‘When our farmers bleed, we bleed’: Deputy PM at drought forum

FORUM TALK: Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack at the drought forum in Attunga hall this morning. Photo: Peter Hardin 070818PHA129The Deputy PM and federal Nationals leader saida series of forums that began in Attunga today showed the party’s “care and support and love” for drought-affected people and places.

But Michael McCormack wouldn’t be drawn on what further federal drought assistance was being discussed – although acknowledging that even if the drought broke today, it would be “an issue …years into the future”.

Mr McCormack, on a day-tripfor the first of the Navigating the Drought forums, said he urged people to seek help at their nearest event.

“It’s not just about farmers:it’s also about small businesses, it’s also about families, it’s also about entire communities. This goes way beyond the farm gate.”

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He pointed to his attendance at the event andthat of state MP Kevin Anderson and federal MP Barnaby Joyce.

“You’ve seen this community forum today, set up by National Party members … when our farmers bleed, National Party members bleed, too,” he said.

‘We want to help you; we want to partner with you.’ Deputy PM @m_mccormackmp at Attunga NSW #drought forum: how this region is ‘epicentre’ of the big dry, the govt’s input & who the forums aim to help. #auspol#agchatozpic.twitter出售老域名/g0ADXJFLZZ

— Carolyn Millet (@CarolynMillet) August 7, 2018‘Above politics’“We’ve all got a stake in this: we very much feel the full effects of a drought, as do regional Liberals.

“This isn’t just political; this has gotta be above politics… This is a drought that hasn’t been felt in living memory since 1965.”

Mr McCormacksaid he didn’t want to “pre-empt anything that we may or many not do”in future federal aid.

Asked about possible help for small rural and regional businesses feeling the pinch, hereferred to the $12,000 lump-sum payments announced on Sunday for Farm Household Allowance recipients.

#Attunga#ruawarewecare#agchatoz#auspol great to see strong media presence at Attunga community drought forum today making sure word gets out to broader community to help farmers, those in the regions and elsewhere who rely on them @[email protected]@PRIME7Tamworthpic.twitter出售老域名/0JXRdAMnCP

— Michael McCormack (@M_McCormackMP) August 7, 2018History repeating?Mr McCormack said that, on the plane between Sydney and Tamworth this morning, a farmer had shared a story with him.

“In 1965, the drought broke on August 19 and it rained for six weeks,” he said.

“Fingers crossed;August 19 is not far away.

“Let’s just hope and pray that history repeats itself.”

Northern Daily Leader

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