Opposition Leader Bill Shorten was the guest at today’s NSW Labor Conference in Sydney and let loose with a classic Labor crowd-pleaser: going hard at Treasurer Joe Hockey.
In a speech that almost, but didn’t quite, evoke the memorable rowdiness of Greens senator Scott Ludlam‘s speech welcoming Tony Abbott to WA, Mr Shorten described Mr Hockey as “arrogant” and “cigar-chomping” and said his charmed life had “robbed him of charity”.
In an authorised biography of the Treasurer released last week, he revealed he felt his widely-criticised budget didn’t go far enough and that the Prime Minister had intervened to stop deeper cuts to health, education and pensions.
“This arrogant, cigar-chomping Treasurer, his hopeless story reveals it took Tony Abbott to block him from deeper harder cuts. Seriously, if it’s up to Tony Abbott to tell you you’ve gone too far, you’ve well and truly gone too far… In Tony Abbott’s Australia, the less you earn – the more you pay,” Mr Shorten said.
A spokesman for Joe Hockey said he had “more important things to do than respond to a cheap personal attack from Bill Shorten”.
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