Tony finally pays Ipswich a visit
FEDERAL opposition leader Tony Abbott has finally made his way back to Ipswich, more than five years since he last visited the city.
Mr Abbott's last visit was on November 6, 2007, when he visited St Andrew's Hospital when he was health minister in the former Howard government.
He visited Gatton on June 14, 2011 but hasn't been in the city on official business since Labor won office on November 24, 2007.
Yesterday he was at the Capral Aluminium plant in Bundamba with candidate for Blair Teresa Harding.
"I was very pleased that Teresa Harding, our excellent LNP candidate in Blair, invited me to visit the electorate today. This gave me an opportunity to talk to the workers at Capral Aluminium and explain the Coalition's positive plans for a stronger economy and a stronger Australia," Mr Abbott said.
He said an LNP government would get rid of the carbon tax but keep the tax cuts and associated pension and benefits.
Mr Abbott praised Mrs Harding, saying, "She's a local, she's committed, she's knowledgeable".
"She's worked in both the private and public sector, she's got experience of small business, she's a family person," he said. "Not only does she have kids, but she's got a husband who has just come back from Afghanistan. What a marvellous Australian family. What a great representative for Blair she will make. I'm very proud to be standing here with Teresa."
Member for Blair Shayne Neumann scoffed at Mr Abbott's belated visit.
"It's taken him five years, six months and 16 days to finally make his way to Ipswich," Mr Neumann said.
"And it's very interesting he's travelled on the section of the Ipswich Motorway that he opposed to upgrade in Federal Parliament for years.
"The Labor Government has put a down-payment on it. Why won't Tony Abbott and the candidates for Blair and Oxley commit to funding the Darra to Oxley section of the Ipswich Motorway?"