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April 19, 2021

Govt ‘to struggle for crossbench support’

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Prime Minister Tony Abbott (file picture).
Prime Minister Tony Abbott (file picture).

The Abbott government will struggle to get crossbench support in the Senate for some of the more contentious measures in the budget and may end up having to come back to parliament with a mini budget, independent Nick Xenophon says.

The government needs six of the 18 crossbenchers in the Senate to vote with them for legislation to pass, and in some cases they will struggle, the senator said.

‘I don’t think it’s out of the question that the government might have to go back to the parliament in a few months time with a mini budget and I don’t think that’s unreasonable,’ Senator Xenophon told ABC radio on Wednesday.

Like billionaire MP Clive Palmer, Senator Xenophon said it would good to have more staffing resources to help his office wade through the legislation that is up for debate.

Making sure he’s fully abreast of all the measures will be complex and time-consuming, he said.

‘It might end up killing me and my staff but we’ll do our best and see what happens,’ he said.


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