Clive Palmer
Clive Palmer Brett Wortman

Asylum policies make us a world joke, tweets Palmer

AUSTRALIAN policies on asylum seekers are the laughing stock of the world, billionaire politician Clive Palmer says.

He also believes the the government needs to cut taxes rather than slashing services to get the economy going.

The leader of the Palmer United Party took aim at both issues on Twitter today.

First he tweeted: "@KRuddMP razor gang cutting services to reduce the budget black hole will hurt economic growth. Cut taxes to get money circulating #auspol".

Just over an hour later came: "Asylum seeker policies of @KRuddMP and @TonyAbbottMHR make Australia the laughing stock of the world, Need a compassionate approach".

Earlier in the day Mr Palmer released a statement criticisng the major political parties' "lack of compassion and common sense in wasting billions of tax payers' dollars on ineffective asylum seeker policies which only increased human misery".

He said  both Labor and the Coalition were pedalling "disgraceful" asylum seeker policies that would cost taxpayers upwards of $5 billion a year.

"That is a shocking waste of money which will do little to fix a very serious issue when the dollars could be much better spent on things such as health and education,'' Mr Palmer said.

"It is a national disgrace. The major parties' bungled responses to the asylum seeker issue have made us the laughing stock of the world.

"Now Labor is foreshadowing increased taxes on top of its disastrous changes to Fringe Benefits Tax on motor vehicles which will only reduce productivity and jobs, shrink our economy and result in less taxable revenue being collected.

"Australia needs a real change in government to stop this downward spiral and to inject some empathy and common sense into the asylum seeker issue."

Mr Palmer said his party believed offshore processing as favoured by both major parties increased the pain and suffering of genuine asylum seekers.

"In recent years we have seen hundreds of people perish at sea as a result of this insidious industry and the policies which perpetuate it … we have seen families separated and children locked up," Mr Palmer said.

"If we really want to smash the people smugglers business model we need to take away their customers.

"We say you can buy a plane ticket if you believe you're a legitimate refugee and you can come to Australia in normal transport at one tenth the cost,'' he said.

Mr Palmer said all asylum-seekers should be processed at the country's borders in a timely, compassionate and fair way


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