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Sunrise with Natalie Barr

Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash
Transcript

E&OE

Subjects: Vaccine Mandates

NATALIE BARR: With the Opposition claiming the PM is being held hostage by anti-vaccine liberal MPs. a group of rebel senators led by Queensland’s Gerard Rennick, is vowing to vote against government legislation unless more is done to overturn vaccine mandates. The government has already agreed to change its compensation policy for people who suffer a loss in income due to an adverse vaccine reaction. Attorney General Michaelia Cash joins us from Parliament House in Canberra this morning. Morning to you Michaelia. Now, the government really looks like its being held to ransom here over vaccine mandates by this handful of rogue MPs. Is that the case?

MINISTER CASH: No, not at all. I come from a broad church in the Liberal Party and we will work with any member of parliament who has a view that differs from what the government position is. And in fact, in the Senate this week, we have successfully worked with fellow senators who have a different view. I've already passed two pieces of vital national security legislation and today I look forward to passing a further piece of national security legislation. So the parliament continues to function as it should.

NATALIE BARR: Michaelia, it's a bit more than that, isn't it? Because one of them has been posting disinformation on his Facebook page that he admits he doesn't even know the content of and admits it's wrong. He's had to take some down the other one, Christiansen is calling for civil disobedience. Don't you think the Prime Minister should maybe be stepping in here and reining them in?

MINISTER CASH: The Prime Minister has made his position in relation to vaccination very, very clear. Vaccination in Australia is voluntary. However, we encourage all Australians and I'm in Canberra at the moment where we have an incredibly high vaccination rate to get vaccinated for COVID-19. Of course, there are certain sectors of society where it is really important because of the vulnerability so for example, aged care disability care, where we really do need you to get vaccinated, and that is why working with state and territory governments, we've seen mandates implemented, but the Prime Minister has been incredibly strong on this issue.

NATALIE BARR: Why haven't you mandated in Parliament House? I can't go to a shop down the road. Most people in Victoria can't go into shops without having to check in and show a vaccine certificate. What if it's good enough for all of us? Why isn't it good enough for you guys?

MINISTER CASH: Well, again, I am personally vaccinated. I am very proud to be vaccinated. My team here in Parliament House and back in Western Australia are vaccinated. The Prime Minister is very clear, vaccination in Australia is voluntary. But of course we encourage every Australian to get out there and get vaccinated. And you just have to look at the vaccination rates for example, in New South Wales, even in Victoria, in the ACT and across Australia. Australians are doing well and we need to continue to work with them.

NATALIE BARR: Okay Michaelia Cash. Thank you for your time this morning.

MINISTER CASH: Great to be with you.