Australian politics live: Coalition faces fight over workplace reforms on last sitting day of year

Labor and the unions say contentious industrial relations bill will leave workers worse off. Follow latest updates

1.24am GMT

Is Christian Porter the fall guy if the legislation doesn’t get up?


Well, I’m responsible for the legislation, for the process that helped design the legislation, and it is early days with respect to a bill like this. And the it covers five of the most longstanding problems that exist in the system. The focus has been on four paragraphs and one page so far*. But can I tell you, there’s going to be plenty in it to keep everyone interested and alert over the next several months, as we deal with it. And it’s a process, as I indicated previously, of continuing the dialogue, the discussion, the consultation around the draft through the committee. But the five problems that we’re seeking to fix, they can’t be left unsolved. If we can’t fix those problems in a practical way, we allow barriers to job growth to persist in an economy that desperately needs them removed.

1.23am GMT

Christian Porter also says there has been too much focus on ‘one part’ of the IR bill – suspending the better off over all test – and not the rest of the legislation:

With respect to the omnibus bill there has been focus on one area and not a lot of focus on other areas, which in my observation would be more important, but, in any event, the government will keep that dialogue going, keep discussions occurring with all the parties and that work will continue over the summer. That will be difficult and detailed work which the government will be assisting with any way we can.

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