Australian PM: Economy key to re-election bid

19:06, August 03, 2010      

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Australia's Prime Minister Julia Gillard visits a centre for multiple sclerosis while campaigning in Melbourne July 29, 2010. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard said on Tuesday the economy will be the centerpiece of Labor's re-election bid.

Gillard used the Reserve Bank of Australia's decision to leave interest rates on hold as another opportunity to call for a televised debate with Opposition Leader Tony Abbott, reversing her earlier aversion to a second contest.

The prime minister and her deputy, Treasurer Wayne Swan, made a joint campaign appearance to indicate the government would make economic management the core focus of its campaign from now until election day on August 21.

Asked if it had been a mistake to leave the message of the economic message until day 17 of the 35-day campaign, Gillard said, "Whilst I don't disagree with your question, I'm going to disagree with you," she told reporters.

Later on Tuesday, Gillard appeared in the safe Labor seat of Newcastle to reiterate her message.

"Economic management is the center of this election campaign," she said.

Source: Xinhua


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