Malcolm Turnbull may be just one vote away from a company tax win

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  • Proposal to cut company tax from 30 per cent to 25 per cent
  • New Tasmanian Senator Steve Martin adds his support for legislation
  • Turnbull now needs just one more senator to back the tax cut package

Momentum is growing behind the government’s company tax cut package after a fourth Senator confirmed he will back legislation for the remainder of the package.

New Tasmanian Senator Steve Martin, who replaced the disqualified dual citizen Jacqui Lambie, has confirmed he will be voting for the package in the interests of Tasmanian business.

With the three One Nation Senators and Derryn Hinch also contemplating supporting the legislation, the government could be as little as one vote short.

The two NXT senators are opposed, meaning pressure is about to intensify on South Australian independent senator Tim Storer, who was only sworn in on Monday.

Senator Martin joins Cory Bernardi, Fraser Anning and David Leyonhjelm in pledging support for the legislation, which will reduce the 30 per cent rate to 25 per cent by 2026-27.

“After extensive consideration and stakeholder engagement, it is apparent that priority needs to be given to ensuring Tasmanian businesses big and small are competitive in global markets,” he said.

“My position is about achieving the best deal for Tasmania, and strengthening Tasmania’s global export markets, bolstering jobs creation, wages growth and building sustainable communities.

“In that regard, I support the Government’s Company Tax Bill.”

Ms Lambie opposed the tax cuts but she expelled Senator Martin from her party for refusing to give her his Senate spot after she relinquished her dual British citizenship.

The government needs nine of the 11 Senate crossbenchers to pass the bill and it intends to put the legislation to a vote before Parliament rises on Wednesday next week for Easter.

The Senate has already passed the first three stages of the 10-year tax cut plan – a lowered rate for businesses with annual turnovers capped at $50 million.

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