Determined Gillard to ‘keep fighting’

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In Perth at the end of week two of the election campaign, the prime minister showed renewed determination.

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“Let’s be very clear about this, we’re in a fight,” Ms Gillard told reporters at a major mining equipment mechanics workshop.

“I am going to keep fighting every day of this election campaign.”

While Ms Gillard offered no new promises on Saturday she did spend plenty of time with voters.

She dropped in for coffee in the Liberal held but notionally Labor electorate of Swan and then popped her head up at Sterling, held by coalition frontbencher Michael Keenan.

Despite the smiles from locals, Ms Gillard could not escape a new and dire AC Nielsen poll, which shows if an election was held now Opposition Leader Tony Abbott would become prime minister.

In response, Ms Gillard turned her focus to the economy.

“I’ll be fighting for jobs.

We made the right decisions when the global financial crisis threatened.

“We are standing here with the right policies to keep our economy strong,” Ms Gillard said.

While her focus was on the economy, the media drew her back to a report in The Australian that said Ms Gillard asked a police officer to deputise for her at National Security Committee meetings.

“Mr Andrew Stark was a member of the Australian Federal Police for 21 years and I think it is offensive to him, it’s offensive to me and I believe it would be offensive to hard working police right around this country to somehow conclude that a man who spent 21 years in the Australian Federal Police … doesn’t know anything about security,” Ms Gillard said.

The prime minister is now headed for Sydney where she will address a charity event for the Victor Chang Institute.

It is likely she will spend Sunday campaigning in more marginal electorates.