Agree with the opposition leader’s interview, and ABC presenter David Speers has asked Anthony Albanese if voters will see more government debt under a federal Labor government.
Here is the relevant exchange. It has been edited for length and clarity.
Speers: Will we see more debt under Labor?
Albanian: We have to be tax liable, which is why we have been very careful with our commitments. I will make two comments. One is that we prioritize investments in areas that increase productivity. So areas like cheaper child care, for example, for every dollar invested, produce [a] $ 2 returns to the economy. The Prime Minister says he’s a bulldozer … I’m a builder. I want to build infrastructure and make sure NBN works. I want to build the competence base …
Speers: More debt or not?
Albanian: The other thing we have also done is to do …
Speers: The question was guilt. Sorry, Mr Albanese. More debt?
Albanian: Yes. Debt is a product of input and output. What we are saying is that our investments are increasing our efforts, making sure that we are putting downward pressure on debt, making sure that we are responsible for taxation. The second thing we have done is to clearly indicate that the finance and finance departments will be commissioned this year to go through line by line and to get rid of the waste and waste that is permeated by this budget. We will have more to say about it this week.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Scott Morrison is holding the Liberal Party’s campaign launch this morning, where he will announce an extension of the incentives for older Australians to reduce their homes.
Albanese says Labor will match that promise, describing it as a “modest announcement”.
But he says Australia really needs more social and emergency housing for women and children fleeing violence – both of which happen to be Labor policies.