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According to this article written by Judith Ireland and published by the Sydney Morning Herald on 8 December 2014, Coalition MPs have welcomed Prime Minister Tony Abbott's move to water down his unpopular paid parental leave scheme, but have warned that he should not ignore support for stay-at-home mothers in the process.

Ireland says that Mr Abbott will spend the summer holidays revamping his signature policy, but faces a tough task with divergent backbench views about how he should approach it. Some MPs are keen to see him pay down national debt with PPL savings, rather than boost funds to childcare. On Sunday the Prime Minister announced he would divert funds away from paid parental leave towards childcare. Mr Abbott did not give any specific details of his plans, but said the scheme would be "better targeted", in a sign wealthier mums could no longer be eligible. He also stressed that the policy would still be based on "a woman's real wage" and include superannuation.

Confused Coalition MPs contacted each other on Sunday, trying to work out what the announcement meant. Mr Abbott's revamp plan comes after sustained and widespread criticism of his existing $5.5 billion policy that would have replaced a new mother's income for 26 weeks, with superannuation, up to a cap of $50,000.

Those within the government have argued the scheme is too expensive and others, such as the Productivity Commission have suggested that the money would be better spend on early childhood education. The Coalition has also been unable to secure Senate support for the scheme, with opposition from Labor, the Greens, Palmer United and other crossbenchers.

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