After Tuesday’s Budget for the year was announced by Labor, Opposition leader Tony Abbott has spoken to Parliament in his official reply speech. He is promising electricity and gas prices will decrease under his government, tipped to win the next election.
Mr Abbott said that there would be no cuts to pensioners. And, although billions of dollars would be lost in revenue from the carbon tax, they would actually receive more from the government, providing that they Coalition would scrap it in it’s entirety.
Under his government, there will be a ‘no-body-worse-off’ policy, Mr Abbott said at the formal reply to the Government budget. “The Carbon Tax will go, but no-one’s fortnightly pension or benefit will go down” he said.
“So with a change of government, your weekly and fortnightly budgets will be under less pressure as electricity prices fall and gas prices fall and the carbon tax no longer cascades through our economy.”
But, money for all this has to come from somewhere, and there will be a five million dollar saving by the abolition of many of Labor’s programs that were funded by the mining tax. Under Labor’s government, this surprisingly only gets 200 million dollars in revenue.
Finance Minister Penny Wong said that superannuation changes proposed by the Opposition would ‘take an axe.’ She said at a press conference; ‘If anything, I think what it’s done has made very clear the values that drive Mr Abbott when he comes to his cuts.’
During Mr Abbott’s speech, he spoke of Labor’s scraps on the Baby Bonus, so-called ‘attacks’ on Medicare, and ‘robbing Peter to pay Paul.’
The Liberals plan to have a 0.5% increase in Medicare levy in order to fund the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
However, he didn’t go into any detail about following Labor’s Gonski Education reform plans, or about his ambitious paid parental leave scheme. The scheme which will see high-earning parents pocket an extra 3000 dollars a week when off work to care for a new-born.
Other parties have been quick to critique the Federal Government’s budget. Australian Greens Party leader Christine Milne said that although Labor’s budget was bad, the Coalition’s will be worse.
“Mr Abbott’s alternative is worse, full of rhetoric but devoid of detail, the very magic pudding against which Mr Hockey railed,” she said at a press conference.
The latest Nieslen poll reveals that if an election was held today, Liberals would win. Mr Abbott has an eight point lead over Ms Gillard as preferred Prime Minister. Ms Gillard is on 42% (down 1) and Mr Abbott is on 50% (up 1).