Pauline Hanson wants to limit the amount of money the government can borrow by bringing back a debt ceiling.
The One Nation leader has introduced private legislation to parliament to set the debt cap at 35 per cent of gross domestic product, effectively reinstating the ceiling which was abandoned under former treasurer Joe Hockey.
"It is unfair and unconscionable for governments to borrow to pay for day-to-day spending and leave it to another generation to repay a debt for things they did not receive," Senator Hanson told the upper house on Monday.
It comes after the Young Liberals unsuccessfully tried to pass a motion at the party's federal council to reintroduce a debt ceiling.
Finance Minister Mathias Cormann spoke against the motion, arguing it would mean the government would be forced to negotiate spending with the crossbench.
Gross debt will be $561 billion in 2018/19, or 29.5 per cent of GDP, and is forecast to peak at $596 billion in 2025/26.
Senator Hanson said governments needed to be prudent during good times to position them to help the economy during the bad.
"Australia has never defaulted on its government debt but that is not the same as saying it can never happen," she said.
Australian Associated Press