JOURNALIST: Let me just ask you right off the top Labor have changed their position on tow backs, I understand entirely that the Government will be cynical about their capacity to implement it and we’ll go through some of the details about why and what issues might be in play there, but would you at least agree that compared to what their policy was 48 hours ago this is a welcome change even if you cynical about their capacity to deliver it?
PETER DUTTON: Peter I think if you analyse what’s been agreed to at the conference you’d have to agree Bill Shorten has had a deal put together and it’s a deal over policy, over good policy, the Government has a policy which works in relation to Operation Sovereign Borders (OSB); the Labor Party in this deal, in this dodgy deal, stitched up by Mr Shorten has tossed to one side Temporary Protection Visas (TPV) which is an absolutely essential element of OSB, they’ve got this watered down version of turn-backs and they are sending up a white flag saying essentially that they’ve given up on the current arrangements in relation to regional processing centres.
So there’s a lot to be debated, but people characterise this as somehow the Labor Party agreeing to a carbon copy of what the Government has had as a successful policy in OSB completely misreads the situation.
JOURNALIST: Well just on that point Minister, you say it’s a watered down version of turn-backs, in what sense?
PETER DUTTON: Well, Mr Shorten started out on the 7:30 Report Paul, as you’d recall, saying this was a change of heart from the Labor Party, that they had admitted that 1200 people had drowned at sea on their watch when the 50,000 people arrived on 800 boats and he said that they wanted turn-backs, that they were going to accept that the Government had got it right.
Within 12 hours it already had been watered down by Mr Marles the next day and all the language we’re seeing now is not about the stern approach taken by the Government which has resulted in success in stopping the boats, this is now an option of turn-backs, it’s now a discussion about turn-backs.
The fact that Tanya Plibersek a future Foreign Affairs Minister in a Shorten Government abstained from the process and through her delegate voted against Mr Shorten’s position demonstrates how fraught this would be if they were to get into government.
If you don’t have a Foreign Affairs Minister who is in agreement with a very essential part of the success of stopping the boats and you don’t have a frontbench behind the leader it will quickly descend into what Mr Rudd presided over which was complete chaos when it came to boat arrivals and a breakdown in our border protection.
JOURNALIST: But the reality is, here, that they have got the turn-back option and it’s quite clear from what Bill Shorten has said that he’s quite prepared to use this as Prime Minister. So if you’re saying it’s not going to work why, why won’t it work?
PETER DUTTON: Well because Paul, as you acknowledge in your introduction, the resolve in the Government has been quite remarkable and it has resulted in success.
The people smugglers right now are trying to fill boats to send to our country and we deal with this threat every day.
Mr Fitzgibbon on the frontbench of the Labor Party said only on Friday that he supported the turn-back proposal as an option as put by Mr Shorten because he didn’t think they’d ever have to use it.
Now does every decision in relation to a turn-back have to go to Cabinet?
If it has to go to the National Security Committee you’ve got the Foreign Affairs Minister who is against it.
You’ve got people within the Labor Party who are completely divided.
Mr Rudd started out saying they would adopt a turn-back policy, bearing in mind that when Labor came to Government in 2007 there were no children in detention and by the height of the dysfunction and division within the Labor Party on this issue almost 2000 children were in detention.
We’ve been able to get that number closer to 100 and we’ve closed 13 of 17 detention centres.
JOURNALIST: Minister can I jump in and ask, and Paul Kelly alluded to this in his editorial, is the secrecy attached to OSB paramount to the success of something like turn-backs because, of course, Labor has said and Richard Marles has said, that greater transparency in line nonetheless with an option of turn-backs is something they would look to move to?
PETER DUTTON: Operational security is absolutely essential as it would be for a police operation or a military operation.
There is a time to provide information appropriately and we do that, but that time is not during the course of an operation because potentially you put your own people at risk and you provide a direct feed of what’s happening to the people smugglers who, in many cases, will be in communication with those on board a vessel.
Now the other important point to note here Peter, is that Richard Marles has received eight briefings from the Generals in charge of OSB.
Mr Shorten was offered a briefing and turned it down.
And for Mr Marles to be out there saying he doesn’t understand how OSB works in terms of turn-backs is a complete nonsense and I just think it goes to show that this dodgy deal that they’ve stitched up is all about getting them through convention as opposed to having a solid policy which will serve them well to stare down the people smugglers in Government.
JOURNALIST: Well can I ask you a question? I understand what you say about OSB when there are operational matters happening that you can’t talk about it and that you need that secrecy at that moment in time.
What about now though in relation to the number, for example, of tow-backs since the Government re-introduced the policy, can you tell us how many tow-backs there have actually been, now that there isn’t an operational matter in play right now?
PETER DUTTON: Well Peter we provide monthly updates and we will provide an update again shortly, we’re due for another monthly update and we provide that detail at the appropriate time.
JOURNALIST: Is that across the whole time you have been in power though Peter Dutton because I’m just wondering if someone like Joel Fitzgibbon is saying he doubts they’ll ever need to use them, you know, in net terms how many tow-backs have there been over the last 20 months or so since the Government was elected?
PETER DUTTON: Well Peter as I say we’ll update that number shortly in accordance with the normal monthly update, but there are a number of areas here which are very important.
One is the bilateral discussions that we have. We have spoken publicly about a venture some months ago and it is important for the Foreign Minister to be able to have a frank conversation with her counterpart within a particular country.
Now if Tanya Plibersek is the Foreign Affairs Minister of this country and she refuses to do that, the message across the region will result in people smugglers saying to their people ‘get on boats because you’ve got another weak Labor Government’.
You have to have the absolute resolve of the members sitting around that Cabinet table, of people on the backbench. The Liberal Party has that under the strong leadership of Tony Abbott.
But the fact is that this deal that they’ve put together with all the bolt-ons which question the sovereignty of Nauru and Papua New Guinea, and abandon TPVs altogether, demonstrate that Mr Shorten just doesn’t have the resolve.
He said only a couple of weeks ago that he was opposed to turn-backs and yet he said yesterday in his speech that now this is a deeply held belief. I mean I don’t know which week you should believe him.
He has been completely inconsistent when it comes to turn-backs and I think people smugglers sniff that out in a heartbeat.
People dying on the high seas and kids going back into detention was the recipe of Labor when they were last in Government and would be Mr Shorten’s recipe and we cannot tolerate that.
JOURNALIST: Labor has said it will increase over time the refugee intake to 27,000 people, what’s the Government’s response to that?
PETER DUTTON: Well Paul already we have 13,750 people a year we take under the Humanitarian and Refugee Programme. That increases by 5000 a year to 18,750 by 2018. That puts us, on a per capita basis, at probably the second most generous nation in the world.
Now my fear is that this has been provided simply as a sop to the Left to try to get them to agree in relation to the watered down turn-back policy, but what it does essentially is says that Australia is more generous than the United States, than the United Kingdom, than Canada, than other European countries.
In fact under Labor’s proposal we would be far beyond any other country in terms of their humanitarian programmes.
My sense is that the people smugglers who are part of a sophisticated criminal syndicate would turn that message in one of Australia being open again for business.
When Labor was last in Government they had to turn some of the humanitarian positions into positions for people who had arrived by boat because they were overwhelmed by the number and if hundreds of thousands came under a Shorten Government, I think very quickly many of those numbers again would be used to try and deal with the people who are overflowing from detention centres.
So I think it’s actually a sign of weakness from the Labor Party, it’s not about good policy, it’s about putting a deal together and I think that’s why people see through Bill Shorten and why people believe that he is not fit to be Prime Minister of this country.
JOURNALIST: OK, now you’ve referred to offshore processing at Nauru and Manus, what’s your concern about Labor’s position there?
PETER DUTTON: My concern is that they do harm to the bilateral relations that we have with those two countries through their proposal.
Again it’s not about a better public policy outcome, it’s about trying to get this dodgy deal stitched up to save his leadership and if you’re driven by that sort of internal dysfunction and division, as Bill Shorten is, you can never deliver when you’re in Government.
Ultimately that’s what brought down Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard because Rudd said – exactly as Shorten has – that he would introduce turn-backs, he didn’t say it would be watered down like Mr Shorten has and you saw the consequences of 1200 people drowning at sea.
We’ve not had a reported death at sea since OSB has commenced and the Government works very closely with our regional processing centre partners.
We want to provide a humane environment for people before they return to their country of origin if they’re found not to be refugees, but we are not going to tolerate a situation, and nor will the countries who have sovereign rights in relation to their own territory of course, take some lecture from us and that would I think unravel what is a very important relationship for us between Nauru and Australia and between Australia and PNG and indeed other bilateral partners.
JOURNALIST: Can we just focus on Government policy, how many refugees are there, people found to be genuine refugees are there, in the offshore centres and what are we doing about it in terms of placing them?
PETER DUTTON: We have close to about 1000 people in Manus and we have about 800 or so, rough figures, at Nauru.
The Governments there are going through a process of working out who is a refugee and who is not, but I can tell you Paul when I was up on Manus the view, the very strong view, that came from the guards up there when I said ‘well these people who are found not to be refugees, why will they not go back to their country of origin? Why are they staying here, refusing to co-operate?’ Their answer to me very simply was that they believe that if there is a change of government - Labor’s elected – they will come to Australia.
That makes it a very difficult environment in which to operate. For those people who have a refugee claim substantiated then we have international partners…..
JOURNALIST: Isn’t that what happened during the Howard years anyway, during the Howard years people stayed in centres for a long time, but then ultimately most were resettled in Australia when they were seen to be legitimate refugees?
PETER DUTTON: Well there are some situations where we can’t return people to some countries that won’t allow forced removals, forced returns, but we need to work through on a bilateral basis for example as we’re doing with Iran at the moment. But we’re working with other bilateral partners because this is a regional response and we have a good relationship.
The point that I make is that through this sop to the Left that Mr shorten has put to the conference he is seeking to undermine effectively the relationship with those bilateral partners.
I think if you take that together with an abandonment of the TPVs, a watering down of the turn-backs then I think it demonstrates Mr Shorten is a recipe for disaster when it comes to protecting our borders.
JOURNALIST: Could I just go back to the question of refugees, you’ve given us those numbers, how many of those have been found to be genuine refugees and what’s happ0ening to those people?
PETER DUTTON: Paul they’re working through those people at the moment so obviously we don’t have a complete picture.
But for those people in Nauru that are found to be refugees there is a temporary arrangement for them to reside outside of the regional processing centre.
We have an open centre arrangement in Nauru so people can come and go from the centres during the daylight hours, they can mix in the community and its quite a liberal arrangement there if you like.
But the permanent pathway for those people is to go to Cambodia and that bilateral arrangement was struck by my predecessor Scott Morrison and we have some people that have gone to Cambodia and we’re working with the Cambodians to allow more people to settle there permanently.
In relation to PNG the arrangement with the PNG Government is that those people will settle, will reside, within PNG or if there is another arrangement that we can arrive at, we’re happy to work with partners to find outcomes so that we can move people out of detention as quickly as possible.
But bear in mind we had 50,000 arrive on 800 boats and there’s 30,000 odd people still within the network to deal with so these issues will go on for some time.
JOURNALIST: Can I just ask, as Minister are you satisfied with the conditions in the detention centre at Manus Island?
PETER DUTTON: Paul, I am, nothing is ideal in relation to any of these issues, but we do have a world-class medical facility there which I inspected when I was there. I would prefer to have no people within the centre and I’d prefer for all of those people go back.
As I say the greatest travesty would be through all of this hard work, having moved people out of detention; to have Labor into Government re-opening detention centres as people piled into them on new boat arrivals would be a humanitarian disaster and I don’t want a repeat of that.
So we have worked with PNG, we’ve worked with Nauru, to make sure that whatever can be put in place to create a safe environment is put in place, but our very strong message still remains and that is if you come to Australia illegally by boat you will not be settled here.
You will be going to a regional processing centre and from there you will be returned to your country of origin.
Unfortunately the Labor Party sends a weak and divided message to those people smugglers which would only encourage them to refill those boats.
JOURNALIST: Peter Dutton, your colleague Craig Laundy came out in the Daily Telegraph yesterday on the front page breaking ranks I suppose and advocating changes to entitlements, asking his colleagues to start flying economy rather than business, to start taking taxis instead of Commonwealth cars.
He’s been doing it since he first entered the Parliament what’s your view on that? Do you think some sort of reform in that entitlement space is worth looking at?
PETER DUTTON: Peter my view in relation to these matters is that politicians making decisions, making rules about their own arrangements just doesn’t work.
I think the Remuneration Tribunal which is independent of both the Government and the Opposition is an appropriate way for them to assess what is appropriate and for them to administer that.
I think that’s the arrangement that stands us in good stead. There are rules and if people break those rules there are consequences as a result.
I think what taxpayers expect is fair value for money, they don’t expect people, not everybody expects people to walk to Canberra or ride a bike, for Minister’s in particular you are on and off planes every day of the week. Stakeholders demand that you are in different capital cities to attend discussions, to work through public policy, you expect us to turn up on a Sunday morning to programmes or to television interviews….
JOURNALIST: ……I assume Peter Dutton you didn’t fly into Brisbane on a chopper, I assume that you drove in, but legitimate question though.
Craig Laundy’s point seems to be in business – in corporate Australia there’s increasingly, particularly on shorter flights rather than say a longer flight say between Perth and Sydney for example or certainly international travel as well – but on shorter flights between Sydney and Melbourne that sort of thing – that it should, like it is in corporate Australia increasingly – be economy rather than politicians, senior advisers and senior bureaucrats all flying business, what’s your view on that?
PETER DUTTON: Well Peter different companies will have different arrangements, but in the end this is a decision for the Remuneration Tribunal and I just don’t think it is wise at any time politicians deciding what their own benefits will be, what their own salary packages will be, I think all of that is appropriately decided by the independent Rem Tribunal.
It’s stood us in good stead for a period of time and as I say if people act outside those rules then there are consequences to pay for it.
JOURNALIST: What about the issue of, the nature of political fundraising. I’m certain that Ministers and Shadow Ministers that have to partake in this do so somewhat begrudgingly, but the party coffers do need filling.
What do you figure the whole issue of being able to - in a sense - buy time with a Minister or a Shadow Minister, I know that time is auctioned off, you have stakeholder meetings, $10,000 a plate dinners – this happens on all sides of politics it’s not a partisan problem, it’s a bipartisan issue, is this the time of thing you think needs to be in the mix for reform because the public don’t seem to like it when they see the details?
PETER DUTTON: Well Peter I suppose it’s one of those sort of debates where it’s the lesser of two evils.
The other option is for there to be public funding which happens in some countries and the question would be, as you say, whether or not the public would find that palatable if they’re paying out millions of dollars during campaign periods.
The reality is it costs money to provide information to people. We live in a great democracy and we should celebrate that, we want to have fair and free elections, people need to be properly informed, it costs money to put adds on to your TV channel, it costs money to provide information through newspapers and through the internet and otherwise.
The difficulty from the Liberal Party perspective is that we just don’t have those rivers of gold from the union movement and you’re seeing through the Royal Commission at the moment the fact that Mr Shorten was able to do deals with employers, the unions benefitted from that and ultimately the Labor Party receives millions of dollars each year from the union movement. The Liberal Party not one dollar.
So this is a vexed issue and there’s a different dynamic for each of the parties. So from my perspective again I think as long as we have a situation where donations are properly disclosed then I think that’s what the public expects to know about, if we have that then there’s transparency and people can have confidence in the process.
But in the end, do we have a good system of government? Yes.
Do we have a good system of democracy in our country that we should celebrate? Absolutely.
JOURNALIST: Well what about, just as one final question on this if I can Peter Dutton then we’ll move on to other issues, what about though the idea that some form of official business is organised at the same time as travel which is really primarily about attending the expensive fundraiser?
We saw Bill Shorten outed I think on Channel 7 about doing this, Tony Abbott has done it before, I suspect a lot of other politicians have.
I think the public, even if they accept they would rather not have taxpayer funded campaigns and they like the idea of it being based on private donations, one of their concerns would be the taxpayer is footing the bill for the travel with something that really is an incidental piece of government business which is tacked on deliberately to provide all the entitlements to flow, even though the real reason for being there is to fill up the party coffers?
PETER DUTTON: Again Peter, there are rules around that. If the reason for being there is a personal event or about a party fundraiser for example then there are rules in relation to that.
JOURNALIST: But they’re very easily gotten around, I mean, quite literally were you inclined to, you could come to Sydney do a $10,000 a plate dinner and as long as you organised to meet with some sort of stakeholder from your portfolio that is absolutely covered under entitlements.
PETER DUTTON: Look Peter just from a practical perspective, and again politicians talking about this stuff can never win regardless of what they’re saying, but to give you an example for Ministers, I mean, my PA has a folder on her desk for every capital city.
Now there would be 20 or 30 requests at any one point in time for people requesting us to attend their conference, to speak with them, stakeholders, to attend the launch of something, to go to a particular Ministerial visit to an electorate.
What generally happens is that if you’ve got a trip coming up to Sydney and the reason is that you are going to Peter van Onselen's show or going to meet with Paul Kelly to do an interview for 'The Australian', for example, you'll fill in the day with meetings every 20 minutes.
Or you might say ‘I've got to be in Sydney for a conference on Tuesday or for a meeting with a particular border force group’ or whatever it might be and you structure your program around that. I mean, that's how it works practically.
Now, you can put all sorts of rules in place. I think in the end people need to apply common sense. If they don't pass the pub test, if they can't justify something, then there is already a financial penalty in place, people have to repay money. I think in the end that provides assurance to the public.
But as I say, I suspect that politicians talking about this will never justify it one way or the other. It's just one of those topics.
JOURNALIST: Minister, looking at Australian citizens who are not dual nationals, how confident are you that the Government can find a way to legislate without making these people stateless, but nonetheless providing a sanction against their return to Australia?
PETER DUTTON: Paul, obviously the Prime Minister and I and other ministers have been absolutely determined to do what we can to keep Australians safe.
The first tranche of changes in relation to citizenship for dual nationals has been introduced into the Parliament, will be voted on in the next sitting period.
We believe that's essential because if people want to do harm to Australians there is a price to pay for that and if there are Australian citizens who aren't dual nationals then we have asked as part of Philip Ruddock and Connie Fierravanti-Wells' process to look at what options there might be.
For example, you could suspend rights of citizenship in relation to travel, in relation to social welfare benefits, but I think we need to recognise that 120 Australians now -over that number actually - more than 120 Australians are fighting overseas. Those people are coming back.
We have people here on our own soil who are planning attacks or who are involved in supporting terrorist attacks overseas.
So, the threat is very real and we need to be realistic about the way in which we deal with that and the Prime Minister has said publicly, and indeed for a long period of time, that the Government is determined to act and we have done that in a number of ways by beefing up legislation to help our law enforcement and intelligence agencies to deal with those people and we are open to further changes and we are examining that right now.
JOURNALIST: Just on that point, I mean, I appreciate that this assessment is still underway, but would you anticipate, as Minister, that it's feasible for some action to be taken on this front?
PETER DUTTON: I think it is feasible, Paul, for us to be able to suspend some benefits and I think the Australian public would expect that.
For example, if you had somebody who was a long-term unemployed, who was taking money from a taxpayer through a disability support pension or through some sort of social welfare payment and at the same time they were preaching hate or they were doing harm otherwise or would seek to do harm to Australians then I think Australians would reasonably ask ‘why is my hard earned tax dollar going to provide support for that person?’
I think that's a proper discussion for us as a country to have. I think it needs to be measured and reasoned and ultimately the Government will provide a response which I believe will be adequate.
People have to ask whether or not it's appropriate to allow people to travel on an Australian passport if they are going to seek to do harm to somebody in France or the United Kingdom or in parts of Europe otherwise,
I think they are reasonable questions for us to ask; whether we would suspend travel rights for individuals as well.
So, I think this is a discussion that is only part-heard and the Government is working through, I think, with the support of the Australian public to implement sensible measures which will do whatever is possible within the law and within our international obligations to keep the Australian people safe.
JOURNALIST: How confident are you that the Government and, in particular, senior Ministers in the Cabinet are united on that principle?
PETER DUTTON: I think we are absolutely united. I think people want to make sure that we adhere to our obligations, our constitutional obligations as well as our international treaty obligations and all of us take that very seriously.
I think there is a broader discussion within the party and within the Australian community to be had.
As I say, there are still further steps that the Government may be minded to take in relation to citizenship and I think that is an important debate for everybody to be involved in because we need to get the balance right between people's rights and civil liberties and we need to make sure that at the same time we uphold the rights and civil liberties of those people who would be victims, who may fall victim to terrorists in our own country.
I think it's a responsibility that we take very seriously and that's, I think, a reflection of the Cabinet's approach as well.
JOURNALIST: Peter Dutton, on another issue before we let you go, I wanted to ask you about gay marriage.
We heard the news this morning that it looks like the Left of the Labor Party are binding their factional colleagues to support a binding party position on gay marriage in the next Parliament if, indeed, gay marriage is not adopted in this Parliament.
I wonder if that becomes Labor Party policy, and there is some speculation in the papers that Bill Shorten might not get his way on this issue and it will become Labor Party policy, does that change the dynamic in the Liberal Party?
For example, would the Liberal Party be more inclined to say ‘well, if Labor is going to bind post the next election we are not changing our position from a binding one against it’?
PETER DUTTON: Peter, I think what this conference demonstrates is that Bill Shorten is a good deal maker, but would he be a good Prime Minister?
I think so far people would have to say that he doesn't demonstrate the necessary qualities for leadership. So, we will wait and see what the Labor Party process is.
I've spoken about my personal position in relation to gay marriage. I've gone to subsequent elections, including the last election, where people voted for me and against me in relation to this issue, because I had said that I didn't support a change.
I don't think it would be appropriate for me to change my position mid-term if I was going to change my position, and I'm not minded to……
JOURNALIST: ….Do you support a conscience vote though, Peter Dutton?
PETER DUTTON: I believe there are processes for the individual and there is a process for the party and I support the current arrangement and I don't support a change of which that conscription takes place as the Labor Party would propose.
I think there are decisions for the party room to take place or for the leadership within the party, but I don't think this is a deal issue, which Mr Shorten has cast it as.
I think he is in a difficult conference, he is trying to give a win to the Left and a win to the Right, trying to please everybody in the middle and I think that ultimately is not the leadership quality that people would want in the run up to the next election.
I think from our party perspective we took a position to the last election, we should adhere to that position and we should adopt it going into the next election as well.
JOURNALIST: But you'd have to assume, wouldn't you, Peter Dutton, that if the Labor Party decides to bind in the next Parliament in favour of gay marriage you would have to think that conservatives, of which you'd probably include yourself, within the Liberal Party would be more inclined to avoid the conscience vote on your side because you'd feel that that was distorting the differences between the parties?
PETER DUTTON: Well, as I say Peter, what deals Bill Shorten can stitch up - he is a deal maker, we see that through the Royal Commission - but I don't want to comment on that, particularly in relation to what the Labor Party might do in the next Parliament.
I think what people are focused on now, certainly in the run up to the next election, bearing in mind that we are only 12 months or so away from the election, is issues that are important to them.
They want to know that they have got a job. They want to know that they can provide for their family. They want to know whether or not a party is going to increase electricity prices for their family. They want to know whether their family is going to be safe through appropriate measures governments can introduce to stop terrorists as best we can. They want to know that governments have the metal to stare down people smugglers and to keep our borders safe.
They’re the sorts of issues I think that will decide the next election and I think on all of those issues Tony Abbott has demonstrated outstanding leadership and Mr Shorten has been found wanting, particularly over the last couple of days.
So, that's what people will focus on over the next 12 months and I think the Government is in increasingly stronger position and we need to continue that fight against the Labor Party because now there are big differences between Bill Shorten and Tony Abbott in the run up to the next election.
JOURNALIST: Just in terms of finishing up, Minister, the Government is still significantly behind in the public opinion polls, around about 53/47, and this comes six months after Tony Abbott promised a new arrangement, a new deal, new consultation, listening to the Australian public. What's gone wrong?
PETER DUTTON: Well Paul, I think if you look back to a number of first term governments, including John Howard's Government in the period of '96 to '98, governments that undertake tough, but necessary reform, pay a price for that.
I think in the end though on election day people respect the fact that governments have been honest with people about the position that they inherited - we did have an enormous debt, there was six years of absolute dysfunction and chaos under Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard - and nobody can pretend that you can make all of the decisions and do that in an easy way within a short period of time.
The decisions we took in the first year Budget I believe have set us up very well now to make the sorts of announcements we made to benefit small business, the investments that we are making into trying to keep our borders safe and secure in the second Budget.
I think as we advance towards the next election people will see the difficult decisions that we have taken in the first 12 or 18 months are in the best interests of our nation.
I think as that realisation comes to fruition I think people do see a very strong position that the Government puts in terms of our claim to re-election as opposed to Mr Shorten's claim to election and I think as we advance towards the next election people will see that there is a big difference on boats between Tony Abbott and Bill Shorten, they will pay lower electricity prices under a Coalition Government compared to Labor. There is a lot more support for small business under the Coalition than there is under Labor.
If we stick to all of those key principles I believe we have a very strong claim for re-election at the next election and I think Mr Shorten is on the brink of some sort of rebellion from people like Tanya Plibersek and Anthony Albanese and people just don't want to return to that sort of dysfunction that they saw with Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard.
JOURNALIST: Immigration Minister Peter Dutton, you've been generous with your time, thanks for joining us on Australian Agenda.