand Mr Dutton not joining them, but not even a token coalition male in the protest group?

As former Liberal MP Julie Banks pointed out, ‘It was a group media opp (to discredit the Labor government’s Respect at Work Agenda) which didn’t fool anyone’.

I have looked at the footage a few times now and it does appear to me that Mr Dutton’s faux pas was too good an opportunity for the PM to pass up. It was a ‘classic Keating’ moment. I got the impression that Ms Landry also saw the humour in Mr Dutton’s slip up.

One thing is certain. Money will now be fast-tracked for a Rocky ring road. It could perhaps be nick-named the Dutton drive-thru or the Landry loop. But remember: the funding has to stack up!

Frank Lynch, Wilsons Creek

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