Liberal Leader Will Hodgman has embarrassed himself and the Liberals by recycling one of former Liberal Premier Ray Groom's failed policies, Australian Greens Deputy Leader Christine Milne said today.
"Not only is it a King Canute strategy to try to prevent dissent against logging of native forests in an age when this is seen as increasingly ecologically abhorrent, but it is also embarrassing since it highlights a big Liberal failure.
"It failed once and it will fail again as it will infringe national competition policy.
"Ray Groom went into the 1992 election promising to get tough on forest protesters following the Liberal and Labor passage of resource security legislation. Like Hodgman, Ray Groom thought he could accelerate logging whilst suppressing dissent and silencing protesters.
"The Liberals then enacted the most draconian forest protest laws in the country, making protests a criminal offence with heavy penalties and compensation to woodchip companies.
"These laws were later repealed because they infringed national competition policy because by taking away democratic rights in Tasmania, the Tasmanian loggers had secured an unfair advantage over their mainland counterparts.
"This embarrassing episode taints Ray Groom's premiership.
"Will Hodgman does not represent generational change, he is a continuation of last century Liberal Party "born to rule, silence and destroy" policy. It failed then and it will fail now."