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Government expenditure: Labor fraud on inflation.

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The Hon Peter Dutton MP Shadow Minister for Finance, Competition Policy and Deregulation

Lindsay Tanner, the Minister for Finance and Deregulation, was today unable to confirm in question time in the House of Representatives that Government spending will grow in real terms by 5.5% from 2008-09 to 2009-10.

''It is evident from his response in question time today that Mr Tanner has not read the Budget Papers'' said the Hon Peter Dutton MP, Shadow Minister for Finance, Competition Policy and Deregulation.

''Table 1 of Statement 10 in the Budget Papers (see attached), indicates that cash payments by the Government will increase from $287.8 billion in 2008-09 to $307.3 billion in 2009-10. This is a net increase of $19.5 billion or 6.8%, and in real terms is an increase of 5.5%, using the non-farm GDP deflator.

''Mr Tanner also revealed yesterday that he supports the State Labor Governments trebling their debt to $112 billion over the next five years.

''Mr Tanner has again today criticised the Coalition for referring important pieces of legislation off to Senate Committees to undergo proper scrutiny. According to Mr Tanner, this will threaten the Government's anti-inflation policies.

''The reality is that the biggest threat to the Government's inflation policy is the Rudd Government. The 2007-08 Budget surplus would have been $2.8 billion higher if Labor hadn't gone on a post-election spending spree.

''Lindsay Tanner's economic credibility is under question when he claims higher spending by the Coalition was inflationary but the same level of spending under Labor is not inflationary.

''This is a traditional high taxing, high spending Labor Government. With an understanding of the Budget like this, no wonder consumers and business have both lost confidence in this Government.''