Joe Hockey ready to play hardball over budget

TREASURER Joe Hockey has escalated the fight over his first budget, warning the Senate he will look at ways to bypass it in the search for savings.

After the Senate blocked both the mining tax and the government's much-vaunted asset recycling program, Mr Hockey said he was prepared to attach some budget measures to appropriation bills.

He told ABC Radio on Wednesday that if the Labor Party wanted to block the budget measures, they would "have to block appropriations".

While Mr Hockey said he wanted to work with the Senate, pressure is increasing on the government to either negotiate with the crossbench or reveal a new "mini-budget".

Blocking the budget appropriations, or "supply" as it is often called, could trigger a wider fight and threaten the on-going operations of government.

His comments have confirmed the government is prepared to circumvent the Senate if it does not agree with measures including the GP co-payment and other budget cuts.

Mr Hockey also said that in opposing the budget measures two weeks ago, both Labor and The Greens had "dealt themselves out" of potential talks.

But he has said the government is prepared to negotiate with other Senate crossbenchers, despite criticism of many individual measures by most of the crossbench in recent weeks.

Topics:  budget gp co-payment joe hockey senate

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Snitz sizzles to win qualifier with ease

IN FULL FLIGHT: Brisbane jockey Robbie Fradd streaks clear to win the $150,000 NRRA Country Championships qualifier on board Snitz, trained by Matt Dunn, at Clarence River Jockey Club.

SHORT priced favourite sends everybody home happy.

Ballina Players brings popular military drama to the stage

ON STAGE: John Rado as Colonel Nathan Jessep and Dylan Wheeler as Lt Daniel Kaffee in the Ballina Players production of A Few Good Men.

Tickets are on sale for their new production of A Few Good Men

Triumph of dreams ... it all started with one bike

A CLASSIC: Meerschaum Vale's Col McAndrew with his Triumph 1956 Speed Twin which he will show at the Northern Rivers Classic Motorcycle Club's Show and Shine at Alstonville Plaza on March 18.

Col has six classic bikes; 100 expected at show

Local Partners