Media release tally reveals Labor, LNP criticise opponents

DESPITE the rhetoric of both Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott claiming they are running largely positive campaigns, a tally of media releases from each party headquarters reveals a different picture.

At the halfway mark of the Federal Election campaign yesterday, APN Newsdesk took a tally of more than 400 media statements distributed to the press since the campaign began.

That tally reveals on both the Labor and LNP sides of the debate, the arguments, as with most campaigns, centre on criticising their opponents.

A sample of nearly 200 releases sent out by Labor HQ reveals 82 statements focussed on criticising Tony Abbott or the Coalition on possible budget cuts, changes to the GST and other issues.

But the benefits of incumbency showed in Labor's media statements, revealing a high number of largely positive statements, with 145 "funding announcements" and 43 policy-centred statements.

The funding announcements focussed on existing government programs and grant announcements delayed until the election.

And Labor HQ's policy statements largely were similarly-worded media releases highlighting the benefits of policies such as Disability Care Australia and the National Broadband Network, to different regions.

In the Coalition camp, considerably fewer statements had been distributed to date, but again, many were negative.

A similar sample of nearly 200 releases from the Coalition included 75 statements criticising Mr Rudd and Labor, with about 30 others being funding promises or significant policy announcements.

The Coalition statements also included more than 40 media alerts and transcripts.

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