Prime minister Malcolm Turnbull has warned Australians of the ALP’s “recipe for economic stagnation” at the Coalition’s campaign launch ahead of the July 2 election.
Many gathered at Olympic Park in the western Sydney electorate of Reid today including former PMs Tony Abbott and John Howard, deputy leader Julie Bishop, NSW premier Mike Baird as well as Turnbull’s family.
The Coalition’s campaign launch stood out from Labor’s launch last week with attacks ads played against a bright blue backdrop in between opening addresses by Bishop and Barnaby Joyce before welcoming Turnbull with a video of his childhood and younger years with Lucy.
Turnbull kicked things off with a strong affirmation of his “jobs and growth” mantra and the Coalition’s economic plan saying that “only the Liberal National Coalition can deliver that plan, that security, that leadership.”
“A strong economy means that senior Australians know their children will be in good jobs, their investments will deliver better returns and that Government will have growing revenues to support their pensions and health care,” he said.
In his address, Turnbull criticised Labor’s policies suggesting that opposition leader Bill Shorten would “run the nation like a trade union” and that “every element of [Labor’s] platform will discourage investment and employment. A recipe for economic stagnation.”
“When he’s not trying to frighten older Australians, Mr Shorten is prosecuting an anti-business, anti-growth agenda more toxic and backward-looking than any Labor leader in a generation,” he said.
“Tax hikes on business and investment; more special deals for his union mates; higher deficits and higher debt. Every element of his platform will discourage investment and employment. A recipe for economic stagnation.”
In his speech, Turnbull pledged:
- $73.6 billion over next four years for all Australian schools
- $48 million in scholarships under the Smith Family’s Learning for Life program
- $31 million to encourage more girls and women to take up STEM in both studies and work
- $50 million Coalition strategy to assist seniors and improve their digital literacy skills
- $192 million in frontline mental health services including 12 suicide prevention sites and 10 Headspace centres
- $64 million to tackle the trafficking of illegal firearms
With global financial markets still dealing with the repercussion of Britain’s shock vote to leave the European Union, Turnbull also said that it was a timely reminder to “always expect the unexpected”.
“The shockwaves in the past 48 hours from Britain’s vote to exit the European Union are a sharp reminder of the volatility in the global economy,” said Turnbull.
“We will need to renegotiate vital trade deals with Europe and Britain. We concluded five in the last three years – Japan, Korea, China, Singapore and the Trans Pacific Partnership.”
Turnbull wrapped up the launch stressing the Coalition’s national economic plan, suggesting any other vote would be one for instability.
“At this election for our nation’s leadership, I am asking Australians to make a clear choice — to back a strong and stable Coalition majority government that can press ahead with our plan for a stronger new economy,” he said.
“Vote for anyone other than the Liberal and National Party candidates, and the risk is that Australians will next week find themselves with Bill Shorten as prime minister — and no certainty about their future.”
The launch coincides with Labor’s Medicare rally in Brisbane and The Greens’ national launch in Melbourne.
The federal election takes places next Saturday.
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