Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Julia Gillard prepares to face questions on broken carbon tax promise


Julia Gillard is expecting a hostile reception from the public on her upcoming carbon roadshow, conceding she will be tackled on her broken tax promise as she travels the country next week.

The Prime Minister has promised to “wear out” her shoe leather as moves around the country answering questions from voters on her carbon tax, to be unveiled on Sunday. “I suspect they will want to raise issues with me about what was said during the election campaign, and I'll be happy to answer their questions,” she told parliament's question time. “I'll be happy to explain to them that the carbon tax is temporary and the emissions trading scheme is permanent.

“I'll be happy to explain to them that I always wanted to achieve an emissions trading scheme for this nation and we will.” Ms Gillard promised days before the last election that “there will be no carbon tax under a government I lead”. Today, she said the introduction of a carbon tax before an emissions trading scheme was a “different route than I foresaw at the election campaign - we will seize that clean energy future”.

Tony Abbott asked Ms Gillard if she would apologise for her broken promise to workers in at-risk businesses and regions. “Will the Prime Minister wear out her shoe leather next week visiting car workers in Geelong, steel workers in Port Kembla, coal miners in the Hunter and the Illawarra and transport workers in Queanbeyan as I have?” the Opposition Leader asked.

Ms Gillard in turn said Mr Abbott should apologise for the “wholly untrue” claim that petrol would rise by 6.5 cents a litre under the carbon tax. She challenged him to explain to voters why he had backed John Howard's proposal for an emissions trading scheme while a member of the cabinet in 2007.

Treasurer Wayne Swan said the release of the full carbon tax package would mark a turnaround in the government's climate campaign. “We absolutely look forward to this debate so all of the scaremongering from those opposite can be exposed for what it is,” he said.

Author and source: John Mossala, The Australia 06.07.2011

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