Australian Government coat of arms

Prime Minister of Australia

The Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP

Radio interview with Jonesy and Amanda WSFM 101.7

22 September 2017

Prime Minister

Subjects:

Caloundra visit; Same-sex marriage campaign; Tony Abbott; Sydney Roosters

E&OE

AMANDA KELLER: It’s the Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, good morning!

BRENDAN JONES: No doubt you’re ringing to wish us good luck on our holidays?

PRIME MINISTER: I am, I am. I’m just up here in Caloundra in Queensland looking at some of the big investments we’re making into the Bruce Highway up here, big expansions and huge investment in infrastructure right around Australia, including in Queensland. But Caloundra is a great place for a holiday. You should come here.

AMANDA KELLER: My dad used to live there.

PRIME MINISTER: Did he?

BRENDAN JONES: You could go and see Mr Keller.

PRIME MINISTER: That’s a good idea.

AMANDA KELLER: Beautiful. Now, what about this assault on Tony Abbott? As a ‘yes’ supporter, as you are, as I am, what a pain in the head this has been for our cause.

PRIME MINISTER: Look, we condemn it. Everyone, every Australian condemns that.

AMANDA KELLER: Yes.

PRIME MINISTER: There’s no place in Australia for that kind of violence. We have to conduct this debate with respect and overwhelmingly Australians are. This is – just one incident is one too many. There have been several and they are absolutely to be condemned. I’ve been in touch with Tony, I’ve been in touch with the Police Commissioner and I look forward to the assailant being identified and charged and brought before the courts. There is no place in our political life for this kind of violence.

AMANDA KELLER: No.

BRENDAN JONES: And you’re not just saying you’re in Caloundra so no one thinks that you did it? It’s your alibi?

[Laughter]

PRIME MINISTER: Yeah well, I know we love to have a laugh, but it’s not a laughing matter. Whether it’s a politician or a young person or just a citizen, there is no place for violence in our political life. You know, we resolve our differences peacefully. Now I was at the Caloundra RSL last night, big crowd, several hundred people there with Ted O’Brien and Andrew Wallace who are the two MPs from our side that represent the Sunshine Coast electorates. A good crowd, mostly talked about energy. There was some discussion of the same sex marriage issue. There were people who presented the ‘yes’ side, people who presented the ‘no’ side. Each side listened to the other with respect and it was a good night had by all. That’s the Australian way; mutual respect.

AMANDA KELLER: It is, it would be good just with a sign of the pen you could make all this go away, you could just –

BRENDAN JONES: Yeah, you are the Prime Minister –

AMANDA KELLER: You could get rid of this debate.

PRIME MINISTER: With a sign of a pen, everyone has the same say. I said at the election we’d give everybody a say. We’re doing that. Lucy and I will be voting yes, but we absolutely respect the views of those who will be voting ‘no’.

AMANDA KELLER: But lets talk the juicy stuff. Roosters, what’s happening.

PRIME MINISTER: Yes!

AMANDA KELLER: You’re a Roosters supporter, I’m a Roosters supporter. Do you think we’ll get into the grand final?

PRIME MINISTER: Well we’ve got to beat the Cowboys, that’s the key. I went down to their training session last week and it was terrific. It was funny actually, it reminded me of the gym where Rocky trained, you know, it was a really gritty environment and Robbo was saying that’s all part of the, you know, the conditioning and the vibe there. They invited me to do weights with them.

[Laughter]

BRENDAN JONES: Really?

AMANDA KELLER: How did you go?

PRIME MINISTER: Yeah, well some of them are Game of Thrones fans so I said to them: “I’m one of the wise men with skinny arms.” So I didn’t get into the weights. At least not at their level, not at their level, I do a bit.

[Laughter]

BRENDAN JONES: When you said the gym, I hope it was the gym in Rocky I, not the gym in Rocky III, cos’ that’s when he got his backside kicked. You know, he got too Hollywood.

PRIME MINISTER: No, it was the old gym with the old boxing –

BRENDAN JONES: Rocky I gym, just a mattress up against the wall.

PRIME MINISTER: Yeah the Roosters have got a – you know – their football headquarters just there next to the football stadium in Moore Park and it’s an older building. Look it’s good, but they’re great guys. They were very thoughtful. Boyd Cordner presented me with some tiny Roosters jerseys for the grandkids and we had a good discussion about North Korea, Donald Trump and international affairs, leadership, the mind game -

BRENDAN JONES: Jeez!

PRIME MINISTER: You know, how you deal with stress. It was a really good discussion.

AMANDA KELLER: Did you get into the ice bath with them?

[Laughter]

PRIME MINISTER: No, I didn’t.

BRENDAN JONES: Nah, that’s Amanda’s job.

[Laughter]

AMANDA KELLER: That’s my dream.

BRENDAN JONES: No man wants to get into an ice bath because it shrinks everything.

[Laughter]

AMANDA KELLER: Great.

BRENDAN JONES: Thanks for calling us Malcolm, thank you for your best wishes.

PRIME MINISTER: Yeah, that’s good. Now, now that the Sharks are out, are you going to be backing the Roosters? That’s what we want to know.

BRENDAN JONES: Well, yes. I’m a de facto Roosters supporter because the Roosters mucked up and gave us James Maloney and in turn we won the grand final on the strength of that. So I’m not a full –

PRIME MINISTER: Right, well that’s good that shows you’re a man of conviction and you recognise that one good turn deserves another.

AMANDA KELLER: Quite right.

BRENDAN JONES: It shows that I’ve flip-flopped a bit, so I could be politician after all this.

[Laughter]

PRIME MINISTER: Well listen, good luck and have a great break.

BRENDAN JONES: Thank you.

PRIME MINISTER: And go the mighty Roosters.

AMANDA KELLER: Exactly, thank you Prime Minister.

BRENDAN JONES: Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, thank you.

PRIME MINISTER: Thanks a lot Jonesy, thanks Amanda, bye.