Warren and Lyn, you have both served Australia and our party so magnificently for so many years.
Warren retired from Parliament this year. When he announced his retirement he stepped down as Leader of the Nationals - a position he had held since 2007 - as Deputy Prime Minister, as Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development.
Warren’s commitment throughout his whole life has been one of nation building. Happiest when he is seeing things being built – he has big dreams.
He is a gentle man, a gentle soul but he gets fired up when he looks at the greatness that this nation can achieve when we put our hearts and backs into it. Big projects are what excites him.
He said when he announced his retirement in the House of Representatives that he had hoped to continue in office, he’d thought about continuing in office until he saw the first plane land at Western Sydney Airport in 2025. He thought that might be a bit long. But I’ve got no doubt, Warren, that you and Lyn will see those planes land and take-off. You’ll see your big visions realised.
All your lives you’ve stood up for people in regional and rural Australia and you’ve carried that out in the Parliament.
I remember in the days of the Howard cabinet how many great discussions and debates we had about water infrastructure and the future of water in Australia. Like your successor Barnaby Joyce, you share, we share a passion for water and the way it unlocks the future and the prosperity of Australia.
Lyn - Warren could’ve done nothing without you. You made everything he has done possible. You two are one of the great political couples of our times.
Warren, I know, just and I would say the same about myself and Lucy and John Howard would say the same about himself and Janette – you cannot do these big jobs in politics without a strong and supportive family. The politicians, as we all know are the volunteers - the families are the conscripts.
But Lyn - you and Warren have been so strong, so committed for our cause, for our people, for our nation. You have together built the nation we have today and put in place the projects that will make it greater still.
I’m so proud to be here today with you - so honoured to be in your company as you’re awarded life membership, each of you, of the LNP.