The gloves were off and the remarks pointed as the Nationals’ Brendon Grylls lambasted Liberal leaders over WA’s share of the GST from dawn to dusk last Friday. Mr Grylls, visiting local candidates James Hayward and Monique Warnock, headlined a BCCI breakfast in Bunbury before visiting Collie where Ms Warnock launched a campaign to bring the Bunbury gas pipeline extension to the town.
Back to Bunbury for the Inter Dominion announcement and a sundowner where Forrest member Nola Marino and prime minister Malcolm Turnbull were hauled over the coals, Turnbull being “no friend of WA” according to Mr Grylls.
Talking to the Mail yesterday, Ms Marino was sanguine, saying an extra $1.9 billion in GST compensation coming to WA was the result of Liberal lobbying.
“The Federal WA Liberal team is working hard to get a better deal for Western Australia. We lobbied the incoming Coalition Government after the 2013 election to give direction to the Grants Commission in relation to the distribution that has saved WA about $900 million over the past three years, and secured a compensation package for WA of $499 million last year and $490 million this year,” she said.
Bunbury Liberal candidate Ian Morison agreed.
“I welcome the PM’s commitment to a GST floor which will provide long term certainty to WA and enable us to maintain our nation leading public services including the best paid teachers, nurses and police officers in the country,” he told the Mail.
Questioned on the apparent strain in the alliance, Mr Grylls was not shy.
“Strain is good. I accept that and our challenge is to get through this period that we're in. I've got a big plan … I accept that that's not accepted by all of the political parties including Colin Barnett and the Liberals but that's ok. They do things we don't agree with either. Does that make instability or is that politicians doing what's right?”
But what of the coalition – sorry, alliance – partners and their absences?
Ms Warnock said everybody had been invited.
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