WEDNESDAY, 2 FEBRUARY 2022
SUBJECTS: Cost of living; Labor’s plans to help get wages moving; the Reserve Bank’s decision on rates; Labor’s plans to make multinationals pay their fair share.
TOM CONNELL, HOST: One of the big moments yesterday at the National Press Club was the Prime Minister being asked about a host of everyday items. Was it just a journalism gotcha, a typical Canberra bubble question? Did it show the PM is out of touch with the cost of living? It might depend, of course, on your political viewpoint on all of that, but it's become a talking point regardless. For more on this I'm joined by Labor's Shadow Assistant Minister for the Treasury, Andrew Leigh. Thanks for your time. Look, you're a deep thinking politician. I'm not being in the pejorative here, you're probably quite a sort of highbrow politician. What did you make of this question asked of the Prime Minister?
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: Well, it's not the most important issue in politics, Tom. But I was surprised that the Prime Minister couldn't even name the price of petrol, given that it's gone over two bucks for the first time on his watch and is now in many places sitting around $1.70. It illustrated to many people that this is a prime minister who hasn't noticed that prices are rising for many people faster than their pay packets. He's just brought down a budget which has real wages forecast to fall, and yet we've got prices of housing, childcare, basic essential items going through the roof. It's just not good enough for Scott Morrison to be saying that things are fine and dandy when so many households feel like there's always more month than money, and feeling that the squeeze that the Morrison Government is putting on their household finances is more than they can bear.Read more
TUESDAY, 1 FEBRUARY 2022
SUBJECTS: Labor’s plans to make multinationals pay their fair share; Tax policies.
LIAM BARTLETT, HOST: We're joined this morning by Andrew Leigh. Andrew is the federal Labor Shadow Assistant Minister for Treasury and Charities, and will have a lot to do with this sort of tax policy during the campaign. How are you this morning, Andrew?
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: I'm terrific, Liam. How are you?
BARTLETT: I'm okay. Now, let's get to the bottom of this. What does your leader mean by that reference, the issue of multinationals?
LEIGH: Well, Anthony's concerned that at the moment two-fifths of multinational profits are booked through tax havens, places like the Bahamas and the Cayman Islands. And that means that if you're a regular Aussie business competing against a multinational, then you're doing it with one hand tied behind your back. Because multinationals are making use of the same sort of hidey holes that are being used by terrorists and kidnappers and drug runners. Tax havens have become a cancer on the global tax system, and so Anthony Albanese is determined to do something about that - not only to ensure that we get more revenue into the government coffers, but also because it's not fair on regular Australian firms to be going up against multinational tax dodgers.Read more
ABC RADIO MELBOURNE
TUESDAY, 1 FEBRUARY 2022
SUBJECTS: Labor’s plans to make multinationals pay their fair share; the Liberals’ track record of inaction; the RBA meeting on rates and household budgets; Aged Care; billions in JobKeeper funds going to firms with rising revenue.
VIRGINIA TRIOLI, HOST: I'm always happy to talk to you, Andrew Leigh. Good morning.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: Good morning, Virginia. Great to be with you.
TRIOLI: Because the government is saying that Anthony Albanese is failing to rule out higher taxes, and he's going to one particular point about that, which is about the taxing on multinationals. And that actually is an area where you as opposition and government do want to see multinationals paying more taxes than they have right now. But when it comes to general taxation, and perhaps any threat of future taxation on general PAYG employees in this country, is Anthony Albanese clear? Will there be no new taxes on them?
LEIGH: We've been clear on that, that we're not going to be pursuing the measures on individual taxpayers we took to the last election. But we've got to do more on multinational taxation, Virginia. We've got two-fifths of multinational profits currently booked through tax havens. We've got some $100 billion of Australian moguls’ money sitting in tax havens - places like the Bahamas and Panama, where there are very low tax rates and where on one estimate four-fifths of the money is there in breach of other country's tax laws. Now, these aren't just tax avoidance mechanisms. These are also the places where terrorists, kidnappers, drug kingpins store their money. We have to crack down on tax havens, because they’re a cancer on the global tax system. I've found it remarkable that yesterday two of your Victorian ministers, Michael Sukkar and Jane Hume, put out a press release criticising Anthony Albanese for wanting to do more on multinational taxation. In Victoria, we had the incident a couple of years ago of the Stawell tyre dump being transferred to a company in Panama in order to avoid their clean-up obligations. Some 9 million tyres sitting at that dump and the attempt of the owners was to shift its ownership off to Panama, to a tax haven, and thereby avoid their liabilities. And it's that sort of problem that Labor wants to address.Read more
PAUL MURRAY LIVE
THURSDAY, 27 JANUARY 2022
SUBJECTS: Labor’s Power to the People plan; Labor’s plans to reduce cost of living pressures; Supply chain issues, Scott Morrison failing Australians on rapid antigen tests.
PAUL MURRAY, HOST: Joining us right now representing the government is the Resources Minister Keith Pitt. Representing the Labor Party is Andrew Leigh, who is their Shadow Assistant Minister for Treasury. Lads, hello. Hopefully you both had a good summer.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: G’day, Paul. G’day, Keith.
KEITH PITT: It’s the electrician versus the economist.Read more
2SM MARCUS PAUL IN THE MORNING
MONDAY, 17 JANUARY 2022
SUBJECTS: Novak Djokovic; Scott Morrison’s failure to call out antivaxxers in his own Government; Rapid Antigen Test shortage and Scott Morrison’s failure to plan ahead; Deloitte downgrading Australia’s economic forecast.
MARCUS PAUL, HOST: Time to catch up with Shadow Assistant Minister for Treasury and Charities and federal Member for Fenner, Andrew Leigh. Good morning, Andrew. How are you, mate?
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: Terrific, Marcus. The better for being with you today.
PAUL: Thank you. I hope you’re well. You haven't contracted COVID yet, have you?
LEIGH: No. Our family’s been thankfully COVID free, but there's certainly a lot of about at the moment.
LEIGH: Running rampant through the community.
PAUL: Alright. Well, one of the big issues of course - it's hard to escape - Novak Djokovic. I guess the question needs to be asked, and maybe after the tournament itself has been run and won maybe Tennis Australia can pony up and answer some questions, but why was he ever given a visa in the first place?Read more
TUESDAY, 14 DECEMBER 2021
SUBJECTS: Scott Morrison’s inaction costing charities millions; Cost of food at Parliament House.
TONY PILKINGTON, HOST: Joining me on the program right now is Dr Andrew Leigh, who's the federal Shadow Assistant Minister for Charities. God, that's a mouthful. By the time you actually do the introductions, it’ll be time to go. Andrew, good morning and welcome to Adelaide.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: Thanks, Tony. Great to be with you.
PILKINGTON: Now. Tell us sir, you say that charities because of the colossal amount of bookwork that they've got to go through - something like, I can't believe this, well I can because of the red tape. You say there are seven sets of forms that can take charities weeks and weeks to complete before they can actually launch an advertising campaign to get some money, so charitable donations and especially at this time of the year. What's this all about?
LEIGH: Tony, when we were kids, charities that wanted to raise money would typically go door to door. So charitable fundraising laws are written in the pre internet age, and it's done state and territory one at a time. But that means that if you're a charity that wants to raise money over the internet nationwide, you have to register in seven different jurisdictions. And that can take a staff member up to a week of charity time to do all of that paperwork. That's time they're not spending helping the vulnerable, focusing on the environment, looking after their parishioners. So as a result of this outdated patchwork of laws, charities are being cost over a million dollars a month. It's a sensible thing to get fixed. A bipartisan Senate report came down in 2018, and yet the Morrison Government's done absolutely nothing. Charities are going into another Christmas season with those outdated laws still in place.Read more
2SM MARCUS PAUL IN THE MORNING
TUESDAY, 14 DECEMBER 2021
SUBJECTS: The ACT’s world leading vaccination rate; Scott Morrison’s failures on vaccines and quarantine; Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg’s failures on the economy; MYEFO; What’s the Worst That Could Happen; Migration.
MARCUS PAUL, HOST: Andrew Leigh for the last time this year, until next year 2022. Let's chat to Andrew Leigh about a little federal politics. Morning, mate.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: Morning, mate. How are you?
PAUL: All right. You've been on your run this morning?
LEIGH: Absolutely. Beautiful day out in Canberra today.
PAUL: What is it there? Is it 98 or 99 per cent fully vaxxed?
LEIGH: So our big risk was we go over 100 per cent, Marcus-
LEIGH: We're working off 2016 Census numbers, so we weren’t sure precisely how many adults we have. But yes, it’s almost universal among over 12s, which is really, really good to see. I think this reflects the kind of community mindedness of many Canberrans - the willingness to get vaccinated not just for yourself, but for your community too.Read more
ABC MELBOURNE MORNINGS
MONDAY, 13 DECEMBER 2021
SUBJECTS: ‘What's the Worst That Could Happen? Existential Risk and Extreme Politics’; Populism and anti-vaccination protests; taxation; climate change; the federal election.
VIRGINIA TRIOLI, HOST: Dr Andrew Leigh is the Shadow Assistant Minister, of course, for Treasury, and the Federal Labor MP for Fenner. He joins us now. Andrew Leigh, good to talk. Good morning.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: Good morning, Virginia. Great to be here.
TRIOLI: It's not an easy sell this, talking about the existential threats to humanity and how we've got a one in six chance of being wiped out. I mean, it's not a nice sunny Monday morning chat, Andrew Leigh.
LEIGH: Disaster movies do surprisingly well. I think The Matrix will rate well when it opens. The Terminator, Waterworld, Blade Runner 2049, Contagion - you know, we're interested in these things as entertainment. What I'm trying to do in this book is to segue that into actually taking steps to make sure that we avert catastrophe. You know, if it's true that we're got a one in six chance of humanity being wiped out in the next century, that means you're 15 times as likely to die from catastrophic risk as you are from a car accident. So we should be taking pretty seriously.Read more
PARLIAMENT HOUSE, CANBERRA
SATURDAY, 11 DECEMBER 2021
SUBJECTS: MYEFO preview; Scott Morrison’s slogans on migration; Labor’s plans to increase job opportunities and university places; border closures; inflation.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: Thanks everyone for coming along today. My name is Andrew Leigh, the Shadow Assistant Minister for Treasury. While good governments take the blame on their own shoulders and pass the credit on to others, Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg are just the opposite. The moment the Australian economy is struggling, they're nowhere to be seen. They're racing for a headline the moment there's any chance of an uptick. At the start of this year, Australia had the slowest vaccine rollout in the advanced world. And in the September quarter, partly as a result of that, we reported the worst quarterly growth performance in the advanced world. The third worst number on record for Australia. And that number was bad partly as a result of the government’s failures on vaccines and quarantine. Now inevitably after such an appalling growth figure, the Australian economy will rebound. Eventually, it has to come back and the credit for that will go to the Australian people, not to the Morrison Government. The Morrison Government is a bit like a guy who digs a really deep hole, and then wants people to pat him on the back as he starts to make his way out of it. The fact is that the Australian economy is struggling. Right now we've got real wages going backwards. We've got housing affordability at historic lows, and we have many Australians feeling that their pay packet just isn't keeping up with the cost of living.Read more
2SM WITH MARCUS PAUL IN THE MORNING
TUESDAY, 7 DECEMBER 2021
SUBJECTS: Gladys Berejiklian; Labor’s Powering Australia plan; Labor’s plan for education and training; Fish and chips prices; George Christensen and Alex Jones.
MARCUS PAUL, HOST: Andrew Leigh, good morning.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR TREASURY AND CHARITIES: Good morning, Marcus.
PAUL: Look, I'm just gauging some of the response this morning - both online, on air, messages to my program - but I'm looking elsewhere as well, and I think Scott Morrison is going to find himself in trouble over this. Because even you know on the Herald sites, the Telegraph and others – the Tele is quite telling if, I can say, the News Corp rag - because even online people are having a crack at Scott Morrison as well.
LEIGH: Well there’s the fundamental principle of separation of powers, which says that parliamentarians shouldn't be involved in what the police and what the judiciary do. So Scott Morrison's attacks on ICAC, I think speak volumes about his willingness to interfere in that process. Parliamentarians should be letting that process run its course. As you said, Gladys Berejiklian has been called as a witness to ICAC, and based on that she chose to step down as New South Wales Premier. I think it's interesting that Scott Morrison makes the decision now that somebody who's stepped down because they're appearing before ICAC as a witness is somebody he's very keen to get as a candidate running for him in the next election.Read more