Annastacia Palaszczuk Queensland COVID-19
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk (Image: AAP/Darren England)

Queensland is on a collision course with the rest of the nation over border openings in a high-stakes political move that risks flipping the popularity of Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.

The Queensland government is not confiding in voters, but the intemperate language adopted by Palaszczuk and senior ministers this week hints at Christmas being a closed shop north of the border. That means, ironically, that the state that has best managed to keep COVID-19 at bay may be the state offering its voters fewer freedoms, less travel and a more subdued Christmas than its interstate counterparts -- and that’s a difficult message to sell. 

“Where are you going to go?’’ Palaszczuk demanded when questioned last week by journalists about opening up. “Are you going to go to India?” Perhaps for the tens of thousands of Queenslanders born in India or the 100,000-plus Queenslanders who have an Indian-born parent, the answer might be yes.