Deputy PM defends Albanese’s overseas trip during NSW floods crisis

The Deputy Prime Minister has come to the defence of his colleague, who has been the subject of criticism over the past few days for being overseas in the midst of the NSW flooding disaster.

Anthony Albanese is expected to head back home to Australia today following his whirlwind overseas trip.

During the venture, Mr Albanese visited Madrid for the NATO summit, Paris where he met with French President Emmanuel Macron, and Ukraine where he toured bomb-ravaged towns alongisde President Volodymyr Zelensky.


The PM is now in Poland as he begins his journey back down under.

The Federal Opposition has since taken aim at the Prime Minister, slamming him for not focusing on issues at home.

It comes as NSW is battered by its fourth flooding crisis in 18 months, with close to 100 evacuation orders still in place across the state, affecting around 30,000 residents.

Shadow Immigration Minister Dan Tehan told Sky News it is “concerning”.

“What he seems to be doing is focusing completely on the international front and good prime ministers can do both,” Mr Tehan said.

“They understand that ultimately the domestic front is the most important place and that is where you have to have the majority of your focus, and then you’ve got to be able to deal with international events.

“What we’re seeing from Mr Albanese is very much a focus on everything international and we’re starting to see serious drift when it comes to incredibly important domestic issues, like energy, like skills shortages, like these floods we’re now confronting on the eastern seaboard.”

But both Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles and Treasurer Jim Chalmers leapt to the defence of Mr Albanese on breakfast TV on Tuesday.

“As soon as Anthony was in a position to make contact he did,” Mr Marles said.

“He has spoken with NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet, he has spoken with Emergency Management Minister Murray Watt and he will be on the ground here later this week”.

Treasurer Jim Chalmers also echoed the same sentiments.

“The Prime Minister will be back tonight. He has already been working with the NSW Government and he has been briefed on the circumstances in the flood-affected areas,” Mr Chalmers said.

“He has been working around the clock to make sure that we are providing the Federal Government assistance that is necessary.”

It comes after the Prime Minister took to social media yesterday, urging residents in NSW to follow the directions of authorities and stay safe.

“Have crossed into Poland from Ukraine and left radio silence,” Mr Albanese tweeted.

“My first actions were briefings by @murraywatt and @DomPerrottet on NSW flooding and ensuring Federal Government assistance is being provided.

It’s a constantly changing situation. Check @NSWSES and @BOM_NSW for the latest advice and please stay safe.”