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ABC News Breakfast -

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(generated from captions) The stop story - debate about

the carbon tax continued well

into the night in Canberra last

night as MPs put forward their final arguments on the

tax. It's expected the bill

will be passed through the

Lower House this morning. Greg

Hunt is the Opposition

spokesman for climate action,

environment and heritage and he

joins us now from Canberra.

Welcome to the program. Good morning. Firstly, how big an

error has Sophie Mirabella

made? Look, these things happen

every day in Parliament where

decisions are made. What was

happening yesterday is that the

Government denied the people a

say at the last election, they

refused yesterday to allow the

tabling of 4,500 submissions on

the carbon tax against the

carbon tax and petitions

against the carbon tax and today they're about to refuse

to give the Australian people a

say at the next election. This

was part of the process and

each and every day we see that

the Prime Minister is set to

breach her fundamental election

promise on the carbon tax. With

respect, this was a silly move

on Sophie Mirabella's part.

This is the Opposition's big

moment, ate been working

towards this vote since the

election. It was made very

clear to everyone in the party

that they were to be there for

this vote and it could have

been so easily avoided. I think

the real point here is the

Prime Minister and the

Government need to explain why they've broken their election

promise, they why they've

betrayed the Australian people.

Why they're imposing a tax and denying free speech. The point

is that Sophie Mirabella hatz

opportunity for the Government opened up a window of

to potentially rush through amendments to the Migration

Act? If they want to breach

their promise to deal with this legislation later in the week

they need to add that to the

explanations of why they

breached their election promise

that this would never ever

happen. So you're saying

there's no sense of frustration

or annoy ance at the actions of

Sophie Mirabella last night in

the chamber? Parliament's a

tough place and these things

happen every day in the

chamber. What really matters is

whether or not the Australian

people have a say over their

own destiny and right now in 25

minutes, the 72 ALP members

have a chance of giving the

Australian people a say at the

next election on whether or not

the Australian people have a

carbon tax and that is the real

issue that's in Canberra at

this moment. Do the Australian

people get a say, they were

denied it at the last election,

they were denied it through the

select committee process where

4,500 submix - submissions

were tossed in the bin by

Government members and in 25

Min - minutes the Government

of Australia has a chance to

give the Australian people a

say on the carbon tax and

whether you agree or disagree

with the tax you can support

democratic choice. Can you see

the Opposition being able to

appeal the carbon tax if it

wins Government at the next

election as Tony Abbott has

promised it would? Yes, this is

not difficult. The job of the

Parliament is to make or break

taxes. We expect that if the

ALP lose s the election they

will listen to the mandate of

the people and not stand in the

way of the tax being repealed.

If they do, we will go to a

double dissolution but we

expect that they will move out

of the way and allow this tax

to be repealed because that's

what the Australian people want

and we would have a mandate

which is clear, absolute and

ringing as a consequence of the

next election. But the Prime

Minister says that Tony Abbott

would have to break his promise

because he couldn't effectively

unscramble the egg and that he won't have the numbers to do it

and the idea of taking

compensation off families an

pensioners would be a silly

idea economically? Well she

would say that, wouldn't

she? How about Christine

Milne's criticism earlier this

morning , she described that

idea as being economically

illit - illiterate, any

response to that? It's clear

this tax will impose an

enormous cost of living hit on families. It will impose an

enormous cost to production hit

on Australian businesses and it

will send $3.5 billion offshore

each and every year to foreign

carbon traders. That is

economically irresponsible and

that is economically illiterate

when there's a much better way

of doing things in Australia

rather than simply sending jobs

and emissions and investment

offshore. That's what we stand

for. We want to clean up

Australia, they want to send

money offshore and drive up the

cost of living for Australians

everywhere and deny them the

choice as to whether or not

Australians face this tax. Greg

Hunt, the Opposition voted

against 18 clean energy bills

and the steel transformation

package. How can Mr Abbott urge

Labor MPs to stand up for their

electorates for coal miners, steel workers,

steel workers, manufacturing

workers yet be so staunchly

opposed to supporting a package

that will put money into the industry? That's completely

wrong with great respect. What

we're seeing now is a carbon

tax that will go up and up and

up each year every year. That's

what it's intended to do.

That's what it's designed to do

and that's what Treasury

modelling shows and that means

that the steel sector will have

a permanent increasing tax

which will make it less

competitive in a world where we

are already struggling, in a

world where there have already

been job losses, not because of

the carbon tax but because of

global pressures, the carbon

tax is the worst possible thing

to do to the steel sector at

the worst possible time and we

will absolutely reject the idea

that we would simply send jobs,

emissions and Australian steel production offshore to China,

India and Indonesia. It it

won't help Australia or the

planet and it will hurt steel

workers right across the

country. We've run out of time country. We've run out of

but I appreciate your time this

morning, thanks so much for

joining us. Thank you. And a

reminder we'll have live

coverage on ABC 1 and ABC News

24 of that carbon tax vote. It