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Premier's popularity up

Gutwein Fabris

A senior Tasmanian Labor politician says the Premier's sky-high approval rating is hardly surprising, attributing it to the "wartime effect".

A Newspoll in the Australia has found Peter Gutwein's support from voters has risen to 90 per cent, while Victoria's Labor Premier Daniel Andrews, currently overseeing a fresh outbreak of coronavirus, has slipped 8 points to 67 per cent.

70 per cent of Tasmanians polled believe Mr Gutwein has handled the pandemic "very well", up from 58 per cent in late April. 

Shadow Treasurer David O'Byrne says the Opposition gave Mr Gutwein a clear run to make difficult choices.

"We made a very clear decision early on that we would support the government in making these tough decisions, and he did, which is good, so it's not surprising," he told Tasmania Talks. 

But he's also accusing the Premier of buckpassing and obfuscation during Monday's appearance before Parliament's Public Accounts Committee. 

"Peter Gutwein's response to any scrutiny of the government's response to COVID-19, in particular the North West outbreak, was to palm it off to Director of Public Health or the State Controller," said Mr O'Byrne.  

“We’re in the middle of a State of Emergency that has impacted every single person in Tasmania - there is absolutely no excuse for the Premier not to be prepared to answer basic questions relating to the government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic." 

Image: John Fabris