Labor Dodges Scrutiny To Lift Debt To $250 Billion

12 Jun

We covered this topic a month ago ( “Swan Raises Govt Borrowing Limit By Another $50Bn – And Don’t Ask Questions” ) – immediately after the budget, in fact.  But still, it’s nice to see the Liberal Party formally commenting on it:

The Gillard Government is pressing ahead with its plan to ramp up the Commonwealth debt limit to $250 billion while avoiding proper parliamentary scrutiny.

“Today Labor arrogantly opposed an amendment I moved to give the parliament the opportunity to consider separately and vote on the proposed increase in the borrowing limit,” Shadow Minister for Finance Andrew Robb said.

“Just two years ago the government raised the debt limit from $75 billion to $200 billion citing ‘special circumstances’ post GFC. They did this through a standalone proposal which was rightly considered by the parliament.

“This time they want to lift the debt ceiling to $250 billion and have buried the proposal – which includes the repeal of the ‘special circumstances’ clause – under the primary budget bill in a secondary Appropriation Bill.

“This tricky move denies the parliament the opportunity to debate the proposal in detail, to amend it, support it or oppose it,” Mr Robb said.

“The Gillard government should be embarrassed, that despite all their talk about fiscal consolidation, they clearly have no control over the nation’s finances hence the need to borrow yet another $50 billion.

“They are trying to slip this through on the sly to fund their extraordinary $135 million-day-borrowing habit. The budget papers show that the face value of government debt is expected to be $192 billion at 30 June, so they are on the verge of running out of money under the current limit.

“When the Rudd-Gillard government came to office it inherited a budget which was not only debt free, but had $70 billion in reserves. To go from this situation to approaching $250 billion in debt in less than four years is simply extraordinary and highlights the true extent of Labor’s reckless and wasteful spending.

“Considering the vulnerability of the economy, to external shocks, as demonstrated by the first quarter of negative growth in more than two years, I would urge the government to split its budget bills before a final vote and allow proper scrutiny of its plan to saddle taxpayers with yet another $50 billion in debt,” Mr Robb said.

Barnaby was on to this – in a very public op-ed article – the day after the budget in which it was (quietly, sneakily) announced.

And that was also when he pointed out the emperor’s clothes once again.

To wit, the fact that Labor’s ever-rising debt means that our government will, like the rest of the West, in the end, steal our super to pay down debt.

He’s proven himself to be the only one who is truly on the ball.

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3 Responses to “Labor Dodges Scrutiny To Lift Debt To $250 Billion”

  1. Abe June 13, 2011 at 12:05 am #

    Burying it in a money bill was a cheap political act.

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