Clive Palmer
Clive Palmer Brett Wortman

Clive Palmer's slur on PM's chief of staff condemned

CLIVE Palmer has refused to back down over an attack he made in Parliament on Tony Abbott's chief of staff.

The Sunshine Coast MP was condemned after he accused the government of designing its paid parental leave scheme ''just so that the Prime Minister's chief-of-staff can receive a massive benefit when she gets pregnant''.

Leader of the House Christopher Pyne immediately demanded an apology from Mr Palmer but the Palmer United Party leader was unrepentant.

Government MPs swooped on the comments given Ms Credlin's highly publicised struggle to have a child through IVF.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said on Tuesday the remarks were ''particularly hurtful'' and said Mr Palmer should think twice before making such personal attacks, Fairfax reported

Labor leader Bill Shorten described Mr Palmer's attack on Ms Credlin as ''unwarranted and wrong''.

''Our arguments should be about the issues,'' Mr Shorten said.

Mr Palmer said that he was not aware of Ms Credlin's personal struggles.

''I'm not going to apologise because that's my position,'' he said.

He later tweeted that he was concerned for women in rural areas not being able to get paid parental leave.