Article – Fluoro man fishes for Tassie vote

by 9 August 2013

August 9, 2013
Andrew Tillett
The West Australian

Tony Abbott’s campaign-of-cliche roadshow rolled into northern Tasmania yesterday, promising to take the Apple Isle out of the economic basket case.

Fluoro colours may have fallen out of fashion about the same time the Berlin Wall came down but Mr Abbott is doing his best to bring them back into popularity, spending his fourth day running surrounding himself with the high-vis set.

Another theme emerging to his campaigning is it literally stinks.

After Monday’s visit to a Brisbane slaughterhouse, for his showpiece event yesterday the Opposition Leader subjected himself, his staff and the media to another assault on the senses, a fish factory in Devonport.

Mr Abbott watched workers fillet prime Atlantic salmon but unlike previous stunts where he has joined in, opted not to try his hand at gutting.

Instead, the message was about jobs, or more precisely, the lack of them in Tassie. After speaking that morning of making Tasmania a “special economic zone”, Mr Abbott stressed this should not be confused with Gina Rinehart’s vision of a workers’ paradise in northern Australia.

His plan was all about special projects for Tassie and making it easier for people to invest their money. He would announce his growth plan for the State next week. As a teaser, he revealed a plan to pay bosses who hire long-term dole recipients a $250 a fortnight wage subsidy after that person had been with them six months.

He hoped 2000 Tasmanians would find work but, of course, that requires making two people unemployed: the Labor members for Bass and Braddon, the State’s battleground seats.

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