Monday, 2 May 2016
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Treasurer, representing the Special Minister of State. I refer to the case of Damien Mantach, the former director of the Victorian Liberal Party, who has pleaded guilty to stealing $1.5 million in party funds and is reportedly appearing in court this Friday. Can the Treasurer inform the House whether any public funds have been repaid in accordance with the commitment of the current president of the Victorian Liberal Party?
I thank the member for his question. These are matters, as he said, that are before the courts, and so I do not be making any comments on those matters. Any specific issues that he has raised I will raise with the Special Minister of State, and obviously he will get back in touch in accordance with the normal processes.
I do find it interesting, Mr Speaker, that we are two days from the budget. The budget is tomorrow—
Opposition members interjecting—
Tomorrow in the budget, what you will not get from this government is the sort of approach that those opposite are proposing. What we have had from the Leader of the Opposition is that he wants to run the country like a union. If those opposite, with their tax-and-spend approach, get to run the economy like a union, it will be deregistered under the sort of economic management that we will see from those opposite. We will not allow the economy to be run like a union, as the Leader of the Opposition wants to do. We will do it soberly; we will do it responsibly; we will not tax in order to spend like those opposite are proposing to do.
Tomorrow night what we will see is a budget that backs in Australians, who will ensure that we make the transition of the economy from the resources boom to a more diversified economy. We are going to do it—whether it is investing in our Defence industry to ensure the technology transfer and the jobs operating in that sector. And we are going to get there with the export trade agreements, which have been such a resounding success of this government. We are going to back in Australians who are making this transition a success.
What those opposite and the Leader of the Opposition want to do is to run the country like a union. We will not be using the bookkeeping skills of unions to run this country. What we will be doing is what coalition governments always do, and that is to ensure that governments live within their means and do not go on a tax-and-spend rampage that we know from those opposite.