- Labor and Green political leaders and Environmental leaders such as Greenpeace's CEO Kumi Naidoo have condemned the comments and called for an apology. Pacific Islanders with 350Pacific have called for Minister Dutton to resign over the offensive climate remarks.
Sunday Update: Dutton makes an apology of sorts
- Here is my post on Dutton's 'apology' made on Skynews on Sunday morning:
The Background story on Friday:
- A lunchtime press conference on Abbott's decision to accept 12,000 Syrian refugees went awry today. As the press conference was running late Immigration Minister Peter Dutton remarked that it was running to "Cape York time". Tony Abbott responded, "we had a bit of that up in Port Moresby".
Dutton then added, "time doesn't mean anything when you're about to have water lapping at your door". to watch the Prime Minister laughed.
Then Social Services Minister Scott Morrison pointed out to both men that there was a microphone overhead. You could see Dutton face change...
It may have been a private conversation but it revealed the disdain that Abbott and Dutton feel for our neighboring countries and their leaders and for the people of the Pacific.
Once the video was published condemnation from all sides was swift.
Reaction and condemnation by the Twitterati was swift
- The Labor Party responded with both Federal Opposition leader Bill Shorten and Richard Marles, Shadow Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, tweeting derogatory comments on the interaction.
- The Greens also responded with Richard Di Natale calling for an official apology.
- Greens spokeperson on Climate Change Senator Larissa Waters issued the following statement:
“These people are not governing for the good of Australia. They smoke cigars to celebrate their cruel budget, then they laugh about the effect their policies are having on people and our planet,” Senator Waters said.
“It’s disgusting and they know it’s wrong. Why else would they be scared of a boom mic?”
“What else are these clowns saying when the microphones are off? Imagine what Cabinet meetings must be like.
“What we’ve seen today is raw contempt for the survival and safety of our Pacific Island neighbours and our own coastal communities.
“We’re talking about peoples’ lives, and this government is laughing.
“It’s a huge diplomatic blunder that will enrage our Pacific Island neighbours, who have been calling on Australia to save their homes. What an insult for them to now hear the Australian Prime Minister laughing at the prospect of their homes going underwater.
“The mask has absolutely come off today. The government knows what it will cost to deliver for their fossil fuel donors, and they’re intent on doing it anyway.
“It’s now clear to everyone how impossible it will be for Abbott’s Australia to have any credibility at the UN climate talks in Paris later this year.
“This is the man we sent to the UN in Geneva this week to negotiate about refugees’ lives, for goodness sake.
“Abbott and Dutton are clowns, but they’re the only ones laughing,” Senator Waters said.