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Budget will be test of Government's credibility

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August 17, 1973

Next Tuesday’s Federal Budget will be a major

test of the Labor Government's credibility on the .

question of taxation, the Deputy Leader of the Opposition,

" Mr. Lynch, said today.

Speaking in Sydney, at the start of a day's

campaigning for the Liberal Party's Parramatta candidate,

Mr. Lynch said one of Mr. Whitlam's pre-election pledges

was that taxes would not rise at any level.

"This could only mean that a Labor Government would

not put up personal taxes or increase indirect taxes", he


"Equally, the removal of any of the existing tax

concessions, as foreshadowed in the 'leaked' report of the

Coombs task-force, will mean the dishonoring of Mr. Whitlam's


"No amount of persuasion would convince the

Australian people that the removal or reduction of tax

concessions does not amount to an increase in taxation.

They would certainly end up paying more.

"The situation would be even more serious if the

Government's interference with tax concessions increased

the already disproportionate burden borne by people in the

lower and middle-income brackets."

press release■ T H E H O N . P H IL L IP L Y N C H , M .P .Mr Lynch said it was vital that the Budget should take account of the damaging effects Labor's policies have had on economically disadvantaged groups in the community, including pensioners, superannuants and others on fixed incomes. ' ." They have been particularly hard hit by Labor's unrestrained spending spree and the inflationary pressures it has generated. The spending power of these groups has been dramatically eroded, despite increased social welfare payments."The appropriate strategy in Tuesday's Budget should be restraint on Government spending. The Government's own policies must give a lead in dampening the present inflationary psychology. . ·"Now is the time to cut the cloth of political ambition to the demands of economic reality."Mr. Lynch said he had great fears that in the Budget Labor would fail to meet its first major test of responsible and concerned Government.