An under-pressure Prime Minister has ridiculed a question on the Voice as the opposition attempted to table the official history of the Uluru Statement from the Heart.
The Coalition renewed its pressure on the government for its commitment to the referendum during question time on Tuesday, despite flagging support in recent opinion polls.
Deputy Liberal leader Sussan Ley seized on claims the Uluru Statement from the Heart was actually 15 pages long.
“Does the Prime Minister still maintain the Uluru Statement is just one page and that any suggestions otherwise are conspiracy theory and nonsense?” she asked.
But Mr Albanese wasn’t up for the tit-for-tat.
“Wait until they reveal the secret verses of You’re the Voice by John Farnham,” Mr Albanese said, in reference to the hit song being used in the Yes camp’s latest ad campaign.
“Wait until they find that. Because they are out there somewhere. There is a 10-minute bagpipe solo in it that goes on and on and on,” he said to laughter in the chamber.
He said the 15 page document, which was published in News Corp papers on Tuesday, included the records of meetings across various locations.
The Uluru Statement, which Mr Albanese has committed to implementing “in full”, recommends an Indigenous Voice to Parliament, a treaty with First Nations people and truth-telling.
The government, and Uluru dialogue architects Professor Megan Davis and Patricia Anderson, have repeatedly stressed the statement agreed to in 2017 is just 440 words long.
Ms Ley attempted to table the 200 page book authored by Prof Davis and Ms Anderson but was knocked back.
Earlier, opposition leader Peter Dutton pressed the Prime Minister about the October 14 referendum.
“How can the Prime Minister in good conscience go into the referendum … knowing he will divide our country clean down the middle?” Mr Dutton asked.
Mr Albanese accused the Coalition of wanting the Voice to be defeated for political reasons.
“Then he says he will have another referendum … He wants to talk about this year after year after year after year. We want outcomes,” he said.
It comes after Mr Dutton unveiled his plan to take Australia to another referendum solely on Indigenous constitutional recognition should the Voice fail and if he is elected to power.
The Prime Minister stressed “no-one” was asking for a second referendum.
“He wants to see Indigenous people and just doesn't want them to be heard,” Mr Albanese said.
Later on in Question Time, Education Minister Jason Clare outlined the cost benefit the Voice could have on Australian taxpayers.
“It costs taxpayers an average of $11,000 a year to send an Australian to university. It costs around $148,000 a year to send them to prison. More than 13 times as much,” Mr Clare told the chamber.
“At the moment, about 45 per cent of young Australian adults have a university degree but only 7 per cent of young Indigenous adults have a university degree.
“If we want this gap to close we have to do more than just change laws like this. We have to change the way we do things.”
He was answering a question about the government’s Bill to boost the number of young Indigenous people that go to university when he made the remarks.