Federal

Jun 6, 2018

Could Turnbull deliver a sensible Coalition drought policy?

Is the government finally embracing the fact that drought assistance merely punishes farmers who do the right thing?

Bernard Keane — Politics editor

Bernard Keane

Politics editor

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull poses for a photograph with Paul Donoley (left) and Bruce Alexander during a visit to the township of Blackall, Queensland, Tuesday, June 5, 2018. Malcolm Turnbull and his senior National Party colleagues are touring regional NSW and Queensland towns this week to visit communities struggling with drought. (AAP Image/Lisa Alexander) NO ARCHIVING

Malcolm Turnbull with Paul Donoley (left) and Bruce Alexander during a visit to the township of Blackall, Queensland.

Perhaps it's due to the fact that the pernicious influence of Barnaby Joyce on policy has been removed, but when Malcolm Turnbull spoke ahead of his tour of drought-affected regions in Queensland on Monday, he made sense. Farmers, he said, were going to have to adapt to a changing climate that was making rainfall more variable. "You've got to ensure we can do everything we can to ensure that farmers are resilient," the Prime Minister said.

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