Charles Hopkins, a previous Perth Lord Mayor, made a stinging criticism of Malcolm Turnbull yesterday saying; “He is more focused on same sex marriages and telephone calls with Donald Trump than Western Australia’s dire financial position. His lack of leadership and shallow rhetoric this week has made it very clear that he has turned his back on the largest per capita contributor to the nation’s balance of trade.”
After fending off a barrage of criticism and polling showing the coalition could lose four seats at the next federal election, Malcolm Turnbull left his tour of WA this week with no concrete progress on the GST issue.
He answered critics by claiming to be the first prime minister to tackle the GST problem facing WA by charging the Productivity Commission to analyse the tax allocation formula in recognition of the “unfairness” of the situation, a claim that Mr Hopkins flatly rejected.
“Turnbull has admitted any change would need the support of the other states. The other states are never going to accept a lowering of their GST revenues to accommodate a fix for WA, even if the Productivity Commission delivers a finding in favour of WA. It will never happen”.
“Turnbull should not be deflecting this issue to the Productivity Commission, Bill Shorten, the other state governments, or anyone else… he is the only one that has the power to fix the problem”, Mr Hopkins said.
Charles Hopkins recently announced the formation of a new micro-party to fight for a better deal for WA on GST allocations, the Put WA First Party.
Charles said ‘the single objective of the party is to achieve a fair GST dividend for WA with no strings attached, we have a right to this. We don’t want another one-off freebie, we want 80 cents in the dollar paid to WA legitimately, without any trade offs, concessions or conditions.
We haven’t come across a West Australian yet, that doesn’t support us on this issue and believe the only way to fix the GST is at the ballot box”, Said Mr Hopkins.
The Put WA First Party plans to run a team of candidates for the Senate at the forthcoming Federal Elections.