THE state opposition will attack the Greens for being ”arrogant, self-indulgent … and impotent” as Labor unveils its bid to hold the seat of Melbourne in the July 21 byelection.
At today’s campaign launch, Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews will outline his party’s plan to capitalise on the Greens’ performance in the Senate on the asylum-seeker issue.
”This week in Federal Parliament, we got a close-up of the Greens in action,” Mr Andrews will say at the launch. ”It’s a dynamic where, according to the Greens, everyone must compromise except them. They’d rather protect their ideals than search for the common ground that might just protect the most vulnerable.”
Last Wednesday, independent MP Rob Oakeshott’s compromise immigration bill – which would have cleared the way for the government’s Malaysia refugee swap deal – passed the House of Representatives but was voted down in the Senate.
Mr Andrews said the Greens were like commentators with a ”purist” impractical view of the world rather than leaders prepared to make the hard decisions. ”Electing a commentator, a purist who can’t and won’t deliver outcomes – a Green will do nothing to get rid of [Premier Ted] Baillieu.”
In his address, Mr Andrews will point to hospitals, schools, TAFE, unemployment, infrastructure and support for the most vulnerable as areas where the Baillieu government has failed.
The seat of Melbourne has been in Labor hands since 1908, but the Greens have taken ground at the past three state elections.
The Liberal Party is not fielding a candidate in the upcoming byelection, which was prompted by the resignation of Bronwyn Pike.
The Greens candidate, Melbourne City councillor Cathy Oke, did not return calls yesterday.
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