Tony Abbott Is Facing Rising Internal Opposition To His Proposed Deficit Levy

Prime Minister Tony Abbott (Photo: Getty/Stephen Postles)

Government MPs are openly questioning Tony Abbott’s proposed deficit levy, with one admitting they were prepared to cross the floor if becomes policy.

The ABC says Liberal Senator Cory Bernardi has also emailed supporters, warning of the “folly” of introducing new taxes.

“A conservative government should be taking less tax from people and expecting them to be more self-reliant,” he said.

“Taking more of their weekly wage will only act as a disincentive or make it even more unaffordable for people to do the right thing.”

Two weeks out from budget night, there is currently intense speculation about harsh measures that could be enforced to bring Australia’s coffers back into the black.

The commission of audit’s report will be released at 2pm AEST today, and is expected to contain a raft of drastic recommendations, which could see education and health spending curbed.

One of those measures is a possible levy on taxpayers earning more than $80,000 per year, which if legislated, would be a bitter pill from a government that promised it wouldn’t introduce new taxes.

The prime minister says its not a tax as it would only be temporary, though that explanation isn’t washing with many voters, and even conservative commentators have rubbished the logic.

Another Liberal senator Zed Seselja has also questioned the proposed levy during a radio interview, saying “I’m not a fan of a debt tax, I wouldn’t want to see that kind of thing imposed.”

At least one other MP, according to the ABC report, has requested further information on the possible impact from Treasury, and is yet to hear back.

There’s more here.

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