PM forced into embarrassing apology
Scott Morrison has apologised to Kevin Rudd over claims he has repeatedly left and re-entered Australia throughout the pandemic.
Mr Rudd took issue with a comment Mr Morrison made on Monday afternoon when he was questioned over why Tony Abbott and Alexander Downer had been able to "leave and re-enter (Australia) multiple times this year".
In his response, Mr Morrison claimed Mr Rudd "has done the same thing".
Morrison claimed in the parliament today that I have obtained exemptions to travel in and out of Australia, taking quarantine places from other Australians. That is an utter falsehood. I haven't left Queensland since March. Morrison has misled the parliament & he should apologise pic.twitter.com/O7x6l3Q3qq— Kevin Rudd (@MrKRudd) December 7, 2020
The comment infuriated the former PM, who blasted it as an "utter falsehood".
"I have not left Australia since returning home from New York in March. I haven't even left Queensland. The Morrison Government's own records will prove this," Mr Rudd said in a statement.
"Mr Morrison's suggestion that I have claimed a rare quarantine place for myself, knowing that it would deprive a fellow Australian of the opportunity to be home for Christmas, is insulting."
The Prime Minister has written to the clerk of the House of Representatives to correct the record and to apologise to Mr Rudd, a spokesman for Mr Morrison told the Guardian.