Skip navigation

How I'm Fighting Against Pork-Barrelling

There's new reports this week that the major parties' $20 billion medical research fund may have been pork-barrelled. In this newsletter, I share how I'm trying to stop that.

It’s the $20 billion fund you’ve probably never heard of.

The Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) was subject to some excellent reporting in The Age this week, where journalist Liam Mannix uncovered examples of what looks like pork-barrelling.

It is significant reporting: the MRFF is a $20 billion fund that the Health Minister can spend with almost no restraint. That has lead to some heinous examples in recent years of fantastic hospitals and research institutes missing out on key funding to groups that just happened to be in electorates the Liberal Party was trying to win.

When I was working as a paediatric neurologist, the fund was jokingly called the ‘Medical Research Fund For Friends’. It’s no joke. I’ve been in the media this week pushing the Federal Government to reform the fund. 

Keep an eye on The Age this week as I keep up the pressure on the Federal Government to spend our money in the national interest, not in the major parties’ self-interest.

In this newsletter, an update on our Voice campaign, why I think Dan Andrews was right to cancel the Commonwealth Games, and our upcoming events.

Our Nation-Leading Voice Campaign

It was exciting to read in papers this week that our Voice doorknockers are leading the country.

Esteemed columnist and former Liberal staffer Niki Savva wrote in The Age:

[Monique Ryan], with more than 200 volunteers — up from 12 six weeks ago — doorknocked more than 6,000 homes. She says they are on track to knock on every door in Kooyong well before the referendum…

Niki Savva in The Age on Thursday, 20 July

While Peter Dutton is spearheading the negative ‘No’ campaign and dragging his Liberal colleagues even further to the right, Kooyong is leading the country with its efforts to secure a ‘Yes’ vote in the Voice to Parliament referendum.

Thank you. It’s yet another reminder that Kooyong is the best community in the country.

Cost-Of-Living Not Fun And Games

Earlier in the week, I was on the Today Show making a point that might not be popular with everyone: I think Dan Andrews was right to cancel the Commonwealth games.

I feel really sorry for the athletes and everyone else involved in the Games.

Having said that, though, we are in the worst cost-of-living crisis in decades.

Victoria is in $135 billion of debt and you can’t pay for everything: when people are struggling to pay their mortgage and power bills are going up yet again, we have to make tough choices. I think cancelling the Games is one of those tough choices.

What’s On With Mon

Join NDIS Minister Bill Shorten and myself on Tuesday, 22 August, for a community discussion about all things NDIS. The session will be available in person and on livestream.

Note: the date has changed for this event to 22 August due to the NDIS Minister’s schedule.

For students and young people in Kooyong ready to campaign for the Voice to Parliament! Find out more about what the growing team is doing and hear how you can help out.

Stay warm through the cold weather, and as always, my team and I are always here to help where we can.

All the best,

Continue Reading

Read More