“I do not believe that the great bulk of members of Parliament in this place are overpaid … if we continue to take the populist route on this issue we will trash the gene pool of potential entrants to this Parliament.” – John Howard, 7 September.


“I do think there’s an obligation on all company boards … to justify these very large salaries. My experience talking to Australians is that they wear very big salaries where there is very big success. They believe that success should be rewarded, they accept that … although the average Australian does find it hard to comprehend the size of some salaries being paid.” John Howard, 27 September.


In the end, it seems the populist route is the only route most politicians are capable of taking.