AusTender documents reveal that Christopher Pyne is spending $150,000 on consultants to try and negotiate his unfair and unnecessary plan for $100,000 degrees through the Senate.
Splashing more than $30,000 a week on lobbying will not help Christopher Pyne find a way out of his deregulation disaster as cross-benchers have publicly stated they are unchanged in their opposition to Mr Pyne’s package.
It is time for Mr Pyne to stop wasting the Senate’s time and either put up or shut up.
Mr Pyne has already spent $15 million of taxpayers’ money on a misleading ad campaign that saw more Australians opposed to his package after the campaign than before it.
Throwing more money at his defunct package will not see the Senate accept the unacceptable and pass it on the third attempt, after being voted down twice already.
In January, Australians were told the changes would be dumped if the Senate did not pass the legislation by the end of March.
When March came and the Senate rejected the plan, we were told that the Parliament would see the bill again in its winter sitting.
That didn’t happen, and now it has been pushed back to the spring sitting which is set to begin on Monday.
The Abbott Government needs to admit that burdening Australian students with a life time of debt has been a bad idea from the very beginning.
There will be no third-time-lucky for Mr Pyne’s defunct package.
It is now time for the Abbott Government to repair the damage and deliver certainty to Australian universities and students.
Labor remains committed to a fair, sustainable, high quality university system that ensures young Australians get a degree, not a debt sentence.