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Monday, 20 August 2018
Page: 7857


Mr DICK (Oxley) (12:44): The member for Fairfax, who has just finished speaking, spoke about leadership. Of all days for this parliament to get lectures from the LNP about leadership! The member for Fairfax and the member for Brisbane come from the division of the LNP in Queensland. A short moment ago, on leadership, Queensland LNP president Gary Spence urged MPs to topple Malcolm Turnbull for Peter Dutton. Of all the things, they talk about leadership! This is the most dysfunctional government that this dysfunctional government that this Commonwealth has ever had! The Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister and ministers are backgrounding people today.

Government members interjecting

Mr DICK: Those opposite are laughing. Turn on Sky News and you will see a cavalcade of desperate LNP MPs wanting to talk about everything other than the issue of the day.

So today we are hearing lectures from members opposite about leadership. Well, I can tell you what the people of Australia want. They want a government focused on them, not the LNP, who are focused on themselves.

Government members interjecting

Mr DICK: The member for Chisholm is having a lot to say. You're not going to be here after the election, so don't worry! If today's polls are any indication, 25 of you are going to lose your seats! What do two years of continually losing poll after poll say? It says the people of Australia are not interested in what you are selling! Take the hint. Talk to the community. They will tell you very clearly they are sick and tired of the government being focused on itself, worried about its own survival, not the economy of Australia. Time and time again, we are seeing a government hopelessly divided, completely at war with each other, unable to even sit around a cabinet table to make decisions.

Of course, we know, by listening to community and listening to our residents, the trickle-down rubbish that we are seeing time and time again. Today we are seeing the winding back of the progressive nature of Australia's world-leading tax system into a shambles where the rich get richer and the poor are left to pick up the scraps of those opposite, who just want trickle-down economics right across. Their one ideological hit is to make sure those at the bottom end of the scale pay more but those at the top get the benefits. That's what the government tax plan in the motion put forward by the member for Brisbane has left us already. I cannot believe the member for Brisbane and his colleagues come into this place wanting to be congratulated for making the residents that I represent pay more tax. You want people on lower incomes to pay more tax. It is that simple. You don't want people on low incomes to pay a smaller share; you want people at the top end to pay less.

They look puzzled when I talk about this. A resident in my electorate who is earning $40,000 a year will get a tax cut of $455, while someone on $200,000 a year get a tax cut of $7,255 per year. That is your definition of fairness. Someone on $40,000 gets $10 a week, but a surgeon on $200,000 a year gets a tax cut of over $7,255. If you think that's fair, if you think that's reasonable, good luck going out and selling that. You talk to working Australians, who are under record financial stress in their household budgets, and tell them: 'Guess what? I'm giving you $10 a week under this government, but the person across the river will get $7,000 worth of tax cuts.' That is just outrageous. If those opposite want to come to my electorate and argue that case, good luck; bring it in, any time, any place. Those opposite can come out and argue in the member for Batman's electorate and in the member for Morton's electorate. We will take a day and night. When it comes to fairness, it gets up my nose that time and time again we are seeing the members of this government wanting to be congratulated. I can understand that if you are an addict of trickle-down economics—sure. If that's what you think is fair—fine. But do not come into this parliament and expect to be congratulated for your policies. It will not happen, and we will make sure the people of Australia continue to know what you are up to.