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Sky News, Credlin, 24 August 2022

Chris Smith: Sarah, welcome to the show. Let’s start with the red fronts, the red shirts rorts that broke today. It’s been followed forensically by Peta I know, but further revelations that senior police tasked with investigating MPs over the infamous rort were actively blocked from doing their jobs in a deliberate cover up to help Labor win the 2018 election. This is serious stuff.

Sarah Henderson: Well, Chris, good evening and it is indeed very serious stuff. Just one more reason not to vote for Daniel Andrews and Labor this November and to put Matt Guy into power. This is just horrifying. We have seen this government mired in corruption allegations. Of course, the Red Shirts rort meant basically that the Labor government effectively stole $388,000. And now we see very, very serious revelations of corruption in relation to the police investigation.

You know, whether it’s the hospital chaos, whether it’s the integrity issues with the government, whether it’s the major cost blow-outs on big projects, whether it’s the absolutely horrific levels of debt that Daniel Andrews has driven Victoria into, Victoria is now a shambles under Daniel Andrews and Labor. As I’ve said before, Chris, we have got to get rid of him and this is just one more reason to do so.

Chris Smith: But it’s never his fault Sarah, come on, never his fault. You know how he gets in front of a press conference and talks for about 2 hours, you know, using his great oratory skills and tells everyone it’s someone else’s fault, not his.

Sarah Henderson: Well, Chris, absolutely. Look at the absolute shambles with the management of the pandemic – the lockdowns, the curfews, the human rights abuses, the mental health toll, particularly on children who could not go to school for months on end. This man has got to go. Yes, he’s been called Teflon Dan, but the chickens are now coming home to roost, frankly, Chris. We are seeing a government out of control, a government that is no longer putting the needs of Victorians first. And frankly, if Labor cannot run Victoria’s health system, it does not deserve to be re-elected to continue to govern.

Chris Smith: This whole dilapidated system that is state hospitals and ambulance services is just a joke. Wait time stretching hours, ill patients being put into tents. This is the reality of health under that Labor government, isn’t it?

Sarah Henderson: Absolutely. We have seen absolute chaos, not just in Victorian public hospitals but also with the ambulance service. Dozens of Victorians have died as a result. And what does Daniel Andrews do? Roll out another ridiculous infrastructure project which could cost 125 billion, maybe 150, or even 200 billion. He could not care less about the health of Victorians and I say well done, congratulations to Matt Guy and the Liberal Nationals team who’ve put the health priorities of Victorians first and will shelve this project which frankly no one needs and which will take 15 years to deliver. As I say, Chris, this is beyond a joke. This man is driving our proud state into the ground, mired in corruption, mired in rorts, mired in debt blow outs, mired in maladministration. He has got to go.

Chris Smith: Yeah. Daniel Andrews, you’re very happy to come on to the programme and refute all of that. Now to Queensland and where their Education Department has made the decision today to cut the pay of teachers who refuse to get vaccinated against COVID 19. With the plan receiving the backing of the federal aged care minister Anika. Well, SARAH, this is surely now unnecessary and it’s just blatant discrimination.

Sarah Henderson: It is blatant discrimination. It is wrong on every level. And frankly, they should hang their heads in shame. People in this country do have a choice. Some Australians have decided not to get vaccinated for very good reasons and to punish people in this way is just frankly disgusting. We have seen these vaccination mandates cripple the Victorian economy including when of course we saw the breakdown with the protests involving the CFMEU. What did Daniel Andrews do? He just stopped the entire sector working for two weeks. He used the vaccination mandates as a political tool, nothing to do with the health of Victorians. And this is another example where governments are abusing their power and frankly, this must be immediately overturned Chris.

Chris Smith: Now Anthony Albanese has had his pound of flesh and then some from former PM Scott Morrison over the past ten days. In reference to those multiple ministries, many of your colleagues have called for an inquiry into the actual pandemic. Surely that’s the priority and it’s not another inquiry into what Scott Morrison did.

Sarah Henderson: Well, Chris, the Opposition supports us understanding what happened in relation to the ministerial arrangements put in place by the former prime minister Scott Morrison. What we are seeing from Labor is Anthony Albanese using this issue to cover up frankly a whole range of very serious issues that the Labor Government has refused to deal with, whether it’s the cost of living crisis, obviously the horrific prices we’re seeing with power, with fuel, with groceries, whether it’s the broken promise on reducing power bills by $275 a year, the broken promise on increasing real wages, the chaos that we are going to see on construction sites. And of course, there’s no plan. Labor is going full steam ahead with this jobs summit. But where is the plan to address workforce shortages? We put forward a very strong plan to increase the pension work test, a very constructive idea to allow pensioners to work more. And what has Anthony Albanese and this Government done? Absolutely nothing. They have no plan and that is very, very evident.

Chris Smith: Are you enjoying the freezing cold weather in Canberra today?

Sarah Henderson: It was a bit chilly. I haven’t been out of the building very much luckily, but it is great. But as I’ll just say, it is great to be travelling around the country and of course calling on Minister Rowland, Labor’s Communication Minister, to get on with her job, get off her training wheels and deliver $140 million of grants for regional communications. She’s been sitting on her hands for three months. You know, Australians deserve regional connectivity and I would really like to see the Minister get on with her job and make sure that these projects get delivered.

Chris Smith: That priority is not in dispute. If only the Government would think the same way. Sarah Henderson, thank you very much for your time.

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