Now, this is rich. Politicians are always telling furphies, so I shouldn’t be surprised – but this one really got my goat.
“Labor always promises big to families, but doesn’t deliver,” ranted Treasurer Scott Morrison this week. “One of the key reasons for that is they promise spending with money that just isn’t there.”
He’s referring to Opposition Leader Bill Shorten’s announcement that he is pledging to increase the Child Care rebate cap from $7,500 per child to $10,000.
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But has he got amnesia? Does he need his head checked? Because it seems to me it was only one short election cycle ago that his very party did this exact same thing.
Last election, the ALP campaigned heavily on a promise to give working women a fully-funded Paid Paternity Leave (PPL) program. It was going to give new mums the same pay during six months of maternity leave that they would have received whilst working (up to $150k annual salary).
It was going to cost a whopping $5bn – money that the government didn’t have. At the time, Abbott said it would be funded by a new company tax, but that tax was going to be offset for companies as well, so the true source of funding was never clear.
Those of us who can see the forest for the trees knew that it was total BS from the outset.
So do I need to refresh your memory on how that one went?
The ALP won the election.
Next, they completely broke their promise to working families by unceremoniously dumping their proposed PPL scheme.
Then they did an even bigger backflip by announcing plans to put an end to “double dipping”: that is, when a woman has access to government PPL and an employer-funded PPL program.
Women who has maintained their jobs for years, carefully planning and budgeting when to have children based on their assumed leave entitlements, suddenly had their finances thrown into chaos.
Finally this year, the ALP confirmed that these plans would be shelved – for now.
But let’s keep things in perspective here, shall we, Mr Morrison? Throwing stones at glasshouses is a mighty unsafe past time when you’re this close to an election.
If Labor does get into leadership, the new childcare rebate limit will apply from January 1, 2017.
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