Victorian Premier Dan Andrews and Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg are now openly biffing on with one other, using the media as their canvas to lob verbal bombs across state lines. But it’s Andrews who is walking away with the points this morning, after giving the Federal Treasurer an almighty tongue lashing over snarky comments regarding the gradual easing of coronavirus restrictions in Melbourne.
Following yesterday’s announcement that a raft of restrictions for Melburnians would be eased – including extending the 5km travel bubble out to 25km – Frydenberg launched a snarky attack on Victoria for not hastily ripping the band-aid off by re-opening all businesses immediately.
Appearing on Sky News this morning, Frydenberg bristled at Andrews over suggestions that the Federal Government’s re-opening plan (or lack thereof) was “not for Victoria.”
“Daniel Andrews doesn’t get to decide who is for Victoria. This sounds like a desperate distraction from a premier under real pressure. There has been a lot of legitimate criticism made of Victoria’s handling of this crisis,” Frydenberg asserted.
In a media appearance following that, Frydenberg went further, stating “the bloody-mindedness is unforgivable,” and that “there’s been a callous indifference in Victoria from the government to the loss of jobs and to the plight of small business.”
But in response, Andrews has gone to town on Frydenberg, blasting him as “just a Liberal” in an extraordinary rant.
During his daily press conference this morning, Andrews addressed the comments by stating “It’s all about the politics with this bloke, isn’t it? That’s all he does. That’s all he does, he is not a leader, he is just a Liberal. All he does is play politics, every day, and I just don’t think that is fair, and I don’t think that’s right, and I think Victorians are sick of it.”
Daniel Andrews on Josh Frydenberg:— Shuba Krishnan (@ShubaSKrishnan) October 19, 2020
“He’s not a leader, he’s just a Liberal, and all he does is play politics…”
Fed-Vic tensions rising over the trans-tasmin travel bubble. @SBSNews #auspol pic.twitter.com/qdaCmiweOl
Dan Andrews then addressed the issue of the Federal Government as a whole, and their constant political sniping at the Victorian Government over Melbourne’s roadmap out of restrictions.
“I would have thought I would not have to convince them that Victorians are Australians as well. I said last week I will start calling this out, and I am. You can’t be [out] there playing these political games running this political commentary and expecting that everyone in Victoria is just going to let it slide,” Andrews said, before adding “Josh Frydenberg can make all the comments he wants, that’s fine, but I will be calling them out.
“It is not helpful, it does not keep anyone safe and it doesn’t get the numbers down.”
Victoria recorded an additional four new cases of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, up on yesterday’s total of two. However the 14-day rolling average in Metro Melbourne has now dropped to 7.2.