Black hole bonanza an expensive bid to earn votes
IT'S hard to find someone who misses out in this Budget.
You buying a house? Here's some money.
Need to retrain for a job? Here's some money.
You a working woman? Got young kids? Running a small business? Entering retirement?
Money, money, money, money.
There's cash for people at every stage of their life as the Morrison Government unashamedly sells itself for re-election in this black hole bonanza of a budget.
Indeed, the red ink will drip down these pages for years - who knows when we'll see a surplus again as debt blows out to an eye watering $980.6 billion this year before winding back.
But while the Morrison Government could have used the cover of a pandemic to borrow wildly and cash up voter pockets, these measures aren't about 'buying votes'.
They're about earning them as the government seeks to create jobs and improve lives.
While there's the usual baubles - pre-budget tax cuts of up to $2160 for working couples, relief for tradies to write off the cost of a new ute, and help for young people buying their first home - the government doesn't forget the often forgotten people.
Because even if we're doing pretty well at the moment in this pandemic, we all know someone who isn't.
Perhaps it's a mate whose mental health has suffered, a friend with an abusive partner, a sister who's having trouble getting pregnant, or an ageing parent who keeps us up at night with worry?
Well, there's targeted support for mental health and suicide prevention, for women to leave dangerous relationships and find financial independence, for endometriosis research and regional GPs and a major injection into fixing broken aged care.
The Morrison Government uses this Budget to reset itself after some of the missteps its made in recent months.
It's building back trust with women after revelations around its treatment of women following the Brittney Higgins allegations and with Baby Boomers the sickening stories that emerged from the Royal Commission into Aged Care.
It also rededicates itself to the vaccine rollout with $1.9 billion in extra funding just as its stalling efforts so far come under scrutiny.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Treasurer Josh Frydenberg have guided the country through the pandemic with an economy recover faster than anyone ever expected and voters are thankful for that.
By the time they cast their votes, either this year or next, the government hopes they'll have even more to be thankful for.
Originally published as Black hole bonanza an expensive bid to earn votes