Good morning blogans,
Here we go, down the hill, one ski, no poles, as Paul Keating would say.
Today is Thursday all day, which means it is the last sitting day.
Tony Abbott was on 7.30 Report last night. Katharine Murphy did a wrap, reporting Abbott’s view that a mass casualty event had been avoided due to the gun laws.
Abbott also said there was no deal – as far as he was concerned – with David Leyonhjelm, even though the senator has released all the emails that suggests there was a deal. Must have been a ministerial staffer, Abbott said, but no deals from me or my office.
There were no deals, no deals.
In case you missed it last night, here is the snippet from 7.30.
After Abbott’s interview, Leyonhjelm is out this morning disputing Abbott’s version of events.
Leyonhjelm makes the entirely logical point that a government regulation would not have been introduced on the say so of staffers.
He told Michael Brissenden on ABC AM:
If all of that occurred without the prime minister’s personal knowledge, that would be understandable. There is an awful lot of regulations that are done but it is inconceivable that his office wouldn’t have known about it.
Q: Abbott also said that this sort of sunset clause is common in such regulations and you were just being told how these things work. Did you misunderstand what was being offered?
He is wrong about that. There are no sunset clauses in most regulations. We look at regulations all the time. I moved to disallow a few of them. There is no such thing as an automatic sunset clause in regulations. That is just false. In order to implement the deal that I had with the minister that we negotiated, they had to actually bring in a specific regulation, which they did.
Q: You looked at it and thought this was a deal, yes?
Yes, they wanted my vote on a particular amendment to a bill, an unrelated bill. In exchange for that, we agreed that they would implement a sunset clause on the ban on the import of the seven shot lever-action shotgun.
Q: What did you say when that deall never materialised that you thought you had?
That happened in August this year. I had a phone call from Michael Keenan, the justice minister who said, “We are reimposing the import ban on the seven shot lever action.”
I said, “You can’t do that. The sunset clause is about to kick in. “It was a week before the 12 months was up and it was about to kick in so the ban would be lifted. We did a deal. You are renegotiating on the deal. His answer was, “We never intended the allow it in anyway.” In other words, they were intending to do me over.
Q: Has it hardened since what happened this week?
Well, it has made it a bit more awkward. I am still 50/50. I am prepared to vote against the ABCC. I make no bones about that. I am prepared to vote against it. There are some bad aspects about that bill. Its purpose is admirable.
OK that’s it. Let’s crack on. I am @gabriellechan and @mpbowers is just basting himself liberally with a can of Start Ya Bastard. I will explain.