Coalition acting like opposition in exile -Transcript, AM Agenda





SUBJECTS: Labor’s positive policies for the economy, Tony Abbott and Warringah, Labor’s plan to level the playing field for first home buyers, Coalition resignations, political parenting.

KIERAN GILBERT:  Joining us now is the Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh. Andrew Leigh, thanks so much for your time.


GILBERT: Well, no secrets as to what the government's main argument will be not just this week, but after the budget and right up until the election in May.

LEIGH: Well, their main argument will be that they're not Labor. That seems to be their entire focus these days.

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Another Day, Another Dollar

Cuts to penalty rates add up - it can cost someone who typically already earns less than the average worker up to $1,400 a year.

That’s why, in our first 100 days in government, a Shorten Labor Government would restore Sunday and public holiday penalty rates for 700,000 workers.

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How Tall is Your Money?

Inequality is at a 75-year high with wages growing three times as fast for the top 10th as for the bottom 10th.

Can we still call Australia a fair country when we have so much wealth moving from the battlers to the billionaires?

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Your Plane or Mine?

The private jet market has doubled over the past decade, while legroom on commercial flights has shrunk.

Less cash shouldn't mean poor treatment.

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Mind the Wealth Gap

Inequality, monopoly and beer - they have more in common than you think.

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Smile, You're Rich!

You might not have expected to find inequality in people’s smiles, but it’s there.

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Banks are overstepping - Transcript, 5AA Mornings





SUBJECTS: Banks, credit squeeze.

LEON BYNER: Let's talk to the Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh. Andrew, good morning. Do you agree that we might and should expect this?

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Good morning, Leon, and good morning your listeners. I certainly am concerned when you see this kind of behaviour going on by banks. I mean, it's one thing to make sure that you're doing your due diligence on a borrower, but it's another thing to be engaging in this sort of pretty intrusive involvement in people's lives. Just because you can see in your neighbour’s bathroom window, you shouldn’t start making comments on their body when you see them in the street. And the fact is we've got a bit of a credit squeeze on at the moment. The Council of Financial Regulators has warned of this last year. Philip Lowe the head of the Reserve Bank has warned about credit - having been quite loose for a number of years - now potentially becoming too tight. I think this is just the latest manifestation of it.

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Political parenting is a conversation we need to have - Transcript, ABC News 24





SUBJECTS: Politics and parenting, gender balance in political parties, Kelly O’Dwyer.

GEMMA VENESS: Returning to our earlier story, the resignation of Kelly O'Dwyer. For more on this, we're joined by the ABC’s chief political writer Annabel Crab and Labor MP Andrew Leigh also joins us from Canberra. Andrew Leigh, I will start with you. Kelly O'Dwyer's decision to quit politics and, as she has said, her desire for a third child - is this another point scored for the notion that work-life balance in federal politics could be a myth?

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: It’s a personal decision for Kelly and I wish her and her husband Jon all the best as they manage their lives from here on. The conversation has been partly around the challenge for the Liberal Party having now so few women, particularly in its senior ranks. They are closer to one in five, we're closer to one in two, and that means that they are more vulnerable to any particular resignation. But it’s opened up the conversation around juggling parenting and politics and that's something that I think is important for all political parents to talk about. Obviously women have it tougher, but making sure that that work-life balance is effective gives us a broader range of people who would be willing to put their hands up and go into politics if they think they don't have to choose between politics and a family.

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What's the Coalition's excuse for doubling net debt since 2013? - Transcript, ABC Melbourne Drive





SUBJECTS: The Coalition’s debt-doubling debacle, Labor’s plans to close multinational tax loopholes and make big business pay their fair share, Labor National Conference.

PRUE BENTLEY: Andrew Leigh is the Shadow Assistant Treasurer and is with us now. Andrew Leigh, good afternoon.

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Good afternoon, Prue. Great to be with you.

BENTLEY: First, before we get to the National Conference, the Government released their mid-year budget update this morning and they’re crowing about - particularly about a projected surplus for next year of $4.1 billion. This is what Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said to Ali Moore this morning.

JOSH FRYDENBERG, TREASURER: Well, the results today are the product of more than five years of hard work - disciplined design making, including more targeted and restrained spending, as well as putting in place tax cuts for small business people and for households and for families. So today’s, the first job we need to do is to deliver a surplus and the seance job we need to do is pay back Labor’s debt and we’ve still got that to do.

BENTLEY: That was Treasurer Josh Frydenberg this morning. Andrew Leigh, a return to surplus, that’s good news for the Government. That’s good news for the Australian public, isn’t it?

LEIGH: It's certainly good news, but I think what you heard there it wasn't merely crowing - it was what George Orwell called blackwhite. This is a government that came to office in 2013 promising a surplus in their first year and in every year after that. And they’re  on track, on their own numbers, to deliver six deficits and finally promising a surplus after having doubled net debt. As you know, Labor took on debt during the global financial crisis to save the economy in the teeth of the worst global recession that we'd seen since the greatest since the Great Depression. We managed to save 200,000 jobs. But what's the Coalition's excuse for having doubled net debt since 2013? They just don't have one. 

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The Coalition's war on charities - Speech, Adelaide



Over the last five years, the Liberals have been waging a war on charities. They have attempted to shut down the charities commission, the body supported by four out of five charities. When they couldn't get that legislation through parliament, they decided to appoint as its head Gary Johns. Now Gary Johns is somebody who's attacked the Indigenous charity Recognise, he’s criticised BeyondBlue, he’s described Indigenous women as “cash cows”. Putting Gary Johns in charge of the charities commission is like putting Ned Kelly in charge of bank security. It’s like putting Bronwyn Bishop in charge of transport for politicians.

Meanwhile, Labor’s been working with the charitable sector. We see a vibrant role for charities in supporting better public policy. We don’t just believe that environmental charities should be planting trees, we believe they should be talking about deforestation. We don’t just believe that social justice charities should be serving a soup kitchen, we believe they can play a role in talking about poverty. 

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Cnr Gungahlin Pl and Efkarpidis Street, Gungahlin ACT 2912 | 02 6247 4396 | Andrew.Leigh.MP@aph.gov.au | Authorised by A. Leigh MP, Australian Labor Party (ACT Branch), Canberra.