POLITICS

Shorten Backs Parliament Shakeup: 'The Nation Needs Four-Year Terms'

Labor wants fixed four-year terms for MPs.

23/07/2017 10:29 AM AEST | Updated 23/07/2017 12:44 PM AEST

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has called on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to back his call for fixed four-year parliamentary terms.

The Opposition Leader wants to increase the time elected MPs stay in office, saying he is in favour of extending House of Representatives terms to four years. Those in the Senate would remain for eight.

"I think that it is not about Labor or Liberal, I think it's about the nation. I think that the nation needs four-year terms," Shorten told ABC television.

"Governments can be more daring and more determined if they're not constantly thinking about the next election ... What this country needs is long-term policy making."

Most states already have fixed terms in place, while the Commonwealth has unfixed three-year terms.

Shorten has previously said that he's a supporter of fixed 4-year terms, and the Labor Party platform also says quite explicitly that the party backs them as well.

The change to the current system would need to be passed by a referendum.

Shorten's comments come after he this week pledged to get tough on inequality in Australia, including a clampdown on tax lurks for wealthy Aussies.

"We have a two class tax system," he told Channel Seven on Saturday.

"For most Australians ... they've probably already done this year's tax return. They can claim a couple of vanilla deductions, maybe if they are fortunate salary sacrifice a motor vehicle, some work deductions."

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