Jim Chalmers says two-thirds of the debt in the budget was borrowed before the start of the pandemic. Is he correct? – ABC News

jim chalmers's claim is correct

The claim Both the Coalition and Labor have in the past argued that paying off Commonwealth debt is a benchmark of economic success in Australian politics. But Treasurer Josh Frydenberg recently warned Australians that his July budget update was going to contain “eye watering numbers around debt and deficit”, saying: “The coronavirus has required the Government to spend unprecedented amounts of money to support people in need”. The following day, in an interview with ABC News Breakfast, shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers said the Government must not be allowed to “pull a swiftie” by pretending the red ink in the budget was a consequence of the virus when the vast majority of the debt had piled up beforehand.

Jim Chalmers says two-thirds of the debt in the budget was borrowed before the start of the pandemic. Is he correct? – ABC News

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