Shadow Treasurer Rob Lucas has written to the Auditor-General Simon O’Neill seeking an investigation of the Weatherill Labor Government’s advertisements attacking the Abbott Coalition Government’s health and education budget cuts.
“This is political advertising plain and simple and the million dollar cost should be paid for by the Labor Party not the South Australian taxpayer,” said Mr Lucas.
The Government Marketing and Communications Guidelines, released in March 2013, state that:
Public Funds should not be used for communications where:
• A reasonable person could misinterpret the message as being on behalf of a political party or other grouping…
• A political party or other grouping is being disparaged or held up to ridicule.
This $1 million advertising campaign is a clear breach of the State Government’s own rules.
“The key to understanding the political nature of the advertising is that it contains no mention of the proposed Weatherill Labor Government cuts to health and education,” said Mr Lucas.
“The advertisements make no reference to the Weatherill Government’s own savage budget cuts of $3.2 billion, including cuts to health and education
“Whilst the State Liberals have already indicated they do not support the federal cuts to health and education it is hypocritical of the Weatherill Government not to mention 75 per cent of all budget cuts over the next 4 years are actually state budget cuts inflicted by Mr Weatherill.
“The perversity of the Weatherill Labor Government wasting money on political advertising condemning Federal cuts whilst it plans its own cuts to health and education can’t be under estimated.”