Page 2484 - Week 07 - Monday, 15 August 2022

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MR STEEL (Murrumbidgee—Minister for Skills, Minister for Transport and City Services and Special Minister of State) (9.36): Like other Labor and Greens MLAs in this Chamber, I have full confidence in the Chief Minister. Voters showed their confidence in the Chief Minister at the 2020 election and that confidence continues in this place.

This government’s track record of leadership through the COVID pandemic and through the recovery speaks for itself. The latest budget shows a significant improvement in the territory’s position and delivers real services for Canberrans. The only real question today is why the Canberra Liberals chose this mechanism to score a political point.

The Greens expressed their confidence on the day notice was given. There has not yet been a debate on the Appropriation Bill and, as the responsible minister, I will continue, in the lead up to that debate, to work with my cabinet colleagues on the issues of funding for the racing industry.

There is no genuine question of confidence or supply, and the statements by members today make that clear. Indeed their positions were already clear on the day Ms Lee gave notice of this motion.

The framework for government is clear and transparent. The terms of the Parliamentary Agreement are online, and they reflect the policies that our government took to an election, and the Chief Minister has welcomed debate on these policies.

Today’s debate offers no alternatives to the government’s vision and is not genuinely about supply. There is just no question that the government is functioning. Today is another series of stunts by the Canberra Liberals, and that is how the Canberra Liberals, with Alistair Coe, chose to campaign in the 2020 election. We are seeing an opposition and an opposition leader, like her predecessors, that are only interested in stunts but have even less substance.

Media events with ice buckets and boxing gloves are all we see from the Canberra Liberals. After the 2020 election, the Canberra Liberals changed their leader, but they have not changed their tactics. They are sticking with stunts over substance.

Canberrans do not reward political stunts. They want to see meaningful policy debates and realistic solutions to the challenges that our community faces. To provide an example of an independent commentator’s view on this, Ian Bushnell from Riotact said in an article on 5 August:

The no-confidence motions … seem more about attempting to build a narrative and hog the spotlight rather than offering a compelling alternative that the electorate might buy.

The Legislative Assembly does not sit too often and many would conclude that such stunts are wasting its precious time.

So, do not take it from me. Members, take it from independent commentators like Mr Bushnell.

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