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Why These Two Workers Blanked Bill For A Handshake

Bill Shorten went back to his union boss roots when he visited a warehouse to rally the troops, but not everyone was exactly excited to see him.

Shorten was in the electorate of Bonner on a whistle-stop trip to Brisbane on Thursday, and dropped by the ACFS Logistics facility at the city’s port area.

Rousing the mostly young workforce - a mix of men and women - with talk of the need to boost wages and strengthen protections around labour hire, the Labor leader looked at home and comfortable as he cracked jokes and bagged the Liberals.

Bill Shorten addresses workers during a visit to Australian Container Freight Services (ACFS) in Brisbane. Photo: AAP

Many of the young staff rushed up to take selfies with Shorten, with his Labor colleagues Penny Wong and Kristina Keneally even jumping in the back of one, yelling “photobomb!”

Shorten jumped in the driver’s seat of a forklift: "Which way are you driving?” a journalist asked, hoping in vain for a funny answer about left and right.

He also shook hands.

But a few employees weren’t in an obliging mood. As he left the warehouse for a walk through the office, he stuck out his palm for a handshake with two men standing in a doorway. They pointedly turned away, leaving the Labor leader totally hanging.

Bill Shorten goes in for a handshake. Photo: 10 News First

He widened his eyes and grimaced, then grinned, before moving on.

“I think he’s dangerous,” one of the men told 10 daily, regarding why he blanked the former AWU secretary.

“He’s got Grand Canyon-sized holes in his policies.”

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The other man said “they’re all dangerous”, saying he didn’t like any politicians.

When asked if they would have treated Scott Morrison the same way, the second man replied “shit yeah!”

“I wish he was coming. Where’s the eggs?”he joked, just days after the Prime Minister was allegedly targeted with an egg by a protester at a Country Women’s Association event in Albury.

The workers refuse to shake Bill Shorten's hand. Photo: 10 News First

Just minutes earlier, Shorten had given a heartfelt nod to his union past, acknowledging the anniversary of the rescue of Todd Russell and Brant Webb from Beaconsfield mine disaster, in which Shorten played a crucial role as union leader. He marked and mourned the death of Larry Knight, and sent wishes to the families of all men involved.

Earlier, inside the warehouse, in a crowd of people smiling and nodding along at Shorten’s speech, one young man was shaking his head.

“I don’t like his policies,” the man told 10 daily, while his colleagues snapped photos and smiled just metres away.

Bill Shorten left hanging. Photo: 10 News First

He felt Morrison was the better man in all three leaders' debates, praising his attention to detail and policy knowledge.

“People say the Liberals are for rich people and Labor is for workers. But Labor seems to be about hurting people when they get ahead,” he claimed.

Hopping out of the forklift, Shorten strolled over to four women standing together nearby. They spoke briefly about gender equality in the workplace, and Shorten pointed back to Wong and Keneally, saying he was proud to have strong women on his team.

“Yeah the girls!” one of the high-vis-clad women yelled.

“Show them how it’s done.”

Listen to Hugh Riminton and Peter Van Onselen in The Professor and The Hack discuss all things #Auspol. 

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