National security must not be a political plaything

Reports today that a new Department of Homeland Security will be created in the next Turnbull government reshuffle should be deeply concerning to all Australians.

SHADOW ATTORNEY-GENERAL

SHADOW MINISTER FOR NATIONAL SECURITY

MEMBER FOR ISAACS

 

NATIONAL SECURITY MUST NOT BE A POLITICAL PLAYTHING

 

Reports today that a new Department of Homeland Security will be created in the next Turnbull government reshuffle should be deeply concerning to all Australians.

This is an idea that has been proposed and killed off by the Liberal Party before – as recently as 2014, when Foreign Minister Julie Bishop pointed out how unnecessary it was.

This is an obvious power grab by Peter Dutton. Australians should be concerned that national security is being used as the latest battleground for the Liberal Party to play out its internal divisions. Ensuring the safety and security of Australia and Australians is too important and must be above politics.

As a number of reviews in recent years have shown, our intelligence and enforcement agencies work extremely well together, and do a great job keeping Australians safe. Any case for change must be made on the basis that it is in Australia’s best security interests – the Government has not made such a case.  

Toying with our national security infrastructure is not something that should be done lightly – and it certainly should not be done as part of internal party political wars.

Mr Turnbull should stop worrying about appeasing the hard right of his party, and focus on ensuring existing, critical national security programs are adequately resourced – like properly funding de-radicalisation programs, for instance.

Mr Turnbull must stop Peter Dutton’s obsession with power getting in the way of keeping Australians safe. It’s too important.

What’s more important to Malcolm Turnbull – Peter Dutton’s interests or the national interest?

THURSDAY, 27 APRIL 2017