Page 2247 - Week 08 - Wednesday, 5 June 2013
Mr Hanson: You’re a grubby little man, Mr Barr.
MR BARR: Twelve years ago, Madam Speaker. And that is the same speech—
Mr Rattenbury: A point of order, Madam Speaker. Mr Hanson just interjected across the chamber, “You’re a grubby little man.” I believe Mr Hanson has actually taken a point of order on just such barbs thrown across the chamber, and I ask that you rule on that interjection from Mr Hanson.
MADAM SPEAKER: I ask Mr Hanson to withdraw the interjection.
Mr Hanson: Yes, I withdraw, Madam Speaker.
MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Barr.
MR BARR: Thank you, Madam Speaker. So that contribution from the shadow treasurer was the same as his 2002 contribution, his 2003 contribution, his 2004 contribution, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and I will boldly predict that he will say exactly the same tired old lines in 2014, 2015 and 2016 and, if he seeks to extend his career in opposition, in 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020. Nothing new to add to the debate; nothing but a series of talking points. He made the accusation that government members have some sort of talking points when he has just run exactly the same lines that Mr Hanson ran yesterday. He has three things to say, it seems, essentially parroting what is said nationally. So no points for originality; the same old contribution from the shadow treasurer.
I did not expect anything different from the shadow treasurer. The challenge for the Leader of the Opposition will be in his address in reply tomorrow to then outline some of the spending cuts he intends to make if he does not support the elements of investment across the directorates in this ACT budget. Let us be fair dinkum about it, Mr Hanson. If you believe we are spending too much, outline in your budget reply tomorrow where spending should be cut. If the Leader of the Opposition believes we should be putting stamp duty back up again, let him come forward with that view. Do you or do you not support the reduction of inefficient taxes in our economy? Do you or do you not support cuts to stamp duty and insurance taxes? You cannot have it both ways. You cannot support the tax cuts and then seek to argue that we should be running smaller deficits or no deficits and not seek to replace the revenue that is lost from cutting those inefficient taxes.
There is no magic pudding. If you are to reform taxation you need to make up that revenue that is lost from the abolition of inefficient taxes. We know we need a level of revenue to run services in this community. The fundamental questions this place has to address are: what is the most efficient way to raise that revenue? What sorts of taxation measures will have the least distortionary impact on our economy? What sorts of taxation measures will encourage investment in our economy?
If the opposition believes stamp duties and insurance taxes and further transaction taxes that are inefficient and unfair are the preferred way of raising revenue then let us