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Democrats will never back a rollback on food.

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Senator Natasha Stott Despoja Deputy Parliamentary Leader and Senator for South Australia

Press Release Dated: 12 Jul 2000

Press Release Number: 00/416

Portfolio: Treasury 

Democrats will never back a rollback on food The Australian Democrats will never back any future Labor Government attempt to roll back the GST exemption on food groceries as this would harm the most disadvantaged in the community.

Democrats’ Acting Leader, Senator Natasha Stott Despoja, said John Della Bosca's claim that taxing food would be the 'fairest thing' highlighted that Labor could not be trusted not to impose the GST on food.

"Last year, the Labor Party in the Senate twice voted against Democrat amendments to make food GST-free and now its most senior strategist has claimed that taxing food would be the 'fairest thing'.

"Even though Kim Beazley says Labor rejects the view that the GST should include food, the Labor Party's draft policy platform does not commit Labor to this. Labor's track record on keeping promises on sales taxes is poor.

"In 1993, the last Labor Government, having opposed the GST as unfair at the election, then broke its election promises by raising sales taxes by $ 3 billion a year.

"Only a few months ago, the new Labor Prime Minister of New Zealand, Helen Clark, was advising Kim Beazley that there was nothing wrong with a GST on food.

“John Della Bosca's comments should make it clear whether or not the GST on food is on Labor's secret post-election revenue strategy.

"Della Bosca, when he describes the GST on food as the 'fairest thing', is almost certainly talking as a senior Minister in the Carr Government which would like its hands on the $3.6 billion of revenue that a GST on food would raise.

"The Democrats will not have a bar of it. We call on ordinary ALP members to make sure that Kim Beazley, a former supporter of a broad based consumption tax, is locked into keeping food

GST-free," Senator Stott Despoja concluded.


Top | Email Authorised by: Jim Downey, 10 Brisbane Avenue, Barton ACT 2604. Copyright © 2000 Australian Democrats Last modified: Thu, 18 May 2000 13:51:26 Today: Wed, 12 Jul 2000 12:21:12