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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 08 Hansard (Wednesday, 18 August 2010) . . Page.. 3545 ..


Mr Hanson: Who would have thought?

MR SESELJA: Who would have thought? It is about integrity, Madam Assistant Speaker. We saw it and they were caught out, and Senator Brown has confirmed it. We have heard from both Mr Rattenbury and Ms Hunter today. They have not for one moment walked away. These policies are clear. They are on the table and on their website. They have not been refuted. Senator Brown had the opportunity to refute them today. They go to the real cost of living pressures for people in the ACT. They go to school fees. They go to the cost of childcare. They go to the cost of private health insurance—the 55 per cent of Canberrans who pay for private health insurance. As Mr Smyth pointed out, a large number of these people are on low incomes. A large number, again, are on middle incomes. Pensioners and ordinary workers right around the territory who pay for private health insurance will see it go up 30 per cent if the Greens get their way in the Senate. They will see their school fees go up. They will see their childcare costs go up. These are the facts.

I am pleased that, despite the attempts to distract, neither of the Greens speakers has pretended today that the policy is any different. There has been some pretence at other times, but we have had it absolutely confirmed—and we had it confirmed at the Press Club today—that these are the Greens’ policies. They will push up the cost of living. They will hurt Canberra families.

MR DOSZPOT (Brindabella) (4.31): The Greens’ assault on private institutions and the private school sector over the past few weeks, this ideology-driven posturing, is becoming increasingly concerning to our community, on a number of levels. The economic impact on the ACT and the cynical and dangerous attack on the freedom of personal choice, not taking for granted the liberties we enjoy, the freedom to choose, to live one’s life the way one sees fit, to be what you aspire to be and not just what you are born into, are all things worth fighting for. This motion broadly frames that the Greens’ policy will put considerable upwards financial pressures on Canberra families.

As shadow minister for education, I would like to comment on the Greens’ policy on non-government schools which, it needs to be said, smacks of bitter class envy. And if carried and supported by Labor, as seems fairly obvious by Mr Barr’s comments, it is vindictive enough that it will make parents and children in non-government schools suffer for it.

Take away choice in healthcare delivery, take away choice in insurance and now take away choice when it comes to our children’s education, the mantra of the Greens seems to be “the government can provide all”. And before long, if they have their way, parents can choose from a plethora of school options, that being public school or public school or public school. As Mr Barr so clearly illustrated just a few moments ago, these policies of the Greens are like watermelons: green on the outside and red on the inside. And I thank Mr Barr for that quote.

Ultimately, Canberrans will have to foot the bill for these unnecessary social engineering aspirations. As a Liberal and an elected member of this Assembly, I do


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