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Federal election campaign: Day 28 and 29

Day 28 and 29 and Liberal candidate Gurpal Singh, who previously made headlines for his past attempts to link marriage equality with pedophilia (a little awkward in the context with John Howard offering support to Dutton and Abbott, after his support of Pell, who would want that?). "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept," Mr Morrison said while attacking then-Labor candidate for Melbourne Luke Creasey - but apparently this didn't apply to one of his own. So Labor is making a point of this by advertising Gurpal's views on Grindr... and then the candidate was discovered to have previously attacking an alleged rape victim and that the perpetrator was the "real victim". Within a few hours, *then* they stood down.

Environment issues get some recognition with the Climate Council is warning that $571 billion could be wiped off Australian real estate values by 2030 unless future governments take action to tackle climate change. As one could expect, despite the government's protestations to the contrary, we are *not* on target to meet its 2030 pollution targets.$571-bln-off-real-estate-by-2030/11095330

Inconveniently for the government, the UN has released a comprehensive, multi-year report that revealed human society was under threat from the unprecedented extinction of the Earth’s animals and plants. The agriculture minister, David Littleproud, said the report “scared him”, during a debate on Wednesday. Weirdly, Morrison responded to the report saying: "We already introduced and passed legislation through the Senate actually dealing with that very issue in the last week of the parliament. We’ve been taking action on that." But no legislation regarding animal conservation or the environment was introduced in the final week of parliament (there was one on ... animal testing).

The Prime Minister, in what was the first major policy announcement (no details, I'm afraid) said that he wants to cut "green tape" (environmental laws) and "red tape" (labour laws). It is worth mentioning that the government has a poor record in managing extinction risks of native species by delaying threat assessment to their native habitats - in one case for three years. This is after a 38% funding cut ($533 million) to the environment budget since 2013. Clearing of Australian habitat relied on by threatened species is concentrated in just 12 federal electorates, nine of which are held by the Coalition.

The third debate was held, which by most accounts was a marginal victory making it 3-0. Scott Morrison won the weirdest line of the night with some time-travelling: "We have brought the Budget back to surplus next year". More important is the ABC Fact Check on various claims made during the night. To follow up Shorten's claims on housing affordability, the McKell Institute has said that Labor's $6.6bn housing affordability policy would save federal and state governments up to $10.8bn. On another matter of fact-checking, Labor has argued that an astounding $77 billion worth of proposed Coalition tax cuts goes to people earning more than $180,000. Whilst the government has rejected such a figure, they've refused to confirm how much it will be. The ABC has done the work for them and said that the claim checks out (in fact, Labor may have *under-estimated* the extent of the "reverse Robin Hood" policy.

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