Treasurer defends secret polling behind COVID response
Neil Breen has confronted Treasurer Cameron Dick over reports the Queensland Government secretly polled constituents to inform its coronavirus response.
The Australian reports Queenslanders were polled 17 times since May last year to ‘shape the government’s approach’.
Neil recalled the Palaszczuk Government has previously maintained decisions are based on the Chief Health Officer’s advice alone.
“All governments do it, Neil,” said Mr Dick. “What we need to know, are Queenslanders heeding the call?”
“Every government needs to know that – whether our messages are getting through.”
The response didn’t convince Neil.
“This is finding out what we think, and this is obviously showing that the government’s making decisions based on what we think, not based on what the Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young [says].”
Press PLAY below to hear the clash in full
“None of it should matter,” Neil said. “If you’re only ever acting on the Chief Health Officer’s advice, what we think doesn’t matter.”
“[The Premier] doesn’t need polling at a cost of between $500,000 and $1 million to come up with communication strategies to tell the public.
“The communication strategy should be … ‘Dr Young has told me to shut the border, I’ve shut the border’.
“What else have you got to say?”
Press PLAY below to hear Neil’s comments
Opposition Leader David Crisafulli said he is “very cranky about this”.
“For the last few months, I’ve been asking one thing consistently: if you’re making decisions, please release the health advice.
“Turns out I was only half right – you’ve got to release the health advice and the spin advice, because apparently they both go together.”
Press PLAY below to hear the Opposition Leader slam the ‘politics’