“I had had a commitment for a $10 million allocation to the Wangaratta hospital that if elected, I was going to announce the week after the election, you know that. That is $10 million that Wangaratta hasn’t had because Cathy [McGowan] got elected. “

So said dumped Liberal MP Sophie Mirabella on Sky News last night. It’s a startling admission of what we all know to be true: the federal government is happy to offer pork for its favoured daughters and play politics with hospitals.

In Mirabella’s case it’s a scare tactic to pressure locals to toe the Liberal line and get back funding that was promised — and removed — by the Abbott government in a fit of pique.

But it’s also a rare thing in politics: the bald, ugly truth.

Peter Fray

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