PRIME Minister Julia Gillard has been challenged by a local member of parliament to “demonstrate the same passion for jobs in the Latrobe Valley as she displayed to retain leadership of the Labor Party”.
Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester predicted continued instability in the Labor Party which he said would be due to Ms Gillard’s “fundamental breach of trust with the Australian people when she ruled out a carbon tax and then cut a deal with the Greens to introduce the new tax”, rather than the presence of former Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd.
“That’s why voters don’t trust her,” he said,while calling for an election to “fix the mess” of a “bitter and divided government” on show in the past weeks.
Mr Chester said nothing had changed in the wake of Ms Gillard’s win this week in the caucus ballot against Mr Rudd.
“Ms Gillard was prepared to fight hard to keep her own job, it’s just a pity that she doesn’t demonstrate any of that passion to help workers keep their jobs in the Latrobe Valley power industry,” he said.
“Under this government’s ‘contract for closure’ scheme, there will be hundreds of local workers who will lose their jobs if power station closures are approved, and the flow-on impact to smaller businesses will be devastating for our region,” Mr Chester said.