Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s performance with President Trump in New York was weak and acquiescent, and did nothing to look out for Australia’s interests, Australian Greens Co-deputy Leader Senator Scott Ludlam said today.
“Watching Turnbull fawn over Trump and talk about our shared values was especially cringe-worthy. Which values of Trump’s does Turnbull share? The Prime Minister certainly isn’t speaking for most Australians.
“Australians don't value Trump’s enthusiasm for sexual assault. Australians don't value Trump’s compulsive dishonesty.
“Can the PM hear himself when he lauds President Trump’s commitment to the rule of law and democracy? This is the same Trump who dangerously undermined the US democratic system by lying about electoral fraud to inflate his own ego, and who questions the legitimacy of the legal system when a ‘so-called judge’ doesn’t rule in his favour.
“Trump has shown he has no desire to even pay lip service to international law when bombing Syria. On that reckless approach, Turnbull agrees with him. Trump shares this government’s disgraceful fearmongering around refugees and immigration.
"The President also shares Malcolm Turnbull’s fondness for acting in complete contradiction to the values he’s stated. Not long before Trump praised Australia’s healthcare system, the Prime Minister was applauding him for passing measures that will set back healthcare in the US for millions of people.
“This meeting was an opportunity for Malcolm Turnbull to start forging a more independent path on foreign policy. Instead, he subserviently promised to stand shoulder to shoulder with a volatile, ill-informed leader with a new enthusiasm for war and a determination to inflame tensions in our own region.
“Our Government, and the Opposition for that matter, need to take a stronger stand and begin to define our own place in the world, unshackled from an increasingly dangerous US alliance,” Senator Ludlam said.