DOES FATHER KNOW BEST?
Does he do it deliberately, doesn’t think, or just doesn’t care?
Opposition leader Tony Abbott again finds himself up to his neck in sexist soup after a comment which appears to refer to Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s childlessness.
The latest tit-for-tat goes like this:
Yesterday Treasurer Wayne Swan cut to the baby bonus for second and third children from $5,000 to $3,000.
Extra cash was not needed because a cot and pram bought for a first child did not have to be bought again for subsequent children, Mr. Swan said.
Tony Abbott disagreed on the Seven Network this morning.
“One child is still in the cot when the next one comes along. One child is still in the pram when the next one comes along,” he said.
“So you actually need to get an extra cot or a double-sized pram.”
“I think if the Government was a bit more experienced in this area, they wouldn’t come out with glib lines like that.”
The PM was quick to jump on the comment. She said on ABC radio: “Well I think Mr. Abbott can explain what he meant by that line.”
So what did he mean by it?
Nothing directly about the PM’s lack of experience as a mother, Abbott’s office said.
“He was criticising the Government for its out of touch statement that the more kids you have the less it costs families,” said the spokesman.
However, that explanation hasn’t stopped the Twitterati hopping in with comments like:
“Tony Abbott has another crack at Julia Gillard for being childless. And he wonders why women have a problem with him?”
Other reactions can be summed up as “meh”.
It’s probably rather pointless to tally up how many offspring the respective cabinet and shadow cabinets have between them.
And the size of your brood doesn’t exactly make you an expert on cots, strollers or prams.
So what does Mr. Abbott mean by saying that his side of the chamber has “more experience in in this area”?
What’s he getting at… and does it matter?