23 February 2012
I support Julia Gillard one hundred percent as the leader of our party and as the Prime Minister. I always have, and I continue to do so.
The Prime Minister has worked tirelessly every day to deliver a strong economy that benefits all Australians. She has delivered key reforms including health care, laid the foundations for a National Disability Insurance Scheme, set a price on pollution through a carbon price that also benefits farmers through the Carbon Farming Initiative and helped Australians rebuild after the devastating floods and cyclone last year.
The next election will be a critical contest against an Abbott opposition determined to drag Australia back into the past. It is my strong belief that Julia Gillard is the best leader to take the Labor Party to success in the next election.
Further, as a Queenslander, I am acutely aware of the damage that this protracted leadership speculation is having on the state campaign. In that campaign, another Labor leader is strongly defending her state against an opposition that wants to drag that state into the past. The cloud of this leadership speculation does the Labor Party in Queensland no favours, and I am keen to see it brought to an end.
Today I have been busy as Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, working with key industry stakeholders in the forestry, dairy and beef sectors in Tasmania. This evening I am travelling to rural Victoria for an event with the Victorian Farmers Federation.
I look forward to Prime Minister Gillard continuing to strongly lead the country.