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ABC News Breakfast -

View in ParlView

(generated from captions) injured and we will have more

later in the program. Our top

story apart from the breaking

news is the Rudd Government's

$42 billion stimulus plan. It

is heading back the Senate

passed for this morning after being

passed for a second time in

the House of Representatives

late last night. After three

hours of debate the

Government used its majority

to get the bill through the

lower house and that took

place just after midnight.

The bill was voted down in the Senate yesterday after the independent Nick Xenophon

side would the Coalition. Now

the deputy Opposition Leader

Julie Bishop joins us from Canberra. Good morning. The

putting responsibility Government is squarely

putting responsibility for

the failure of this stimulus

package on your shoulders, on

the shoulders of Malcolm

Turnbull and you and the

remainder Opposition. What

responsibility do you accept

for that and are you troubled? The position the

Government finds itself in

having its legislation

rejected by the Senate is

entirely of its own making. This Government is yet to

learn the art of

learn the art of compromise.

We propose an alternative

package, some ideas we wanted

the Government to take into

account that would be supporting small business and

making it easier for small

business to employ people

because we believe the focus

should be on job creation.

Yet the Government refused to

even talk to us. The way it

treated the independent

Senators shows the Government

is just not prepared to

listen to anyone's ideas

listen to anyone's ideas

other than its own. The work

force figures that came out

yesterday reinforced the fact

we should be focussing on job

creation and we do not

believe the Government's

package does this. We do not

believe it provides the

business needs at this time incentives that small

to ensure we can create more jobs for the Australian

people. Let's move to the

issue of job creation which

is exactly how the Government describes its

describes its package and

believes lit do just that but

I accept there are differing

views on that. From what you

say and the way you describe

the lack of consultation and

the lack of taking your ideas

on board it almost sound fast

the Opposition is acting out

of peke out of not being

included? Not at all. We put

forward ideas supported by

but the eminent economists and others

but the Government's attitude

is "You take our package or

no package at all". We find

that very disturbing because

the Senate inquiry found, we

had to force it, the

Government wanted the ram

this legislation through in

48 hours, but the Senate

inquiry showed the Treasury

had not even been asked to

cost an alternative package

or proposal such as tax cuts or greater incentives

or greater incentives for

small business or a package

that was comprised in another

way so from the outset it has

been the Prime Minister's

package or nothing at all. So

listened the the views of the Government should have

others, should have taken

others ideas on board. The

Government is not the font of

all wisdom on this issue. We

know we are in difficult economic times. The Prime Minister says these

Minister says these are

unchartered waters,

unprecedented times but he

says he alone has the answer

to the stimulus our economy need. There are alternative

views and we would expect the

Government would want the

listen the other ideas and

come to a proposal that would

satisfy everyone. After all

we want to see our economy

grow, we want the so a

stimulus. Everyone believes

there should be a stimulus

yet the Government will not discuss

discuss with anyone aniality

ideas. Do you not accept

given this is the Government,

they are the mob in charge,

at least for now, they have

mandate to do this, that

there is always going to be

no matter who or what the

Opposition is alternative

views but when you are

dealing with such a massive

international problem and the

Monetary Fund and everyone advice from the International

else is to act and quickly

you simply move ahead with

the package as quickly as you

can and perhaps try to work

on the larger picture as you

go? As an Opposition do you

not see the urgency for

that? Compare the example of President Obama who went down

to Congress, sat down with

congressmen and whip and

discussed a package that

would come pies ideas from

other people yet this

Government has he fused to

countenance someone else may

have an idea. We have

suggested the focus should be

on small business and tax

cuts. That is an interesting analogy and we should spend a

moment on that because even

that bipartisanship did not

work, you still had opposing

positions which seemed to be

taken just for the sake of

being opposing It did work,

it worked for President

Obama. Initially after the

consultation it did not work

President Obama now has a

Australian Government has stimulus package. The

none. It is because of its attitude to the members of

the House of Representatives

and the electorates that they

represent and the Senators

that the Government has no

stimulus package today. We

have suggested a package that

be smaller, more targeted,

less debt. The Government is

plunging the country into an

extraordinary level of debt

with no plan to exit this

high level of debt. We are

suggesting that a more

prudent way of approaching

this would be to target it in

areas where it would

stimulate growth, stimulate

small business to keep employing people. The work

force figures that came out

yesterday showed the

Government's last attempt at

a stimulus package, that spending spree last December,

did not create the 75,000

jobs that the Government said

it would create. It failed.

Yet it want the proceed with

another cash hand out knowing

its last effort did not

work. Finally, the focus of negotiation today from the Government's point of view

seems to be pretty much solely with Nick Xenophon.

Are you suggesting there is a

chance for negotiation, that

the Opposition is still open the talk and it could pass

through the Upper House if

the government came and spoke

to you today? We have always

been open to negotiation. We

have put forward ideas.

Malcolm Turnbull and I and others have offered time and

time again to talk to the

Treasurer, to talk to the Prime Minister, to ask them

to listen to our ideas of how

we believe we could stimulate

this economy, grow small

business, ensure that jobs

are created. The government's

plan has failed. The

Government's $10 billion cash

splash last December did not

create one of the 75,000 jobs

they promised it would create

so we are saying there are

alternatives. Let's put in

plays a small business

package that would protect