Senator BABET (Victoria—United Australia Party Whip) (16:38): Obviously, I rise here in support of Senator Hume’s matter of public importance. The only constant in Australian politics seems to be broken promises. The Dunkley by-election is quickly becoming less of a political poll and more of an IQ test. Are the people of Dunkley really so naive as to believe the empty promises and meaningless reassurances of this government?

The Prime Minister has spent weeks insisting that he should be rewarded for having a plan to reduce the cost of living. A plan? What plan? Where’s the plan? The failed referendum wasn’t about the cost of living. His countless overseas trips haven’t been about the cost of living. The Labor Party’s insane immigration policies don’t constitute a plan to reduce the cost of living. Minister Bowen’s reckless renewable energy obsession is not making the cost of living any better; it’s making it worse. Repeating that you have a plan over and over is not the same as actually having a plan. The people of Dunkley are smart enough to realise this, and I expect that they will mark the government down for it when they step into the ballot box.

After almost two years of this government—two painful years—the people understand that the Prime Minister is all announcement but no delivery, always spruiking a plan that never materialises, always talking about how much he feels for people doing it tough, and then the next minute he’s sitting courtside at the tennis or dancing the night away at a private performance with Katy Perry. Like I said, the people of Dunkley are not stupid, and God willing they will not fail the test on Saturday.

I’m no big fan of the Liberal Party—that much is clear—but do you know what? They’re a whole lot better than the alternative.