WOULD-BE prime minister Tony Abbott has ruled out a return to unfair Work Choices legislation in workplaces.
He told a people's forum in Brisbane that he was one of two cabinet ministers who opposed the legislation when it was introduced.
He quoted the saying "that particular policy is dead, buried and cremated".
"It is never going to happen," he said.
"We learnt our lesson.
"We lost an election on it."
Galaxy Poll chose 100 undecided voters to ask Mr Abbott and Prime Minister Kevin Rudd questions at the Broncos League Club in Red Hill.
Mr Abbott narrowly won the debate 37 to 35 but there were still 33 undecided voters.
Who do you think won the election debate?
This poll ended on 28 August 2013.
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
Mr Rudd, who won the coin toss, opened by telling the audience he was "in the building business" - building Australia's future.
He pointed to new industries, education, health and the national broadband network to ensure future economic opportunities.
Mr Rudd said the latter would be as important for the 21st century as electricity and the phone were for the 20th century.
Mr Abbott told the crowd he wanted to be known as an infrastructure prime minister if he elected, "building roads for the 21st century".
He said he wanted to get the budget back under control, stop the boats and cut the carbon tax to improve cost of living.
Audience member Gabrielle, in her question to the pair, suggested business handouts were immoral and bad economics.
But Mr Rudd defended sectorial support to industries with strategic importance to the country.
He said Australia one of 12 or 13 countries in world which could take automobile designs through production to completion.
Mr Rudd said 50,000 jobs depended directly on the car industry and 200,000 jobs depended indirectly.
Mr Abbott said he agreed in making exceptions for key industries but did not believe in the extra $500 million the government had kicked in for the car industry.
He said he had just visited the Volvo truck factory at Wacol and it had survived for 40-odd years without subsidy.
"If Volvo can do it for trucks, why can't we do it for cars," he said.