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Monday, 15 June 2009
Page: 5905


Mr BRIGGS (3:49 PM) —My question is to the Treasurer. Can the Treasurer explain why a $900 cash-splash cheque from the Reserve Bank to Mrs Gloria Hartridge has bounced, resulting in a $9 dishonour fee to this hardworking mother? Treasurer, has the government run out of money?


Mr Albanese —Mr Speaker, I rise on a point of order under the standing orders. Have they run out of questions?


The SPEAKER —Order! There is no point of order. There have been a number of questions that, on literal interpretation of the standing orders, have been outside the standing orders.


Mr SWAN (Treasurer) —I am happy to look at the details, as usual. Whether what the member says is true or not, I do not know, but I am happy to—


Ms Julie Bishop interjecting


Mr SWAN —Well, that would be a change, wouldn’t it! That would be a dramatic change from what we have been seeing in the House over a long period of time. This crew opposite will go to enormous lengths to try and discredit the importance of economic stimulus and what it has done to support employment and business in the Australian economy. They will go to any lengths—they will say anything, they will do anything and they will distort anything—to try and cast some doubt on the effectiveness of economic stimulus, which has been of such benefit to so many people in this community who have been employed and so many businesses out there who really need customers coming through the door. But they simply do not get it. I am happy to follow up the details, but it does not in any way absolve any of those opposite from their irresponsibility in voting against what has been absolutely critical for the Australian economy in our time of need.