Communications Minister Paul Fletcher has blamed ABC management for cutting 250 jobs, despite the federal government placing an indexation freeze on its budget.
The national broadcaster last week announced it would dump its 7.45am news bulletin and scrap the ABC Life brand as part of a restructure in order to meet a $41 million per year budget shortfall.
It comes after a three-year funding freeze began last July, costing the organisation around $84 million.
Labor leader Anthony Albanese on Wednesday pledged to give the ABC that $83.7 million back if Labor won government.
But speaking in Yass on Wednesday morning, Mr Fletcher described Labor's claim as "nonsensical".
"In relation to what Mr Albanese has said, the point is Labor is not in government," Mr Fletcher said.
"It's very hard to understand what it actually means because he's saying if they were to come into government halfway through 2022 they would in some way be able to provide funding over a period from 2019 to mid 2022.
"That period would be almost over so it's essentially a nonsensical, non-meaningful promise."
Mr Fletcher said the ABC had stable and growing funding of $1 billion per year and it was up to the broadcaster to determine how that money was used.
"The ABC has operational, editorial and managerial independence. That is set out in the ABC's legislation," he said.
"The Commonwealth government provides the ABC with very substantial funding over $1 billion a year and just in the most recent budget we provided $43.7 million of additional funding for regional and local news gathering.
"I repeat there has been no cut in the ABC's budget. The ABC's budget is secure and is rising so the premise we are asking the ABC to do what it does with less is simply factually wrong."Communications Minister Paul Fletcher
"Now it is ABC board and management who are charged with how that funding is deployed, what services are provided, who's employed to provide those services.
"ABC board management are charged with how the ABC delivers on the ABC charter of providing broadcasting services to people all around Australia.
"I repeat there has been no cut in the ABC's budget. The ABC's budget is secure and is rising so the premise we are asking the ABC to do what it does with less is simply factually wrong."
The ABC was praised during the Black Summer bushfires for its emergency broadcasting services. Labor's candidate for Eden-Monaro Kristy McBain said on Wednesday the ABC "saved lives" during the crisis.
"We know when electricity and telecommunications went down that some people only had their radio," she said.