PARLIAMENT HOUSE, CANBERRA
THURSDAY, 3 JUNE 2021
SUBJECT: Victorian lockdown; Your Future, Your Super Bill.
STEPHEN JONES, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Good morning. I'm going to start by saying that our hearts go out to Victorians, who are probably feeling pretty desperate after the announcement that their very necessary lockdown has been extended by a week. I think all Australians are feeling for Victorians today.
I want to say something about the hot mess that's going on with superannuation policy, because last night in the Parliament, the backbench woke up. The back bench led by the National Party and many within the Liberal Party have realised the Government’s plan to overhaul the superannuation laws in this country has gone desperately off the rails. It's a big mistake. They've understood that no Liberal, no conservative, could possibly vote for a proposition which gives the Treasurer the right to cancel a private sector investment. They have worked out that the Government's plan to staple members to funds that the Government agrees is so bad that no new members should be allowed to join them, yet the Government wants to staple people to those funds for life? It's got to go. So we're calling on the Government to do the right thing. Be sensible, put your ego aside and let's sort this issue out. We want to see high-performing superannuation funds in this country. Labor created super. We want to see that it's performing at the best level in the world. But we can't be a party to a proposition that introduces Hugo Chavez-type powers where the Treasurer of the day can cancel a private sector investment just because he doesn't like it and we're stapling people to underperforming funds. You know, it's absolutely ridiculous. If a Labor Government tried to introduce a proposition like this, we would be laughed off the hill. And that's exactly what the Liberal Party and the National Party are doing to Josh Frydenberg today. He’s being laughed off the hill. Time for him to put his ego aside, sort out this hot mess, work with Labor. We're willing to do it. But we're not going to vote for the absolute dog of a Bill that you've got before the Parliament at the moment.