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Senator calls on state premiers to put their money where their mouths are

Queensland Senator Matt Canavan has lashed out at “rogue” state and territory leaders refusing to come to the table over border closures.

He told Scott Emerson he supports the restriction of movement to and from clearly defined hotspots, not necessarily across state borders.

“Why are we managing a pandemic based on arbitrary lines drawn in the 19th century?”

A lack of consensus on borders within the National Cabinet has sparked debate over whether the federal government should be able to force the premiers’ hand.

Mr Canavan suggested the government instead responds by hitting where it hurts – the hip pocket.

Victoria, he argued, has now implemented the “longest lockdown in the world … and [are] doing so while they know they can send the bill to Canberra.”

“At some point we’ve got to say, well, if a premier wants to go rogue and go against the health advice … they should pick up the tab.”

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