Premier Mark McGowan looks set to capitulate to his east coast colleagues and won’t stand in the way of Federal Labor’s plan to stamp out the live animal export industry.
The Nationals WA agriculture spokesperson Colin de Grussa said the Premier’s “weak” comments on Perth radio this week proved Mr McGowan “couldn’t care less” about the State’s farmers and the thousands of jobs connected to live export.
“Bill Shorten has said if Labor wins next year’s Federal election he will phase out the live export trade – a large portion of which comes out of Western Australia and is worth hundreds of millions of dollars to the local economy,” Mr de Grussa said.
“Mr McGowan said on radio this week he would not be heartbroken if Mr Shorten’s plan came to fruition and that he could not commit full-throated support to the industry.
“Any lingering doubt over whether Mr McGowan would stand up to Mr Shorten and fight for WA jobs and our industry has now been extinguished.
“No ifs, ands, or buts. A vote for Labor at the next Federal and State election is a vote to end the live sheep and cattle trade.”
Mr de Grussa said many of Mr McGowan’s city-based MPs were angling to have their party follow the lead of Queensland Labor which voted to end all live animal exports at its State Conference earlier this year.
“Having not learnt the lessons from their disastrous ban on live cattle exports in 2011, Labor is again shaping up to ruin WA producers,” Mr de Grussa said.
“From debates in the Parliament it is obvious that the vast majority of Mr McGowan’s metro-dominated party room want live trade stamped out for good.
“It’s only a matter of time before the Premier capitulates to pressure from Mr Shorten, Queensland Labor and his own colleagues.
“Once again Labor’s true colours have been exposed: they are anti-farmers, anti-regional and anti-jobs.”