Sky News AM Agenda with Laura Jayes

16 May 2024


LAURA JAYES, HOST: Rebates, cheaper medicines, rent relief. They were the biggest takeaways. Is it enough? Peter Dutton will reveal his key policy initiatives when he delivers the budget and reply tonight, which is expected to focus heavily on migration and housing. Joining me is Assistant Trade and Manufacturing Minister Tim Ayres. Tim, good to see you. There's a lot of focus on, on why this energy rebate wasn't means tested. Do you have an answer as to why?

SENATOR TIM AYRES: Yeah, well it's the same answer that the Treasurer gave yesterday. Andon Tuesday evening. It's more efficient to do it that way. It's an absolutely straightforward simple way of dealing with this, other payments are dealt with in the same way COVID assistance payments were dealt with in the same way. It's a very straightforward proposition and don’t forget that similar measures that the government undertook over the course of 2023 lowered inflation and held down energy price rises.


SENATOR AYRES: Peter Dutton voted against them. There's a desperate search for a rationale for the negativity and complacency that Peter Dutton has been displaying and this is, you know, not to lift arguments that they have made, there are severe ones. But you know, it's not serious like we've engaged in the fight against inflation. Peter Dutton’s engaged in partisanship.

LAURA JAYES: Your own papers show that bracket creep will cost Australians $6 billion, even with the tax cuts.

SENATOR AYRES:  But bracket creep is a feature of every income tax system. It's not a new development. These tax cuts will offer a tax cut for every single Australian PAYG taxpayer, 13.6million of them, 85% of those will get much bigger tax cuts then Scott Morrison and Peter Dutton were offering them before. This is good news for Australian taxpayers. Anthony Albanese's reform of the tax system.

LAURA JAYES: I don't know why you're on a tiny screen, but…

SENATOR AYRES: I'm not sure what's happening there, Laura. I've come on your show, and I've gotten smaller. I'm not sure what's happening!

LAURA JAYES: That's okay. Look, I think we might leave it there for today. Tim, always good to talk to you but not when you're so tiny so we might pick it up again next week after Peter Dutton’s budget reply we'll see soon.