Covid Australia: Today show host Ally Langdon’s Anthony Albanese smackdown over pandemic payments
Ally Langdon’s Albo smackdown: TV host explodes PM as he blames Scott Morrison for move that will affect millions of Australians – then forces him to watch heartbreaking clip
- Vital financial lifeline of up to $750 a week for people in isolation ended June 30
- Anthony Albanese blamed the previous government for setting the end date
- But Today host Aly Langdon snapped back: ‘You’re in power now, Prime Minister’
- PM urged Woolies employee and NSW Labor leader urges to revive payments
Today host Allison Langdon struck Prime Minister Anthony Albanese with a devastating blow after blaming Scott Morrison for phasing out Covid benefits on June 30.
But Langdon hit back, “You’re in power now, Prime Minister.”
Pandemic leave payments and free rapid antigen testing for retirees were all ditched from July 1, despite the nation anticipating another massive outbreak.
Today host Aly Langdon struck Prime Minister Anthony Albanese with a devastating blow after blaming Scott Morrison for phasing out Covid benefits on June 30
Federal Health Minister Mark Butler predicted that millions of Australians will contract Covid within the next few weeks as the virulent new Omicron strains BA.4 and BA.5 flood the country.
But the new Labor government has refused to revive or expand the schemes, which paid up to $750 a week to those in isolation for seven days or more.
Now Mr Albanian is coming under mounting pressure to reverse the decision, with even NSW Labor leader Chris Minns demanding a reconsideration “for our health and economy”.
Today, host Langdon addressed the Prime Minister while in Fiji for the Pacific Island Forum on Thursday and asked whether the government had made a “big mistake” in implementing the decision.
Prime Minister Alnthony Albanian said he sympathized but said it was the previous government’s decision to end the financial lifeline for those isolated from Covid
“We don’t have that, we don’t have that,” said the prime minister. “What we inherited was a series of decisions by the former government on a timetable they worked out.
“We’ve inherited those decisions and we’ve inherited those decisions and we’ve inherited a trillion dollars in debt. We will continue to seek advice and monitor what is going on.’
Co-host Karl Stefanovic said the Australian Medical Association had labeled the decision “catastrophic”, but the prime minister insisted he was not at fault.
Health experts predict millions of Australians will contract Covid in the coming weeks as virulent new Omicron strains BA.4 and BA.5 flood the country
“It’s just a fact that we haven’t made a decision to lower payments,” he said.
“There were measures taken by the former government with end dates for them.”
Langdon grilled Albanian: ‘May I come back to that for a moment? I’m a bit confused, sorry Prime Minister, I’m a bit confused about that. You say no decision has been made?
“Are you arguing that these pandemic leave payments may continue?”
Anthony Albanese is coming under mounting pressure to reverse the decision, with even NSW state Labor leader Chris Minns (pictured) demanding a reconsideration
Albanian replied: ‘No. These decisions were made by the former government…’
But Langdon snapped, “You’re in power now, Prime Minister.”
The prime minister said the government would work with states and territories and seek health advice before making any future decisions.
But Langdon then played the Prime Minister a clip of Kiralee, a 21-year-old casual worker, who has been forced into Covid isolation while caring for her sister.
The Woolworths employee told the Prime Minister: ‘I just think he should reconsider and see that this affects so many people who are worse than me. I just think they need help.’
This video of Kiralee prompted Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to soften his tone
Anthony Albanese said the government would work with states and territories and seek health advice before making any future decisions
The prime minister said he sympathized but reiterated that it was the previous government’s decision to end the financial lifeline.
“Yes, people are going through a rough time,” he added. “This pandemic has presented Australians with challenges.
“Australians have responded fantastically to those challenges. And my government will continue to follow the health advice and take action based on that advice.
‘I can not do anything else. We will continue to monitor what is needed and take measures.’