Parliamentary Statement 27th May 2014


I rise to talk about the disproportionate impact of the Abbott government's first budget on rural Australia.

When you put fuel taxes up it hits rural Australia hardest. When you put a GP tax on, it hits rural Australia harder. When you cut hospital funding to the states, it will first hit rural hospitals. When you cut university funding it will hit regional universities hardest.

Those on the other side apparently do not understand rural Australia. And those on the coalition backbench—those marginal seat holders who represent rural seats—should be in here defending their constituents. They should be in here on the budget debate, defending their rural constituents. Yet we learn every day that they are missing in action. They are compliant with their leader and it is time they stood up for their constituents. It is time they stood up for rural and regional Australia.

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