POLITICS

Shorten Denies Involvement In 'Medicare' Text Message Drama

The Federal Opposition leader has denied any knowledge of the content of a message sent to voters on election day

04/07/2016 7:14 PM AEST | Updated July 15, 2016 12:56
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Federal Opposition leader Bill Shorten has denied knowing of the content of the 'Medicare' text message.

Federal Opposition leader Bill Shorten has denied any knowledge of the content of a 'Medicare' text message sent by the Queensland Labor Party in a last-ditch attempt to grab votes.

The text message, which was sent to voters across Queensland on the morning of election day, was titled 'Medicare', leading many to believe that it was sent directly by Medicare.

Appearing on The Project on Monday, Shorten refused to acknowledge that the potentially fraudulent message had any part in a national campaign led by the Australian Labor Party.

"In terms of the campaign, that wasn't part of any national campaign. I was not aware of that," he said.

"They [Queensland Labor] said they sent out a text. I don't know what they sent out."

The QLD branch of the ALP outed themselves on Sunday, with a spokesman saying the text message -- which called on voters to save the service from a Liberal/National Government, was consistent with Labor's message throughout the campaign.

"The message was not intended to indicate that it was a message from Medicare, rather to identify the subject of the text," a spokesman from Queensland Labor told Fairfax.

The text message is now the focus of an investigation by the Australian Federal Police after a referral was sent to them on Saturday in relation to the message.

"This matter is now being evaluated and whilst this occurs it would not be appropriate to provide further comment," the AFP confirmed.

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