George Christensen at March for Life 2018

TRANSCRIPT:

Well, thank you very much, Julie. Thank you Cherish Life for all that you do on this most important of issues.

To recognise my colleagues soon-to-be, the Senator designate, Amanda Stoker. Congratulations to you and it's great to see a strong start from Amanda on this issue. So, good on you Amanda.

To my good friend, Mark Robinson, State MP, to Wendy, and Luke and many others from different organisations such as ACL and the NCC, thank you for being here today, as well.

And ladies and gentlemen, I'm here because of one thing that I fundamentally believe, and that is that life matters. And-- I've just seen this young girl down here with a fantastic T-shirt on, "unborn lives matter". That is great.

Now, I'm a, unashamedly, a conservative because I believe in conserving the good traditions which support community and support society. I have a little bit of libertarianism in me in that I support things that are good for the individual, protect the individual rights. And there is no greater tradition that serves community and serves society, and no greater right that protects the individual than the right, the God given right, the inalienable human right to life.

And-- I'm sort of repeating what I said in my maiden speech, actually, right here, now, eight years later. That we have foul compassion these days. You know, we've got ribbons that we wear on our chest for this cause or that cause, international days, and national days and weeks for this cause and that cause, but you know, the one thing that we know is inherently compassionate, is the relationship between and mother and a child, including a child in the womb, especially a child in the womb, or the relationship between a child and a parent, including a dying parent, probably especially, a dying parent.

These are relationships that actually by their nature, are compassionate.

And when we have laws, when have lobby groups and people that try to rend those relationships completely devoid of compassion, I got to tell you, our whole society, our whole nation, becomes a worse place. It is a place then, devoid in itself, of compassion, it is a place where we accept a culture of death and I do not want that for my country.

This is not, ladies and gentlemen, a partisan issue. There are good men and women in the ranks of the labour party who cherish life, just as there are good men and women in the ranks of the liberal national party who cherish life. Not going to say on all sides of the ledger. May their ranks swell with more people who cherish life.

But, there are also people in my side of politics, sadly, who don't value the worth of life as much as what we do here today. And to my shame, and as a member of the government, in the wake of president Donald Trump, terminating foreign aid funding that America was giving to Planned Parenthood International, we had, a bit over two weeks later, a Labour senator come out saying that Australia should make up for the shortfall that Trump was causing for Planned Parenthood, this great agency, this humanitarian agency that trades in foetal body parts post-abortion and profits off that.

And as I say, to my shame, sadly, my government, the government I'm a member of, gave nine and a half million dollars to Planned Parenthood. And I got to say, that was a disgraceful act, a very low point, I think, for our nation that we applaud that money into the procurement and promotion of abortion to people who are poor, vulnerable, in developing countries right around the world. But then again, it's estimated we pump in probably more than half a billion dollars to over 100 thousand abortion procedures. That's tax-payers' money going to abortion procedures in this country, via Medicare.

And I think what good, what good can actually be done with all of that money? What improved healthcomes could we be getting, for young mothers, for expectant mothers, for babies? What good could we be doing in promoting the value of life rather than ending it with that expenditure? Just that nine and a half million dollars that went overseas.

Imagine if we pumped that into pregnancy crisis and counselling services for young mothers. And I got to tell you ladies and gentlemen, I got to tell you, I'm going to be writing in this next week to Scott Morrison, our national Treasurer, to tell him that we should divert those funds, in future, to these procedures. And I'd encourage you to put pen paper or finger to keyboard and to do the same. Because we know that it's needed.

There was a government report on the maternity services commissioned by the formal Labour government back in 2009 that said this information, these counselling services for young expectant mothers is vitally needed.

So, you know, we've got to be vigilant about a lot of things. And I'll end by saying, we've got to be vigilant about what goes on in this building here and we've got to be vigilant for people like Mark because I think we're about to get a tsunami of bad laws here in this regard. We might even be seeing something that makes Victoria and the draconian regime they got there look like a walk in the park.

So be vigilant. Be vigilant in prayer. Whatever your faith background might be. Be vigilant by speaking up. Go and talk to your member of parliament and tell him what this issue means to you and what it'll mean for your vote.

And be vigilant by acting. By acting. You must act on this. You must do something. Talk to a neighbour, talk to a friend. Change people's minds and change the minds of the people that sit in that building.

God bless you. Thank you very much ladies and gentlemen.