The fence-sitting move from Labor is already causing grumbling in Queensland, which recorded a huge swing against the party in this months’s federal election.
Outspoken former Queensland premier Campbell Newman also took issue with Mr Albanese’s stance.
Taking to Twitter yesterday, the former Liberal National Party leader lashed the new Labor leader for his indecision on Adani.
Mr Albanese quickly responded, thanking the former premier for his advice and referring to his history in government.
“Thanks for the advice mate but you went from 78 seats to 42 in one term including losing your own seat and @QLDLabor went from 7 into Govt #JustSaying,” he tweeted.
— Anthony Albanese (@AlboMP) May 28, 2019
Mr Albanese headed to Queensland earlier this week to begin repairing the damage done by the Labor Party and hopefully win back voters who abandoned them at the federal election.
The new Opposition Leader was in the former Labor seat of Longman north of Brisbane yesterday to start his listening tour of the Sunshine State.
“I’ve said very clearly that I think Labor got some of our positioning wrong. I’m not saying that after the event, by the way,” Mr Albanese told reporters.
In a John Button Lecture, he pushed Labor to speak to people who disagree with them — a contrast to Mr Shorten, who declined opportunities to speak to hostile media outlets.
Mr Albanese also spoke to conservative radio host Alan Jones yesterday morning, making another break from Mr Shorten’s tactics.
“We disagree on a number of issues, Alan, but I hope we can always have respectful discussions,” he told 2GB radio.
Despite this change of tack, Mr Albanese appears to be following Mr Shorten’s line in taking a neutral position on the Adani mine proposal, saying markets decide whether mines are built, not politicians.
“It’s not up to government to determine that; it’s up to markets themselves,” he told ABC radio.
“What it’s up to governments to do is to give environmental approvals. That’s happened of course at the federal level. At the state level, that’s being considered.”
He said the people of central Queensland wanted “certainty” on the mine.
“They want to know, ‘Is this project going ahead?’,” he said.
The Twitter battle comes the same week Mr Albanese questioned the “economics” of opening up the Galilee Basin to coalmining and declined to publicly endorse Adani’s $2 billion Carmichael mine.
Mining jobs are vital in parts of Queensland, where Mr Albanese is hoping to win over blue-collar workers.
Meanwhile, the Labor leader has made clear he has little love for anti-Adani activists who toured Australia, including towns in central Queensland, during the election campaign.
He also expressed that view before Australians went to the polls, he stressed.
“The truth is that that was incredibly provocative and did nothing to advance, in my view, a genuine debate about climate change,” he said.
“On climate change, the science is in. We need to act. But to reduce it to a debate about a single mine is in my view very unproductive, it does nothing to advance the debate.
“Good policy is about jobs, as well as about clean energy, as well as about making sure that we take the community with us.”
Mr Albanese headed to Caboolture in the seat of Longman — one of two Queensland electorates Labor lost at the federal election.
After hearing a “very loud message” from Australians on election day, he says he’ll be all ears while trying to better understand the issues that lost Labor votes.
Nominations for federal Labor parliamentary leader closed on Monday morning and, as expected, Mr Albanese was the only person to put his hand up.
Victorian MP Richard Marles will be his deputy as he was also the only person with his hat in the ring.