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Pressure on Barnett to soften Abetz’s energy stance

  • Liberals must find common ground on NEG
  • Tasmania’s interests must come before ideology
  • Long-time issues between Barnett, Abetz

Shadow Minister for Energy David O’Byrne has urged Tasmanian federal and state Liberals to find common ground over the National Energy Guarantee (NEG).

“Energy Minister Guy Barnett must pressure his former Senate colleague Eric Abetz to soften his hardline stance against renewable energy,” Mr O’Byrne said.

“It is time to stop focusing on ideology and start focusing on what’s best for Tasmania.”

In 2010, then-Senator Barnett expressed his frustration with the factional nature of the Liberal Party in Tasmania:

“We do need an independent review, we need a shakeup in Tasmania. The alarm bells are ringing.

“In my view his [Eric Abetz] power and influence is very significant, and with that power and influence you have to take responsibility.

“The Abetz faction is just too powerful and too significant, and that has ramifications for all of Tasmania.”*

“If Liberals can’t even work together, what hope does the NEG have?” Mr O’Byrne said.

*Audio:  http://www.abc.net.au/local/audio/2010/08/23/2990680.htm