Push-gate is ‘a stunt’

Lis­ter ac­cuses La­bor of poor pol­i­tick­ing

Stanthorpe Border Post - - NEWS -

SOUTH­ERN Downs MP James Lis­ter has struck back at al­le­ga­tions he “pushed” Queens­land La­bor MP Pe­ter Russo in a state bud­get es­ti­mates hear­ing on Thurs­day.

Mr Lis­ter said it’s a des­per­ate po­lit­i­cal ploy from his gov­ern­men­tal op­po­si­tion.

“I did put my hand on his shoul­der to get his at­ten­tion. Ev­ery­one was there and saw it,” Mr Lis­ter said.

“He could have kicked me out of the cham­ber as the chair if he wanted to but he didn’t.”

Mr Russo is chair of the Le­gal Af­fairs and Com­mu­nity Safety Com­mit­tee and was lead­ing Thurs­day’s hear­ing.

“He was try­ing to get my at­ten­tion,” Mr Russo told

The Courier Mail.

“He couldn’t get my at­ten­tion. He stood up and ba­si­cally pushed me on the left shoul­der to try and get my at­ten­tion.”

A La­bor spokesman said the Mem­ber for Toohey Mr Russo had writ­ten to the Speaker to make a com­plaint about a con­fronta­tion with Mr Lis­ter.

But yes­ter­day af­ter­noon Mr Lis­ter re­ceived word that the com­plaint had been de­clined.

“I am pleased that the Speaker of Par­lia­ment has de­clined to pro­ceed with Mr Russo’s al­le­ga­tions,” he said.

“I wasn’t even re­quired to re­spond be­fore the Speaker re­leased his state­ment.

“Chan­nel Seven’s footage of the event clearly shows that ab­so­lutely noth­ing hap­pened – no­body bat­ted an eye­lid at the time and the whole thing just was a silly at­tempt to use the me­dia to take the heat off the gov­ern­ment.

“I thank the many peo­ple who have con­tacted me to of­fer their sup­port.

“This (was) a com­plete fab­ri­ca­tion to dis­tract the me­dia away from La­bor’s abysmal es­ti­mates per­for­mance.”

Mr Lis­ter said it was a “ridicu­lous” po­lit­i­cal move.

“Yes, I was shocked but I am done talk­ing about it, I don’t want to dig­nify it, it is ridicu­lous,” he said.

“It’s just one of those silly games that gets played in pol­i­tics that makes me glad to get back to my elec­torate and away from them all down there.”

It is the sec­ond re­fer­ral to the Speaker stem­ming from last week’s ses­sion af­ter At­tor­ney-Gen­eral Yvette D’Ath also wrote to com­plain about Leader of Op­po­si­tion Busi­ness Jar­rod Blei­jie’s cuff links.

Mr Blei­jie’s cuff links were al­leged to been em­bla­zoned with the ini­tials “FU”, a pop cul­ture ref­er­ence to House of

Cards char­ac­ter Frank Un­der­wood.

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