‘Admit you were wrong’: MPs’ scathing letter to ScoMo
FOUR Central Queensland Labor MPs have banded together to give Prime Minister Scott Morrison a not-so-warm welcome to the Sunshine State.
Mackay MP Julieanne Gilbert, Gladstone MP Glenn Butcher, Keppel MP Brittany Lauga and Rockhampton MP Barry O'Rourke have signed an open letter calling on the prime minister to apologise for his "persistent efforts to try to force open our borders".
Mr Morrison has joined Queensland Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington on the campaign trail since the weekend.
The politically-charged letter seized on the LNP's repeated calls for a reopening of the state's borders during the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Dear Prime Minister, welcome to Central Queensland - where the sun is shining, the pubs are open, and our tourism sector is booming," it read.
"We strongly urge you to use your visit here to apologise to our communities for your persistent efforts to try to force open our borders.
"As Deb Frecklington has admitted, you and your federal colleagues have been running a co-ordinated attack with the Queensland LNP on Queensland's border since May, including trying to pressure the premier into ignoring the advice of our Chief Health Officer, Dr Jeannette Young."
The letter then asked Mr Morrison to consider how life in Queensland could have been different, had the borders reopened early.
"How many people here would have died or suffered long term health consequences if we'd had a second wave?" it read.
"How many workers would have been without jobs? Would our mining industry have ended up like Brazil's, with multiple mine sites closed due to outbreaks?"
The letter concluded with the four MPs calling on Mr Morrison and Ms Frecklington to "do the decent thing, admit you were wrong and apologise".
An LNP spokesman has slammed the correspondence, describing it as "petty politics".
"Using the border as a political weapon proves Labor only cares about their own jobs and not the jobs of the 200,000 Queenslanders out of work right now," he said.
"The LNP's economic plan includes building the drought-busting New Bradfield Scheme, four-laning the Bruce Highway, building dams to improve water and food security and a no-new-tax guarantee."
In a television interview yesterday, Mr Morrison said he was aware Queenslanders were supportive of the border arrangements in place.
They have just got to be done in a fair way and with no double standards, he said.
"Here in Queensland, the bounce back from the COVID recession hasn't been as strong as in other states and territories," Mr Morrison said.