Fear of WorkChoices drove Gillard to challenge Rudd

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Fear of WorkChoices drove Gillard to challenge Rudd

New Prime Minister Julia Gillard has said she was motivated to challenge Kevin Rudd for the position because she was concerned a Coalition Government would bring back WorkChoices.

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New Prime Minister Julia Gillard has said she was motivated to challenge Kevin Rudd for the position because she was concerned a Coalition Government would bring back WorkChoices.
 
Gillard told her first press conference in the new job that she acted because she believed the Rudd Government was ‘losing its way’.
 
She said she acted ‘because I believe fundamentally that the basic education and health services that Australians rely on and their decent treatment at work is at risk at the next election’.
 
Rights at work
 
‘I love this country and I was not going to sit idly by and watch an incoming Opposition cut education, cut health and smash rights at work.’
 
‘I came to the view that for the Australian nation I had a responsibility to step up, to take control and to make sure that this Government got back on track.’
 
‘And I believe too I’ve got a responsibility to make sure that at the next election, Labor is there at its strongest, putting its case as to why the Australian people cannot and should not risk the Opposition’s cuts to health and education and a return to WorkChoices.’
 
Gillard said she believed in consultation, and in talking to people and getting their best.
 
‘If we look at the workplace relations legislation, the getting rid of WorkChoices and the new Fair Work system, I consulted for hour after hour with business leaders, with union leaders, with small business leaders to get the balance right.’
 
Pragmatic
 
Gillard also signalled she would lead a pragmatic government that rewarded those people who put in an effort in their working lives to improve their lot.
 
‘I believe in a Government that rewards those who work the hardest, not those who complain the loudest,’ she said.
 
‘I believe in a Government that rewards those who, day in and day out, work in our factories and on our farms, in our mines and in our mills, in our classrooms and in our hospitals, that rewards that hard work, decency and effort.’
 
‘The people who play by the rules, set their alarms early, get their kids off to school, stand by their neighbours and love their country.’
 
‘Executed by union warlords’
 
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott said Gillard had been a co-author of the major policies of the Rudd Government, including the pink batts issue and the ‘school hall rip-offs’.
 
He said Rudd had been ‘executed by the union and the factional warlords’.
 
‘The style of the NSW Labor mafia has been well in evidence over the last 24 hours,’ he said.
 
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