Mr Swan used an address to the National Press Club, following the launch of his new book — The Good Fight: Six Years, Two Prime Ministers and Staring Down the Great Recession — to provide an insight into how the Labor government of the time responded to the global financial crisis. "It is important to show what a real emergency was and … how we dealt with (it)," he said.
The coalition has indicated it will consider alterations to its planned $7 GP co-payment, tougher welfare rules and deregulation of university fees — all of which face opposition in the Senate. "If you don't like what the government is putting up, give us your alternative," Mr Abbott said. "There was some alternatives that came up from one of the crossbench members of the federal parliament and, frankly, they didn't stack up for five minutes.
Tony Abbott has bitten the bullet after several weeks of ministerial floundering, indicating he'll consider alternatives to tough budget measures. "What we're not prepared to do is sell out the fundamentals," the prime minister said on Monday.
Shadow treasurer Chris Bowen says Mr Hockey has lost control of the budget narrative. "No amount of tinkering, no amount of window dressing, no amount of cosmetics will change the fundamental unfairness of this budget," he told reporters in Canberra.
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