Nationals Senator Barnaby Joyce has thrown his full support behind Queensland Premier Campbell Newman's tough program of job and spending cuts.
Senator Joyce today said Mr Newman's decision to shed 14,000 public service jobs in a effort to rein in the state's debt was a case of ''sanity prevailing''.
''I back Campbell up 100 per cent,'' Senator Joyce said.
''Look, people are always unhappy when someone is losing their job.
''But they realise why it's happening and it's happening not because of Newman - it's happening because of debt, and Labor brought about the debt, just like they're bringing about the debt federally.''
Federal Labor has made a concerted effort to paint the harsh cuts in the Queensland budget as a ''painful preview'' to what a federal conservative government might look like.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard told delegates at the Queensland ALP conference over the weekend they had a duty to inform constituents of what Australia would face under a federal Coalition government, saying ''[Mr] Newman's budget razor is Tony Abbott's curtain raiser''.
Asked if Mr Gillard was correct in her prediction the federal Coalition would implement a regime of spending and job cuts, Senator Joyce endorsed the notion that government debt would be reined in.
''Well, she's absolutely correct that the Labor Party which she is a part of has brought about the biggest deficits, our biggest debt, they've borrowed $10 billion in the last month, $2 billion in the last week,'' Senator Joyce said.
''The Labor Party complaining about Campbell Newman's cuts is like the people who left the house in a pigsty claiming, you know, complaining about the clean-up.''
Treasurer Wayne Swan seized on the comments, saying Senator Joyce had confirmed Labor's deepest suspicions that the federal Coalition supported, and aspired to replicate, Mr Newman's ''draconian actions''.
''Barnaby Joyce has today confirmed on radio what we all know – that Campbell Newman's slashing of jobs and services is the curtain-raiser for an Abbott government,'' Mr Swan said.
''What we're seeing in Queensland, NSW and Victoria is an awful, ugly preview of the wrecking ball that Tony Abbott would use to destroy the jobs and working conditions of people right throughout the country.
''Campbell Newman has said he's briefed Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey on his slash-and-burn approach to Queensland jobs and services – and they were fully supportive of his draconian actions.''
Mr Newman yesterday defended the decision to shed up to 14,000 public service jobs, saying they were necessary "to deal with Anna Bligh's mess".
"Reasonable people understand those tough decisions had to be made," he said, adding that the Prime Minister's comments were hypocritical.
"The federal Labor Government is sacking 12,000 people, they have a budget with a yawning deficit opening up. Isn't it time people looked at them?"