Another day on the Federal campaign trail and another day of backflips, faulty memories, and emotion. Malcolm Turnbull was in central Queensland talking dams, while Bill Shorten campaigned in the Top End.

Hannah Kotaidis reports.


Barnaby Joyce was speaking during the Regional Leaders Debate last night.

Barnaby Joyce, Deputy Prime Minister: “Might I remind you that when we closed down the live animal export industry, it was around about the same time that we started seeing a lot of people arriving on boats in Australia.”

Chris Uhlmann, ABC Journalist: “Do you realise that you are suggesting that the Indonesian Government then unleashed the boats in response?”

Barnaby Joyce, Deputy Prime Minister: “I think it’s absolutely the case we created extreme bad will with Indonesia.”

This morning, both Mr Joyce and his Prime Minister had to perform some verbal gymnastics, about the comments.

Barnaby Joyce, Deputy Prime Minister: “I’m not saying that this caused the Indonesians to start sending people across, I’m not suggesting that.”

But the opposition leader was quick to jump in.

Bill Shorten, Opposition Leader: “When he starts weighing in to foreign policies, I think he should best leave that to the grown ups in the room.”

But it wasn’t all smooth sailing for the Labor party.

With a front-bencher stumbling through an interview.

Sky Interviewer: “Will labor keep the school kids bonus?”

David Feeney, Labor Front-Bencher: “Well, I, you’d have to refer to our relative shadow.”

Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister: “They’re in chaos at the moment as you’ve seen, their shadow ministry doesn’t know what their budget plans are.”

Later in Darwin, the opposition leader provided support, for retiring Northern Territory senator Nova Peris.

She broke down, while speaking about her tough decision.

Nova Peris, Outgoing Labor Senator: “Three years ago I walked into parliament as the first Aboriginal woman and until you are an Aboriginal person, do not criticise me for the decision I have made.”

Hannah Kotaidis, QUT News.