Queensland

Pyne happy to receive Palaszczuk response

Outspoken backbencher Rob Pyne has defended his decision to become a destabilising force in Queensland's minority Labor government by publicly airing grievances about the party.

The Cairns MP has often been unafraid to speak out against his party, but that attitude intensified over the past week when Mr Pyne quit the party's left faction and suggested he might even vote against Labor in parliament or quit the party.

Mr Pyne says he's since spoken with Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Treasurer Curtis Pitt, is happy with their responses to his concerns and will stay put.

But Mr Pyne insists he doesn't regret his mutinous behaviour, despite copping flak from colleagues for giving Opposition Leader Lawrence Springborg "a free kick".

"Sometimes you do wonder why you do it, but also I am conscious that I've got issues on the agenda that may otherwise not have been discussed at senior level, so that's a good outcome for Cairns," he said.

Mr Pyne said the premier even appeared to endorse his approach and promised to travel to Cairns for a roundtable discussion about his concerns, primarily over the effects proposed lock-out laws would have on his tourism-focused electorate and the region's high rate of youth unemployment.

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"I guess my concern was that the response might have been to crack the whip ... but I found the premier to actually be very empathetic," he said.

In a show of solidarity, Mr Pyne on Friday fronted a media conference in Cairns with Mr Pitt and Barron River MP Craig Crawford to spruik a $60 million accelerated works program in the state's far north to boost the region's economy.

He also indicated he didn't support a complaint his friend, Atherton resident Jason Ward, last month made on his behalf about Deputy Premier Jackie Trad and then-whip Mick de Brenni allegedly bullying and intimidating him.

"I wasn't involved in the lodgement of that complaint," Mr Pyne said.

Mr Pyne also said he wasn't concerned about a former staffer suing him, but wouldn't go into detail about what his grievances were.

"He's exercising his industrial rights and ... I wish him all the best," he said.

Meanwhile, Katter's Australian Party (KAP) MP Rob Katter applauded Mr Pyne's outspoken tactics.

"There's a deficit of it and it's very difficult for members of parliament to do that in the rigid party structure, so I think it's refreshing to see that," he said.

Mr Katter said the door was still open for Mr Pyne to defect to KAP, but he would have to adhere to the party's values because KAP wasn't "a harbour for dissidents".

Unsurprisingly, Opposition MP Tim Nicholls wasn't as supportive of Mr Pyne's actions, saying his "week of sulks and tantrums" was hurting his constituents.

AAP

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