After Prime Minister Scott Morrison went down in history as the first PM to lose a vote (for the Medevac bill) on the floor of the House of Representatives for many decades, he tried to convince that electorate that it was necessary to open up the detention centre on Christmas Island. This was despite the security services telling him that this was unnecessary, as anyone transferred for medical treatment could be returned to Manus and Nauru at the end of their treatment. Morrison went ahead with it anyway. The reopening of Christmas Island was likely to cost as much as $1.4 billion. Of course, Morrison blamed it all on the Labor Party for supporting the Medevac bill which had been submitted to the parliament by the Member for Wentworth, Independent Kerryn Phelps1. At the time the bill was passed, Morrison and some of his ministers stated that it would lead to the floodgates being opened with hundreds of inmates from Manus and Nauru coming to Australia never to be sent back, along with the restarting of the people-smuggling boats1.
In yesterday’s budget, Morrison has said that if re-elected he will repeal the Medevac legislation and close down Christmas Island detention centre, thereby ‘saving’ $1.2 billion. The cost of its opening would therefore be reduced from $1.4 billion to $185.2 million2. I suspect that should anyone else win the federal election, Christmas Island will be closed down anyway, without the need to repeal the Medevac bill. Why? Well you may ask! It is because, despite the warnings of floods of asylum seekers and boats, none of this has happened. Only one person has been transferred for medical treatment under the new legislation in the month since it passed. A single person3.
This Christmas Island debacle was just another laughably childish stunt to frighten the voters with more dog-whistle stories of floods of brown people (Muslims no less!). This was simply a dummy spit by Morrison who was upset that he would go down in history as a PM who lost a vote in the House of Representatives for the first time since the 1940s. Now he is trying to convince people that if they vote the government in again, he will ‘save’ the nation $1.2 billion by closing down a facility that he shouldn’t have opened in the first place. That dummy spit by Morrison has already cost the nation over $185 million, just for a political stunt so he would not feel so bad. It cost every man, woman and child in the nation just short of $7.50. It is a disgraceful use of taxes you and I have paid, solely so Morrison can shout abuse at the opposition. I have been watching politics for 40 years and never have I seen a more inept, puerile, and corrupt government. The sooner they are gone, the better.