The Liberal Party is accusing Labor of pumping out negative messages in Eden-Monaro in a bid to hold the bellwether seat against a possible landslide victory for the Coalition.
However, Labor's Mike Kelly believes his grassroots work during his six-year term could be the key factor in having the electorate go against the national trend.
He increased his margin at the last election and has been given the Defence Materiel portfolio, along with the strong hint he would become defence minister if Kevin Rudd won the election.
Dr Kelly said Liberal candidate Peter Hendy had ''extreme right-wing views'' and cited a discussion paper about cuts to programs, published by a business lobby group when it was run by Mr Hendy.
The slanging match, just days before the election, erupted in the seat that has for decades been won by the incoming government.
Mr Hendy led the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and was a senior adviser to former Howard government minister Peter Reith. More recently he worked for deputy Liberal Party leader Julie Bishop.
Mr Hendy said Labor's use of the 2005 discussion paper about cuts to programs was an ''increasingly desperate tactic''.
''I am the underdog, but I think our campaign is on track,'' he said on Sunday.
''I'll be spending the last week in the election campaign doing a circuit of the electorate and seeing as many people as I can to convince them of the positive policies the Liberal Party has for Australia.
''As we're seeing with Mr Rudd who is basically running a negative campaign, they are running a highly negative campaign in Eden-Monaro and not offering, in our view, positive polices for the future.''
Dr Kelly said a Coalition government would put 17 projects planned for the electorate ''on the chopping block''.
The projects include upgrading the Queanbeyan showground, the Cooma CBD and the Moruya airport.
Nationals leader Warren Truss said a Coalition government would honour only contracts that had been signed.
''If not, then they are just a Labor Party election promise,'' Mr Truss told the National Press Club on Thursday.
Dr Kelly said the 2005 paper written by former Treasury deputy secretary Des Moore suggested abolishing the Veterans Affairs Department and reducing parenting payments, aged pensions, and family tax benefits.
''I believe Mr Abbott has handpicked Peter Hendy to be his candidate here precisely because of his right-wing economic views,'' Dr Kelly said.
Mr Hendy is quoted in The Sydney Morning Herald in May 2005 as saying: ''If you want to talk the talk on tax cuts, you have to walk the walk on expenditure cuts.''
Dr Kelly said it was time for Mr Hendy to ''come clean'' on the cuts a Coalition government would make.
The Australia Institute is warning that the ''best-case'' scenario of the Coalition's intentions to downsize the public service carries a high likelihood of pitching the national capital into recession with knock-on job losses felt throughout in the local economy.
Mr Hendy said the 2005 discussion paper about cuts to programs was explicitly the views of the author and was not endorsed by himself or ACCI.
''Mike Kelly first raised it at the Moruya debate, which I then slapped down, and then in subsequent debates he's got his party supporters to raise the issue.
''If Mike Kelly wants to use that logic, I will get out the Henry tax review, which recommends the introduction of a wealth tax and simply ask Mike Kelly why does he want a wealth tax imposed on people in Eden-Monaro,'' he said.
Dr Kelly said he might retain the key marginal seat.
''I believe the record I've made working with the community is something the community definitely gives me credit for,'' he said.
''I don't believe that people have settled fully in their minds how they've going to vote here or at the national level.''