Last September, Australians saw Malcolm Turnbull make economic leadership the central argument for rolling Tony Abbott as Prime Minister.
“[Tony Abbott] has not been capable of providing the economic leadership our nation needs,” Malcolm Turnbull said.
But seven months on, it’s clear economic leadership is still lacking.
When Labor was last in Government, we faced, and met, the challenge of the Global Financial Crisis.
Australia was one of the only developed countries in the world not to go into recession during the Global Financial Crisis (GFC).
A recession would have thrown hundreds of thousands of people – a generation – into unemployment and we were determined not to let that happen.
Labor’s stimulus package saved Australian jobs in the most difficult global circumstances since the 1930s – up to 200,000 jobs.
Despite the GFC, Australia received a Triple-A credit rating from the three major ratings agencies for the first time in Australia’s history.
Our Gross Domestic Product (the total value of goods and service produced by a country in a year) per capita rose from a ranking of 17th to eighth in the world.
And we went from being the 15th biggest economy in the world to being the 12th.
That was not good luck. That was good management.
Since the Liberals were elected in 2013, we’ve seen nothing but bad management.
This Liberals lost more jobs in their first six months (54,000 full-time jobs) than were lost at the height of the GFC.
The Liberals have also: more than doubled the deficit; increased net debt by $100 billion; increased taxes (as a proportion of GDP); and they’re still spending at Global Financial Crisis levels.
All of this while the Liberals have cut funding for schools, hospitals, family payments, and the pension.
It takes a special kind of talent - a special kind of government - to cut the services Australians depend on and increase spending and debt at the same time.
Under the Liberals living standards have continued to fall. They’ve now fallen for 7 straight quarters, the first time this has happened since records began in the 1970s.
Westpac’s consumer sentiment reading remains 14% down since the election.
The Government has presided over record underemployment which means there are hundreds of thousands of people not getting the hours at work they need.
Record low wages growth and falling living standards will be the legacy of this Prime Minister and his inability to put in place any economic plan for the future.