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Thursday, 13 February 2014
Thursday, 13 February 2014 HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 411
Date Thursday, 13 February 2014 Source House
Page 411 Proof No
Questioner Shorten, Bill, MP Responder Abbott, Tony, MP
Speaker Question No.
Mr SHORTEN (MaribyrnongLeader of the
Opposition) (15:05): My question is to the Prime
Minister. I refer to the Prime Minister's statement:
No cuts to education, no cuts to health, no change to
pensions, no change to the GST and no cuts to the ABC
or SBS.
Does the Prime Minister stand by this statement?
Mr ABBOTT (WarringahPrime Minister) (15:05):
Of course I stand by all the commitments that this
government made prior to the election. If there is one
lesson that members opposite should have learnt from
the experience of the previous term of parliament it is
that you cannot say one thing before an election and do
the opposite afterwards.
Let us never, ever forget the former Prime Minister's
statement prior to the 2010 election: 'There will be
no carbon tax under the government I lead.' What did
we get? After the election, in order to save her job,
she broke her commitment to the Australian people.
In order to win the support of the Greens member of
this parliament, in order to stay in government, she
broke a solemn pledge. Unlike members opposite, if
this government says something, it means it. We will
keep our commitments.
It is interesting, is it not, that members opposite are
trying to stop us from keeping our commitments, but
we will, one way or another, keep our commitments.
It is interesting that the Leader of the Opposition has
talked about cuts to health and cuts to education. The
only government that, in recent times, has cut health
and cut education is the government in which he was
a senior minister.
The former minister for health is saying it is not
true. The former minister for health cut $1.6 billion
out of public hospitals. The Mid-Year Economic and
Fiscal Outlook 2012-13 cut $1.6 billion out of public
hospitals. What kind of parallel universe are members
opposite living in? Conrovia comes to health policy;
Conrovia comes to education policy. The former
minister, now Leader of the Opposition, cut $3.9 billion
out of education. He is shaking his head. He has a
terrible case of amnesia. Dr Gillespie, please attend to
this man!
The Australian people want a government that is
competent and trustworthy. The test of a trustworthy
government is: does it keep its commitments? And we