As political footballs go, workplace relations is one of the hottest.
A star recruit has joined Bill Shorten as he tries to convert jobs promises into election day points in the country's most marginal seat.
Mr Shorten started his campaign day pounding the pavement with rugby league legend Johnathan Thurston on an early morning run through Townsville.
He then traded bitumen for bagpipes, attending a military parade at the nearby Lavarack Barracks.
Visiting a Townsville construction site, Mr Shorten was desperate to hammer home his plans for higher wages and more secure work.
His latest promise is a legislated pathway for 2.6 million casuals to convert to permanent work.
But he was drilled over earlier comments to a worker earning $250,000 that he would look at tax relief for high income earners.
Mr Shorten denied misleading the Gladstone man, saying his party was on the record pledging to remove the deficit levy on high-income earners in 2022.
However, he said Labor would not "rob Peter to pay Paul" in pursuit of a better deal for people earning less.
Mr Shorten blasted Scott Morrison for "ducking and weaving" questions about the coalition's tax plans.
"I'm not goings to let him run around the country taking his happy pills and having his little photos and getting away without serious scrutiny," he told reporters on Wednesday.
"The prime minister's job isn't to be the court jester, it's to be the man with the plan and the answers. I've got the plan and I've got the answers."
Mr Shorten also hardened his stance on Adani after days of refusing to rule out reviewing the coal mine's environmental approvals.
"We are not going to review Adani, full stop. We have no plans."
In his rallying cry to the construction workers, Mr Shorten pleaded with them not to vote for Clive Palmer's political party.
The United Australia Party's local candidate is polling at about 14 per cent and could end up playing kingmaker in Herbert.
Mr Shorten blasted "Old Clive" because the government had been forced to bring forward payments to almost 800 workers sacked from his Queensland Nickel Refinery without receiving their entitlements.
"How is it this bloke can spend $30 million on advertising, telling you what a good bloke he is, but not find $74 million to pay 787 workers?"
"The next time you see someone with a big billboard saying he's going to help you, the first question you should ask is: 'Have you paid your workers?'"
"Every time he sends you a text message, you should send one back and say: 'Where's the money for the other people of Townsville?'"
Construction worker Luke Baker knew three of the people laid off.
"Where's all the money for workers?" he told reporters after speaking to Mr Shorten.
"You've got this $30 million to spend on advertising, but all these workers have got families, they've got to sell their houses or whatever, their cars.
"I'm surprised he (Clive Palmer) gets any votes mate, I think he's a grub."
Renderer Shane Milazzi shared a different view on Clive Palmer.
"You still need them smaller parties in there," Mr Milazzi told reporters.
"People may not like him, people like him. Same as Pauline, no one likes her, some people like her, you still need those parties in there."
Mr Shorten flew from Townsville to Darwin on Wednesday evening, attending a church service for victims of the Sri Lanka bombings ahead of an Anzac Day dawn service.
Australian Associated Press