JOURNALIST In terms of Minister Brough asking James Ashby or not asking James Ashby to procure Peter Slipper’s diaries. He’s told one thing to the media and another thing to Parliament. Have you or any other member of the leadership team clarified with him exactly what role he played?
JULIE BISHOP These matters have been the subject of public discussion for many years now. I understand there is a police investigation underway. It would be totally inappropriate for me to make public statements about this matter. The Labor Party well knows when people are under police investigation, or when there is a police investigation underway, that should be allowed to proceed without public interference. There have been members of the Labor Party subject to Royal Commissions, police investigations and the like. We should allow the due process to take its course and that’s what I intend to do and I have no further comment on the matter.
JOURNALIST Has the Prime Minister’s response been adequate?
JULIE BISHOP I have no further comment on the matter. The Prime Minister of course has responded appropriately.
JOURNALIST In terms of the summer break coming up, do you expect a bit of campaigning from both sides?
JULIE BISHOP Campaigning? Well obviously 2016 is an election year so most of us spend as much time as we can in our electorates. As Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party I spend a lot of time visiting electorates across Australia and that will continue throughout the summer break, although I do hope that Australians have an opportunity to take some time off and spend time with their families and loved ones, and let’s hope that we have a safe and secure Christmas break.
JOURNALIST As Deputy Leader are you more happy with the state of the Party at the end of the year than you were at the start?
JULIE BISHOP The Australian people are responding in a very positive way to the optimistic, confident, narrative of Prime Minister Turnbull. Next week we will be releasing a national innovation and science agenda to capture the creative, innovative, spirit of the Australian people and drive economic growth and drive opportunities and I hope that 2016 will be a more prosperous, more secure and happier year for everyone across Australia.
JOURNALIST Do you welcome the British vote to allow bombing of ISIL?
JULIE BISHOP I’m pleased that there has been support for increased air strikes in Syria and that the Coalition is expanding its efforts. Australia is already the second largest military contributor to the campaign against ISIL in the US-led Coalition so the more Coalition members who take part in the military operations obviously the better that will be in order to degrade and ultimately defeat ISIL the terrorist organisation.
- Minister's office: (02) 6277 7500
- DFAT Media Liaison: (02) 6261 1555