WEDNESDAY, 10 APRIL 2019
SUBJECTS: Labor’s plan to restore and boost emergency relief funding in Canberra.
DAVID SMITH: Look, it's great to be here in the Electorate of Bean. My name is David Smith, Labor Senator for the ACT and we're here at one of the great social enterprises of the ACT, Communities at Work at their headquarters and alongside me is our Shadow Assistant Minister for Communities and Families, Jenny McAllister and I'm also with Andrew Leigh, Member for Fenner and Alicia Payne, our candidate for Canberra.
One of the things that Labor is well aware of is that the fight against inequality is real. It's real here in Canberra. Here in Canberra at any time up to 35,000 Canberrans are living in poverty and that includes people who are working one or two jobs. That includes 9,000 children across the Territory.
Communities@Work does amazing work right across children’s services and senior services but there's particular work that they do in emergency relief work and that's why we're here today to talk about Labor's commitments both locally and nationally to restoring funding to this critical work here and across the country.Read more
ABC TASMANIA MORNINGS
MONDAY, 8 APRIL 2019
SUBJECTS: Labor’s plans to give Aussie hotels owners greater control of their business, Budget 2019.
CATHERINE ZENGERER: Tourism might be booming right across Tasmania, but if you are an accommodation provider and you are listed with one of the major online booking companies such as Expedia and Booking.com, then you may have had to sign a contract to say that you can't actually offer a discount for your own accommodation that undercuts what by the listing is on their pages. It's a contract known as a price parity clause and it's something that Labor is saying that they will get rid of if they're elected. We're certainly seeing a lot of politicians coming to Tasmania as we head towards a possible election. Andrew Leigh is one of them. He is the Shadow Assistant Treasurer for Labor and he's in our Launceston studio. Good morning.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER:Good morning Catherine. Great to be with you.
ZENGERER: So what's prompted this policy review by Labor?
LEIGH: It's the situation you described in which many Australians are now booking through one of these multinational online platforms, such as Kayak or Priceline,Booking.com or Expedia. They go by a host of names, but there's two of them that control 85 per cent of the market and they're taking a whopping share of the accommodation bill. So if you use one of these platforms, then when you stay at a hotel, up to a third of the total bill can go to amultinational. One of the ways in which they managed to get such a large share of revenues is by telling hotels that they can't offer a better deal on their own websites. These so-called price parity clauses are banned in a host of European countries and we think that it's appropriate to ban them in Australia. It tilts the playing field too far away from our local tourism providers and too much in favour of the big multinational duopoly. It's fine to charge something for putting a booking in place, but 30 per cent - really? That's just over the top.Read more
FRIDAY, 5 APRIL 2019
SUBJECT: The Budget.
LEON BYNER: The Shadow Assistant Treasurer, Dr Andrew Leigh. Andrew, thanks for coming on today.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Pleasure, Leon.
BYNER: I want to, I want to start with a pretty obvious question and that is that you guys, if you get elected, are going to continue with the budget repair levy. Correct?
LEIGH: Indeed. We think certainly at a time when the Liberals have doubled the debt it’s important for us to have the same top tax rate that Tony Abbott had back in 2014 – when debt was half of what it is now.Read more
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 4 APRIL 2019
I rise to speak on the Treasury Laws Amendment (Mutual Reforms) Bill 2019. The idea of mutualism is vital to communities. Mutuals build trust and reciprocity. They are an essential part of an inclusive society helping to foster empathy for our fellow human beings. Cooperatives and mutuals, as member-owned enterprises, exist and operate in the same market as investor owned enterprises. They are voluntary associations of people, democratically run for their members, for the pursuit of a common social, cultural or economic goal. Eight out of 10 Australian adults are members of at least one cooperative or mutual. They account for some seven or eight per cent of GDP and 54,000 direct jobs. Mutuals such as HCF, Capricorn Society, ME Bank, Australian Unity, Sun Super and roadside organisations including the NRMA, the RACQ and the RACV are cooperatives and mutuals that are essential to Australian society.
Mutualism is also well placed to play a role in the digital economy. Internationally we have driver owned apps competing with Uber and Lyft. Coopify is an app connecting a childcare cooperative with clients in New York. Stocksy sells stock photographs supplied by its members online. In my own electorate of Fenner I have seen firsthand the benefits of the cooperative sector, with the National Health Co-op now expanding from its original location in Charnwood to set up more than half a dozen locations across Canberra and rural New South Wales.
Labor supports this bill. And why wouldn't we? This is a Labor idea. This is a bill enacting Labor policy and we are delighted to see it finally coming to the House.Read more
ABC RADIO CANBERRA
WEDNESDAY, 3 APRIL 2019
SUBJECTS: The Budget.
ANNA VIDOT: With me now from Parliament House is Andrew Leigh, Labor's Shadow Assistant Treasurer and of course Member for Fenner. Andrew Leigh, welcome.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: G’day, Anna. Great to be with you.
VIDOT: The Coalition has now matched and it says slightly bettered Labor's low and middle income tax offsets and it says it will deliver a $7 billion surplus next year while also phasing in tax cuts over a decade. That's a pretty attractive proposition for the electorate, isn't it?
LEIGH: Let's go first to the surplus. This is a projected surplus, not a delivered surplus, from a government which promised that the budget would be in surplus in their first year and every year after that. They promised never to use the national credit card and then after six years of doubling net debt, they want a pat on the back for having put the national credit card back in the wallet. The fact is that net debt per person in Australia is now almost $15,000. That is twice as much as when the Coalition came to office. On income tax cuts, we welcome the fact that they backflipped. Last year they voted against similar tax cuts to the ones they are now apparently supporting. These tax cuts don't extend to people earning below $40,000. If we are elected in May, we will have to fix that up. We will certainly always support income tax relief for low and middle income earners. What we won't do is to back the Coalition's strategy of expanding tax loopholes for the top end of town. They’ve never seen a tax loophole for the rich that they won’t defend.Read more
ABC NEWS RADIO
WEDNESDAY, 3 APRIL 2019
SUBJECTS: The Budget.
SANDY ALOISI: To get an Opposition reaction, I'm joined now by the Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh. Andrew Leigh, good morning. Welcome to the program.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: G’day, Sandy. Great to be with you.
ALOISI: Well, the Coalition has forecast a surplus for next year. It's taken the Coalition some time to get here. But you've got to acknowledge this is good news for Australia.
LEIGH: This is a Coalition that promised in 2013 that they would never use the national credit card. Then after six years of using it, of doubling the total debt, they're now promising that if you vote for them again they'll finally put the national credit card back in the wallet. During that period, debt has risen so it's now nearly $15,000 for every Australian. That's the Coalition's record on debt.
ALOISI: If you think back though to Wayne Swan, a previous federal treasurer, you'll remember that he announced a series of surpluses that never eventuated.
LEIGH: Which is what's happening tonight. This is a projected surplus. The difference between Wayne Swan and Josh Frydenberg was Wayne Swan was staring down the biggest global crisis since the Great Depression. Josh Frydenberg has simply no excuse for the appalling way in which the Liberals have managed the nation's finances. I mean, they've got this surplus - a quarter of it is based on underspending on people with disabilities. You've seen a massive increase in corporate tax take, due in part to unexpected events such as the mine disaster in Brazil which drove demand for our iron ore exports.Read more
ABC RN DRIVE
MONDAY, 1 APRIL 2019
SUBJECTS: Labor’s Climate Change Action Plan, the Budget.
PATRICIA KARVELAS: Andrew Leigh is the Shadow Assistant Treasurer and he joins us on Drive. Andrew Leigh, welcome.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Thanks, Patricia. Glad to be with you.
KARVELAS: So the Coalition are already pitching this as a carbon tax. Do you accept that it is a price on carbon?
LEIGH: No, Patricia. I don't. This is extending Malcolm Turnbull's safeguards mechanism, which is a system that sets limits on a range of big industrial polluters. If they satisfy those limits, then that's well and good. They won't hear from the government again. What we're doing though is listening to business and improving that system by allowing firms to meet their targets by buying international permits.Read more
MONDAY, 1 APRIL 2019
SUBJECTS: The Budget, Labor’s Climate Change Action Plan.
KIERAN GILBERT: Now the Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh. Ahead of the budget, Mr Leigh, thanks very much for your time.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Pleasure.
GILBERT: Already the Government's come out saying this is a carbon tax. What do you say to their criticism, their critique already?
LEIGH: It's not. And if it were then their own policy would be a carbon tax. Kieran, this is simply an extension of a scheme put in place by Malcolm Turnbull. Business has told us that they are sick of the climate wars. They're sick of the bickering over climate and they want bipartisanship. Our view is the best way of achieving that is to extend the Turnbull Government's safeguard mechanism that applies to 0.01 per cent of companies, puts in place a pollution cap and is part of our commitment to seeing Australia meet our internationally agreed carbon targets. As you've said before, we're also taking advice from business to improve the scheme by giving firms access to international credits.Read more
THURSDAY, 28 MARCH 2019
FIONA PHILLIPS, LABOR CANDIDATE FOR GILMORE: Ok, I'd like to welcome everyone here today. I’m Fiona Phillips, Labor's Candidate for Gilmore. I'm here today with Senator Jenny McAllister, the Shadow Assistant Minister for Families and Communities and Dr Andrew Leigh, the Shadow Assistant Treasurer, but also the Shadow Minister for Charities.
Look, we are here today, we know that the Gilmore electorate - there's many people in the Gilmore electorate are doing it really, really tough and as Labor's candidate for Gilmore, for years and years, I have been listening to local stories. How people can't access financial counselling when in hardship. I have heard story after story, where people can't pay their bills. They can't afford to buy food and that is really increasing. So look, really, really pleased to have worked with the Labor team and today we’ve got a great announcement to basically increase funding for emergency relief and also to double the number of financial counsellors across Australia.Read more
ABC NEWS RADIO
THURSDAY, 28 MARCH 2019
SUBJECTS: Scott Morrison’s lack of leadership on One Nation, gun reform.
SANDY ALOISI: Labor MP Andrew Leigh is co-chair of the Parliamentary Friends of Gun Control. His legal mentor Zoe Hall and her boyfriend Glenn Pears were killed in the Port Arthur massacre. And Andrew Leigh says Pauline Hanson's apparent insinuations are disgusting.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Like many Australians, I was touched by the Port Arthur massacre. I’d been a junior lawyer working in a Sydney law firm, where my mentor Zoe Hall worked - just a wonderful, vivacious, smart lawyer who was one of the victims of that awful atrocity. I've met with Walter Mikac, who lost not only his wife Nanette, but also his two daughters Alannah and Madeline. So it's frankly just disgusting to me that anyone would suggest that this is some kind of a hoax. It was an awful, awful tragedy in which wonderful Australians died.Read more