Ally Langdon’s Albo smackdown: TV host blasts PM as he blames Scott Morrison for move that will affect millions of Aussies – and then forces him to watch heartbreaking clip
- Vital financial lifeline of up to $750 a week for those in isolation ended June 30
- Anthony Albanese blamed previous government for setting end date deadline
- But Today host Aly Langdon snapped back: ‘You’re in power now, Prime Minister’
- PM urged to revive payments by Woolies worker and NSW state Labor leader
Today host Allison Langdon hit Prime Minister Anthony Albanese with a devastating smackdown after he blamed Scott Morrison for axing Covid benefits on June 30.
But Langdon hit back: ‘You’re in power now, Prime Minister.’
Pandemic leave payments and free rapid antigen tests for pensioners were all dumped from July 1 despite the nation staring down another huge outbreak.
Today host Aly Langdon hit Prime Minister Anthony Albanese with a devastating smackdown after he blamed Scott Morrison for axing Covid benefits on June 30
Federal Health Minister Mark Butler predicted millions of Australians will catch Covid within the new few weeks as the virulent new Omicron strains BA.4 and BA.5 sweep the country.
But the new Labor government has refused to revive or extend the schemes, which paid up to $750 a week to those forced to isolate for seven days or more.
Now Mr Albanese is coming under increasing pressure to reverse the decision, with even NSW state Labor leader Chris Minns demanding a rethink ‘for our health and economy.’
Today host Langdon tackled the PM while he was in Fiji for the Pacific Island Forum on Thursday and asked if the government had made a ‘huge mistake’ by implementing the decision.
Prime Minister Alnthony Albanese said he sympathised but said it was the previous government’s decision to end the financial lifeline for those isolating from Covid
‘We haven’t, we haven’t,’ the PM said. ‘What we inherited was a range of decisions from the former government on a timetable they worked out.
‘We inherited those decisions and we inherited those decisions and we inherited a trillion dollars of debt. We’ll continue to take advice and monitor what’s going on.’
Co-host Karl Stefanovic said the Australian Medical Association had branded the decision ‘catastrophic’ but the PM insisted he was not to blame.
Health experts are predicting millions of Australians will catch Covid within the new few weeks as the virulent new Omicron strains BA.4 and BA.5 sweep the country
‘It’s just a fact that we’ve made no decision to cut payments,’ he said.
‘There were measures that were in place that have been made by the former government with end dates to them.’
Langdon grilled Albanese: ‘Can I just go back to that? I’m a bit confused, sorry Prime Minister, I’m a bit confused about that. You’re saying no decision has been made?
‘Are you saying potentially these pandemic leave payments will continue?’
Anthony Albanese is coming under increasing pressure to reverse the decision, with even NSW state Labor leader Chris Minns (pictured) demanding a rethink
Albanese replied: ‘No. These decisions were made by the former government…’
But Langdon snapped: ‘You’re in power now, Prime Minister.’
The PM said the government would work with the states and territories and take health advice before reaching any future decisions.
But Langdon then played the PM a clip of Kiralee, a 21 year old casual worker, who has been forced into Covid isolation while looking after her sister.
The Woolworths worker told the PM: ‘I just think he should reconsider and see this is affecting so many people worse than me. I just think they need help.’
This video of Kiralee led Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to soften his tone
Anthony Albanese said the government would work with the states and territories and take health advice before reaching any future decisions
The PM said he sympathised but repeated that it was the previous government’s decision to end the financial lifeline.
‘Yes, people are going through a difficult period,’ he added. ‘This pandemic has thrown challenges at Australians.
‘Australians have responded magnificently to those challenges. And my government will continue to take the health advice and continue to take action based upon that advice.
‘I can’t do more than that. We’ll continue to monitor what’s necessary and we’ll take what action is necessary.’