Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Liberal admits grocery tax will push up cost of living

The Liberals have admitted Tony Abbott will put a tax on business that will increase the cost of living if he’s ever elected.

Tony Abbott wants ordinary Australians to pay more at the checkout so he can pay wealthy mums $75,000 to have a baby through his paid parental leave plan. Even Gina Rinehart – Australia’s richest woman – would get $75,000 from Tony Abbott to have another baby.

On ABC’s Q&A last night, the Member for Indi, Sophie Mirabella, admitted:

“It is a small levy on a small number of businesses.”

When asked what the impact of the Liberals grocery tax would be, she also admitted it would drive up prices at the checkout.

“I’m assuming businesses will have a cost structure that reflect their costs. So if that modest cost increase [from the levy] is incorporated in their prices then sure.”

She also made clear the Liberals would roll back the Gillard Government’s generous increases to the pension and family payments, and new tax cuts which started on Sunday.

Ms Mirabella made no commitment to help any Australian who would pay more at the checkout to fund the Liberals’ millionaire mums paid parental leave plan.

The Liberals say their new grocery tax will raise $3 billion a year (source: 2010 Coalition election policy).

That’s $3 billion the Liberals will take from the pockets of everyday Australians.

The facts speak for themselves. Tony Abbott’s Liberals will hurt pensioners and low and middle income families.

Only Labor understands the pressures on pensioners and working families. We’ve already delivered Australia’s first Government-funded Paid Parental Leave scheme – it’s been successfully supporting families for 18 months. And we’ll continue to work hard to deliver other much-needed support, while cutting carbon pollution and keeping our economy strong.