Is it an ETS model, idiot?
Malcolm Turnbull’s presentation on his plan B for an emissions trading scheme got a “gratifying grunt of approval” from his party room this morning - which is really the best he could have hoped for.
In fact he’s lucky the meeting did not get a lot worse than Wilson Tuckey’s outburst, he was angrily railing against any ETS whatsoever according to Coalition sources.
While on the one hand the Coalition has released the Frontier Economics report as plan B to the Government’s ETS legislation it is failing to commit to the plan as part of its own alternative. The Coalition is just setting itself up for a savaging of the kind it received from the Government in question time today.
The current stance of the Coalition on the ETS is that that the Frontier report will form the backbone of some kind of alternative and it will continue to “constructively engage” on the topic, but it’s entirely unclear what it actually wants to take out of the report.
There is no commitment to amendments and no party position other than they will block the current ETS proposal put up by the Government.
The strategy seems to be to vote it down this sitting and hope like hell they can get some acceptable amendments using parts of the Frontier report and pass it later in the year.
This would hopefully be in November and therefore before the Copenhagen meeting, meaning then Rudd can’t blame them for going to Copenhagen without an ETS and dodge a double dissolution on the issue.
If this sounds confused it’s because it is confused.
Kevin Rudd and Peter Garrett rightly attacked this stance because it does not make any sense.
Why associate yourself so closely to a new proposal only days out from the Senate vote on the ETS and then come out and say you haven’t made your mind up on an alternative model or even amendments?
Opposition Environment Minister Greg Hunt went as far as to attack the Government for delays in brining the ETS into Parliament. Garrett rightly rebutted that this was coming from the side that has no policy.
Turnbull already has to deal with outright opponents of an ETS in Tuckey and the Nationals, so the decision to set himself up for a further complication on such an important piece of policy seems confused at best.
Note: The model idiot is a Zoolander quote, not calling anyone an idiot.
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