Australian PM Abbott under fire over knights and dames
Published on Mar 26, 2014 11:29 AM
SYDNEY (AFP) - Monarchist Prime Minister Tony Abbott was accused on Wednesday of sending Australia into a "time warp" by reintroducing knights and dames to the country's honours list.
The conservative leader announced the move on Tuesday with ministers revealing he went straight to Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, Australia's head of state, for approval without consulting his Liberal Party.
Opposition Labor lawmakers ridiculed the move, asking why he was not focusing on important issues such as health and unemployment instead.
"I'm concerned the Abbott government thinks this is a priority," Labor leader Bill Shorten said. He later told the National Press Club: "Are we in a time warp?" His colleague Ed Husic said it was proof Abbott was out of date.
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