The one big problem with the Jacinta Price’s ‘dripping in Gucci’ sledge: As the VERY stylish Indigenous minister who is often seen in Prada, Louis Vuitton and Carla Zampatti responds in pointed fashion
Senator Jacinta Price’s jibe at Linda Burney’s private jet tour of outback communities while ‘dripping with Gucci’ has drawn a pointed response from the Indigenous Australians Minister: she doesn’t own anything made by the luxury brand.
While the minister may have a stylish wardrobe, her office said she ‘doesn’t own any Gucci products’.
Senator Price, who has been a strident critic of the Albanese government’s approach to indigenous issues, bluntly criticised Ms Burney private jet tour of remote communities to consult them on the upcoming referendum about creating an indigenous Voice to Parliament.
Sen. Price mocked Ms Burney for going into Aboriginal communities ‘dripping with Gucci’ to ‘tell people in the dirt what’s good for them’.
In a report by The Australian last weekend, it was revealed she had worn designer items including Prada sunglasses and Edward Meller shoes on her visit.
Senator Price made the ‘Gucci’ remark at a National Party press conference on Monday, and Ms Burney was asked on the ABC how the Voice debate had become so ‘personal’ and ‘so nasty’ between the two Aboriginal parliamentarians.
‘There’s going to be many nasty things said, and I don’t take things personally,’ Ms Burney said before relating details of her childhood in the Riverina town of Whitton, NSW, separated from her white mother and estranged from her Aboriginal father.
Linda Burney made what appeared to be a few sly digs on the ABC’s 7.30 program on Tuesday night (above) while refusing to directly comment about Jacinta Price’s ‘dripping with Gucci’ sledge
Senator Price made the comment about Linda Burney’s ‘ tour of outback communities to sell the Voice referendum, slamming the minister for ‘taking a private jet … dripping with Gucci to tell people in the dirt what’s good for them’
Linda Burney (above in the red Carla Zampatti ensemble she wore for her official parliamentary portrait in 2019) has always been stylish and wears fashionable brands, but ‘doesn’t own any Gucci products’
Linda Burney, 65, (above carrying a Louis Vuitton bag) did not directly respond on 7.30 about the sledge , but said she had been raised to understand that ‘kindness is free’
She told 7.30 host Sarah Ferguson that her white Scottish great aunt and uncle ‘raised me to be respectful, they raised me to listen to people’.
In what might have been a dig at Senator Price, Ms Burney said she also lived by the maxim they instilled in her that ‘kindness is free’.
‘Giving up is not in my blood and I know that this referendum and a Voice to the Parliament will improve life outcomes for First Nations People in this country,’ Ms Burney said.
But Ferguson further pressed the minister that ‘the thrust of Jacinta Price’s argument… is Aboriginal urban elites have no connection to nor understanding of remote communities. What do you say to that?’.
Ms Burney replied, ‘Look, I don’t want to respond directly,’ but went on to say, in what might have been another dig, ‘I am so proud of the fact we have a Prime Minister who believes in good manners’.
Linda Burney (centre) with Northern Territory senator Malarndirri MCarthy and Marion Scrymgour MP in central Australia on her recent tour of outback communities to explain the Voice referendum
Linda Burney (above in outback Australia on her recent tour) said ‘having a Voice of the Parliament is about better outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people when it comes to health, child removal, education, housing, incarceration’
‘If we ever think this about ourselves then we are not doing our job properly’.
The Labor minister said she ‘wasn’t surprised’ by Nationals leader David Littleproud’s ‘pre-emptive strike’ in declaring his party’s opposition to the Voice.
Ms Burney said it ‘was disappointing… but not the fatal blow people are talking about’.
‘The Nationals have made a decision, but I do note it’s not unanimous,’ she said.
‘This is a decision the Australian people will make, this referendum belongs to the Australian people, not to politicians.’
Linda Burney (above with former NBA star Shaquille O’Neal and Anthony Albanese) at a press conference for the Voice in August
Linda Burney said she she ‘wasn’t surprised’ by Nationals leader David Littleproud’s ‘pre-emptive strike’ by declaring his regional party’s position alongside Senator Price (above, to the right of Mr Littleproud, centre) and it ‘was disappointing … but not the fatal blow people are talking about’
In response to Sarah Ferguson’s question about Senator Price’s argument on Aboriginal urban elites and remote communities, Ms Burney said: ‘The other thing is if we ever think this about ourselves then we are not doing our job properly.’
Ms Burney, 65, is the first Aboriginal woman to serve in the House of Representatives and was previously the first Aboriginal person to be elected to the NSW Parliament.
She was sworn in as Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s Minister for Indigenous Australians in June, and is the Federal Government’s chief ministerial advocate of the Indigenous Voice to Parliament after the PM.
She has cited the Voice as Australia’s ‘best chance’ to improve lives of Indigenous Australians and for ‘better outcomes when it comes to health, child removal, education, housing, incarceration, all of those things’.
Senator Price slammed Indigenous Australians Minister Linda Burney (pictured) for visiting remote communities ‘dripping in Gucci’ and telling them ‘what they need’
Ms Burney and Labor senator Pat Dodson, both indigenous MPs and strong proponents of the Voice, during a Labor Party Caucus at Parliament House
Linda Burney (above as a child) moved people to tears on Tuesday with her own childhood story to the House of Representatives after her verbal battering by Senator Price
Ms Burney’s moving life story told to the House of Representatives, in which she explained her support for a constitutionally enshrined Voice, prompted applause and tears.
‘I was raised by Billy and Nina. We didn’t have much,’ she told the House.
‘Billy and Nina taught me the value of respect. And that you learn more from listening than by talking.
”I didn’t know my dad until I was 27. That someone with my history can stand in this place is the most unlikely thing.
‘But not everyone is so lucky. Not everyone can have their voice heard. ‘That is why we need a Voice.’
The Voice: What would be added to the constitution?
1. There shall be a body, to be called the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice.
2. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice may make representations to Parliament and the executive government on matters relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.
3. The Parliament shall, subject to this constitution, have power to make laws with respect to the composition, functions, powers and procedures of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice.
Of Wiradjuri descent, Linda Burney became the first Aboriginal graduate from the Mitchell College of Advanced Education, with a Diploma in Teaching and an Honorary PhD.
From teaching, she became deputy and then director general of the NSW Department of Aboriginal Affairs, entering NSW Parliament in 2003 and Federal Parliament in 2016, in the seat of Barton.
Since entering politics Ms Burney has been admired for her stylish attire and love of fashion, notably the red ensemble she wore for her parliamentary portrait unveiled in 2019.
‘There was never any question about what I was going to wear in my official parliamentary portrait – a striking design by the wonderful Carla Zampatti,’ she said at the time.
‘Red is one of the most powerful colours and the colour of my party.’
Following Senator Price’s ‘dripping with Gucci’ remark on Monday, the Prime Minister and several MPs spoke in solidarity with her at a party room meeting.
‘When people go that personal, it shows they do not have an argument of substance,’ Mr Albanese told the room.
One MP called Senator Price’s remarks a ‘repulsive and absurd attack’.