Michael Sukkar MP

Federal Member for Deakin.
Minister for Housing & Assistant Treasurer.
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Chris Bowen’s address to the McKell Institute’s Housing Affordability Summit this morning gives him the perfect opportunity to finally front up and explain the dodgy ‘modelling’ of Labor’s disastrous negative gearing proposal.

Labor claims their housing tax has been “modelled to death”, with the McKell Institute being one of the groups supposedly leading the charge.

But their 2015 report, which Labor claims specifically models their policy, clearly doesn’t provide any answers.

Chris Bowen needs to come clean. It’s time for him to admit:

  • Labor didn’t even commission the report, which was released six months before their policy was announced;
  • The report considers a Labor-like negative gearing proposal in just one page and provides no detailed analysis of the impact of the proposal on house prices or rents;
  • It is specifically stated in the report that It is beyond the scope to provide a detailed estimate of the amount this [new property construction] would increase”, and a vague claim that “a 10 per cent increase ‘could’ occur”;
  • It comes from an Institute where over half of the board and executive are former Labor MPs, staff or union officials.It gets worse. In a follow-up report in 2016, after Labor’s policy was announced, the McKell Institute continued to downplay the reach of their analysis, and agreed with the Government that the key to housing affordability is supply, stating, “Although it is beyond the scope of this exercise to quantify the size of the improvement in housing affordability, it is worth noting that increasing housing is the best policy instrument to use.”Chris Bowen and Labor are still grasping at straws, trying to find ways to spruik their housing tax. They need to be reminded of the facts:
  • 2 million taxpayers in Australia have an interest in a residential investment property.
  • 72 per cent own just one property, and 90 per cent own no more than two.
  • 1.3 million of these taxpayers negatively gear their investments, including 58,000 teachers and one in five police officers.
  • Two thirds of those taxpayers who negatively gear their investments have a taxable income of $80,000 or less.

Labor’s farce of a policy just continues to unravel. It’s high time for Chris Bowen to accept the facts and once and for all come clean on these dodgy ‘modelling’ claims.

Media contact: Julianna Burgess – 0428 401 559