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Time for Labor to come clean on tax changes.



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No.091

Thursday 27 October, 2005

TIME FOR LABOR TO COME CLEAN ON TAX CHANGES

It’s time Mr Beazley came clean on the changes the Labor Party has in mind for the taxation system.

Empty rhetoric is no substitute for genuine tax reform.

A commitment that: “We’re prepared to consider all levels” (Mr Beazley, AAP , 27 October 2005), is no tax policy at all. Rather than spending two days trying to convince business leaders that Labor is “business friendly” Mr Beazley should spell out exactly what Labor proposes to do.

It is ironic that while Shadow Revenue Minister, Joel Fitzgibbon, and disgruntled backbencher, Craig Emerson, are threatening Labor will rip work-related deductions from employees and the self-employed, Mr Beazley is floundering. His silence is ominous.

While Mr Beazley is in desperate search of a policy, it should not be forgotten that a few short months ago the ALP under his leadership voted against $22 billion worth of tax cuts in this year’s Budget.

This is the same Mr Beazley, who as Finance Minister in the last Labor Government, left a debt of $96 billion dollars to be paid for by all taxpayers. This is the same Mr Beazley who reneged on the infamous “L-A-W” tax cuts which the Keating Government promised and then so callously withdrew.

If Mr Beazley is serious about establishing Labor’s economic credentials he must spell out his tax plans so all Australians can see what he has in mind.

Without a clear commitment to good economic management, thinking about tax reform is about all we can expect from Mr Beazley and Labor.

Media contact: Alexander Drake (02) 6277 7360

© Commonwealth of Australia 2000