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Debate on the Omnicuts Bill

I think it is really important to understand what is going on here. What is going on here is that we have a piece of legislation that is going to result in a saving of $6 billion; it is an incredibly complex piece of legislation. For the benefit of the new senators, who have not even had the opportunity to look at this legislation in detail, the legislation involves the abolition of Medicare-funded dental care for young children—something that was negotiated as a result of the 2010 parliament.

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Opening of the 45th Parliament

I begin by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land that we are meeting on, the Ngunawal people, and I want to pay my respects to their elders past and present. I want to acknowledge that their land was stolen and never ceded, and I look forward to a respectful dialogue in the 45th Parliament to achieve a just settlement with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in this country.

Our Constitution says:

… the Senate shall have equal power with the House of Representatives in respect of all proposed laws.

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The Australian Greens Budget-in-Reply Speech

This budget, Malcolm Turnbull and Scott Morrison's first, is a massive let-down for the people of Australia. Just as they have been let down by Malcolm Turnbull as Prime Minister, the people of Australia have been let down by this budget. It is a budget that does not properly address the fact that we have a revenue problem.

It is a problem that was brought to us by John Howard and Peter Costello when they wasted the rivers of gold from the resources boom through round, after round, after round of tax cuts.

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Budget, like Turnbull, a massive let-down: Greens

Adam Bandt 3 May 2016

"This Budget is a massive let-down, just like Malcolm Turnbull has turned out to be," said Australian Greens Leader Richard Di Natale.

"The government is pretending it can afford unsustainable and unfair tax cuts for the big end of town by claiming fanciful levels of economic growth.

"While champagne will be flowing in board rooms across the country, these irresponsible cuts come at the expense of long-term funding for schools, hospitals and public services.

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Liberals set to deliver ‘Budget for the billionaires’

Adam Bandt 2 May 2016

The Australian Greens say the Liberals are set to deliver a Budget that will grow inequality by
including company tax cuts and income tax cuts for above average income earners.

"This Budget, like this Prime Minister, is shaping up to be a huge disappointment," said Greens Leader Richard Di Natale.

"Malcolm Turnbull came in and said everything was on the table, but now he and his Treasurer are serving up the same tired old dishes as Tony Abbott.

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Income tax proposal a cop out

The Liberals are proving they're not up to the task of tax reform, again dumping their budget problems on state and territory governments, the Australian Greens have said.

"The Turnbull Government doesn't have the ticker to take on any difficult areas of reform so it's looking for an easy way out," said Greens Leader Richard Di Natale.

"Instead of having the courage to take on unfair tax breaks like negative gearing, capital gains tax and fossil fuel subsidies, the PM is surrendering on real reform.

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Raise revenue from those who can most afford to pay

Analysis by the Parliamentary Budget Office shows the government could raise more than $4 billion over the forward estimates by making the temporary deficit levy permanent, and by introducing a new tax bracket for annual incomes of over $1 million.

“You know tax reform is right when it reduces inequality and raises enough revenue to pay for the services the community wants,” said Greens Leader Richard Di Natale.

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A better tax reform debate

I think the government's problems on this tax reform debate, indeed the government's problems under its former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, can be sheeted home to the simple proposition that really is its underlying philosophy. That proposition is this: this government, consistent with their philosophy, want to reduce taxes—income taxes, corporate taxes—and the cost of doing that is that we then do not have the revenue to fund essential services, things like health care, education, or to fund vital public infrastructure.

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