LNP Senator for Queensland Barry O’Sullivan says Federal Member for Kennedy Bob Katter is wilfully deceiving the people of his electorate by glossing over his poor attendance record, low vote attendance and non-existent lobbying efforts.
Senator O’Sullivan said the people of the Kennedy electorate would be appalled to know Mr Katter voted with Labor and the Greens 66 per cent of the time (or 61 times out of the 94 divisions) in which he was present between September 2013 and May 2016.
Senator O’Sullivan said Bob Katter sits with Clive Palmer as having the worst attendance record in Federal Parliament.
He said there were 399 divisions in parliament between September 2013 and May 2016.
Mr Katter was not present in the House for 305 of those 399 divisions. This is over 80 per cent of all divisions in the 44th parliament.
Senator O’Sullivan said 125 of the 305 divisions Mr Katter missed were divisions about legislation.
“These raw, hard figures speak for themselves – Bob Katter spends more time talking about his fabricated record than he does actually representing the people of the Kennedy electorate,” Senator O’Sullivan.
“My office has worked as a de-facto member with a large number of people, community groups and local authorities in the Kennedy electorate these past few years because they feel they cannot achieve anything locally as long as Bob Katter is their federal member.
“Mr Katter is clearly past his prime. He can’t even be bothered to turn up to parliament and do the basic amount of work.
“Bob Katter’s attendance record is a running joke in Canberra.
“With such a despicable record as this, why does Mr Katter think voters should give him three more years?”
Senator O’Sullivan said Mr Katter’s speaking record in parliament reflects his poor attendance record.
According to his own figures, Bob Katter has spoken only 47 times in parliament between September 2013 and May 2016.
Compare this to Senator Ian MacDonald has spoken in the chamber 128 times and Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry, who has spoken in the chamber 114 times in the same period.
Senator Barry O’Sullivan, who only came into parliament in February 2014, and has spoken 90 times.
Minister for Norther Australia Senator Matt Canavan, who entered parliament in July 2014, has spoken in the chamber 91 times.
Senator O’Sullivan said Mr Katter’s record of achievement document included 190 dot points of funding received for the Kennedy electorate in the 44th Parliament.
Senator O’Sullivan said Mr Katter was not involved in lobbying efforts nor in the decision-making for virtually every single one of those 190 achievements.
Senator O’Sullivan said it was a record written in invisible ink.
He said the only way Mr Katter could prove his involvement in lobbying efforts for these projects was to provide evidence of the meetings he has held with relevant ministers.
Senator O’Sullivan called on Mr Katter to release his diaries from the past three years to provide voters with an insight into what he does with all his free time, other than the publicity stunts he is well known for.
“For too many years Bob Katter has been able to make false claims and deceive the people of his electorate,” Senator O’Sullivan said.
“Bob has been deceitful about his military record and he continues to be deceitful about his conduct in parliament.
“It’s time for Bob to put up or shut up. I make my diaries public every time I release my Bush Telegraph newsletter. I don’t just make claims – I back them up with evidence.
“I call on Bob Katter to release his diaries to the media to provide evidence to support his claims of achievement.
“I believe Bob Katter doesn’t have the stomach to provide the media with access to his diaries because he knows it would expose his laziness.”
Senator O’Sullivan said Bob Katter “overwhelmingly” lost the primary vote at the last election because the people of Kennedy want a seat in government.
“I have travelled through the Kennedy electorate these past few weeks and people are sick and tired of being left out of the decision-making process of government,” Senator O’Sullivan.
“The time has come for change in Kennedy.”