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Coalition to target 'Albo-nomics' after Fadden win

Following an LNP win in a Queensland by-election, Deputy Liberal leader Sussan Ley will spearhead a coalition attack on Labor's economic management.



Emboldened by its by-election win in Queensland, the federal opposition is pivoting its attack on the government to focus on living costs and Labor's economic management.


Former Gold Coast City councillor Cameron Caldwell won the seat of Fadden for the LNP on Saturday, with a 2.5 per cent swing, after campaigning on the rising cost of living.


Deputy Liberal Leader Sussan Ley will spearhead the coalition's attack after announcing a blitz on federal seats across the country. 


On Sunday, she began in Treasurer Jim Chalmers' Queensland electorate Rankin and will travel up the state before visiting Victoria, Tasmania, and South Australia. 


Ms Ley said since Labor was elected to government in May 2022, it had squandered a crucial window to tackle high inflation with its "big tax and big spend approach".

"Australian families are hurting," she said.


"Every time they go to the checkout, reach the next mortgage repayment, or see a new bill come in, the costs are piling up, crushing families and smashing small businesses.


"Most Australians are feeling that pain, that feeling that things are getting harder.


"Well, I can tell Australians who to blame: Albo-nomics."


Ms Ley also hinted the coalition had something in its policy bag to give it an edge over Labor on the cost of living.


"Our policy development process is well and truly in train and there are at least 15 developed policies that are going through our party room and our processes," she later told reporters in Logan, outside Brisbane, on Sunday.


"Watch this space when we go back to Canberra.


"I know that Peter Dutton and the team will have much to say, as we always do, in the next session of parliament."


Ms Ley plans to visit 17 seats across four states in the final fortnight of the federal parliamentary recess before both houses resume sitting at the end of the month.


Asked about the government's appointment of Michele Bullock as the Reserve Bank of Australia's next governor, Ms Ley said the decision was "sound".


"The issue is ... the government is not doing their job," she told Sky News.

"They need a plan that kills inflation and we don't want them to continually turn and point to the RBA."


The RBA has been steadily raising the cash interest rate since May last year to the current 4.10 per cent, to rein in too-high inflation.


This has resulted in higher mortgage and lending rates for consumers.

The annualised consumer price index is about seven per cent and a long way from the central bank's preferred two to three per cent target range.


At the same, the economy appears to be slowing, albeit in line with Treasury forecasts.

Dr Chalmers said the government understood before the Fadden by-election that voters were "under the pump" on living costs.


"We're still providing cost-of-living relief, all of those things are really important," he told the ABC's Insiders program.


"If our economic plan and our next budget in May need to take into consideration a different set of economic conditions, obviously we'll do that too."


The central bank's next decision on interest rates will be revealed on the first Tuesday in August.


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