Bill Shorten spruiking cancer spending in Perth

Bill Shorten. Photo: AAP
Bill Shorten. Photo: AAP

BILL Shorten is in Perth today, spruiking his plan to spend $20 million on a new program to make it easier for blood cancer patients to get into drug trials.

Labor’s announcement is part of a $2.3 billion election promise for Medicare and cancer research.

Labor is targeting Liberal minister Ken Wyatt’s Perth seat of Hasluck, as well as Attorney-General Christian Porter’s seat of Pearce.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison, meanwhile, will promise $100 million for five Tasmanian irrigation projects benefiting the horticulture sector, as the Liberal Party eyes three seats in Tasmania.

Both leaders have spent almost all their time in Liberal seats since the election was called last week, with the coalition underdogs to retain government.

The Liberals and Nationals say $3 billion of federal money is available for water infrastructure.

Mr Morrison will also pledge $30 million for a new defence precinct at the University of Tasmania in Launceston.

The opposition is looking to sharpen its tax counterattack, seizing on Grattan Institute research about promised cuts and budget surpluses.

The analysis shows the government’s proposal would require a $40 billion cut in services by 2030 if fully implemented.

“The only way the Liberals can pay for their tax handouts to the top end of town is by cutting schools and hospitals,” shadow treasurer Chris Bowen said.

The prime minister dismissed the figures as “complete rubbish”.

Tax has been a key issue for Mr Morrison, who argues Labor’s plans will burden the economy with $387 billion in extra payments.

Labor disputes that because it opposes $230 billion in unconfirmed personal tax cuts not due until 2022 and 2024.

On Tuesday, Mr Morrison made a plea to seniors, arguing Labor’s plans to scrap franking credits would hurt them.

He also promised no new or increased taxes on superannuation, which Mr Shorten said he had no plans to do as well.

– AAP

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