Senator Brown did not launch any new policies but reiterated Greens support in several areas such as:
- legalising gay marriage
- better treatment of asylum seekers
- no nuclear waste dumps
- a national recycling program
- junk food advertising bans
- parliamentary debate on Australia’s Afghanistan troop commitment
The Greens have also called for a national food security plan, a dental scheme and high-speed rail for the east coast.
Senator Brown singled out The Greens’ backing of the $42 billion stimulus package as a significant achievement in the last term of Government.
“We put that package through, saving hundreds of thousands of jobs and thousands of businesses from recession,” he said.
Yesterday’s Nielsen poll put support for The Greens at 12 per cent and it is expected The Greens will gain the balance of power in the Senate in its own right at the next election.
The poll also put the Coalition in an election-winning lead and Senator Brown warned that a Coalition government would only offer deadlock or dominance.
“We will never just say no,” he said.
“We Greens have a plan and a vision which is not stuck, which is clear about the future of this country.”
Senator Brown also took a swipe at Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s oft-repeated election slogan of “Moving Forward”.
“If you’re going to move forward you have to say where you’re going,” he said.
Senator Brown used his speech to say coal companies should have to pay for the cost of extra port and rail facilities to export the resource.
He says the Greens are the only party in favour of a carbon tax.
“Both the big parties want to fund rail lines and port facilities in Queensland and New South Wales to hurry more coal from these big corporations – 75 per cent owned outside Australia – to hurry it to world markets, to be burnt to worsen climate change which threatens all of us.
“Here are The Greens – let them fund that themselves after we’ve imposed a carbon tax.”