Australian Politics


Dead Duck to drag PPL into the grave

By Leith van Onselen Another casualty from the Queensland election debacle appears to be Tony Abbott’s signature paid parental leave (PPL) scheme, which according to Assistant Treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, will be dumped by Mr Abbott at today’s speech to the National Press Club: [PPL] will be replaced with a revamped families package. “There will be


How to save the Coalition

By Leith van Onselen With the Victorian and Queensland Coalition Governments obliterated, and Tony Abbott facing an imminent leadership challenge, the odds that the Federal Government will become one terms wonders are increasing by the day. As argued by The Guardian’s Lenore Taylor over the weekend: [Tony Abbott]…has squandered the electorate’s trust, with broken promises


Stuck with Dead Duck another six months

From the AFR: Tony Abbott has until the second half of this year to turn around the government’s fortunes or risk losing his job, his colleagues say. Under a contingency plan being actively discussed within senior ranks of the Coalition, ministers and ­backbenchers are willing Mr Abbott to succeed. If not he faces being replaced, possibly


QLD revolution to behead Comrade Campbell?

From Crikey’s Pollbludger: With just two days to go to the election, Queensland politics appears to be headed into uncharted waters, with Premier Campbell Newman’s grand gamble on his precarious inner-north Brisbane seat of Ashgrove looking increasingly like a busted flush. If a poll conducted the night before last by ReachTEL for the Seven Network


Lib condemns “latte-sipping, keyboard warriors”

I guess that means me and you lot. At least they’re reading you. Though, for future reference, I hate coffee. The same genius, NSW Nationals MP Michael McCormack, reckons that Dead Duck “should visit a country pub to get an “honest appraisal” of how the government can improve.” I’m not sure he’d come out again. Every die-hard Lib that


Liberals rally to Credlin

From The Australian: SENIOR Liberals are publicly vowing support for Tony Abbott’s chief-of-staff, Peta Credlin, cautioning the government’s supporters against further “extravagant” and “unhelpful” accusations against the top aide. The Ministers for Finance, Health, Education and Immigration have all rejected suggestions that Ms Credlin resign as a sacrificial offering to atone for political misjudgments emanating


Polls quack for Dead Duck Tony

A couple of polls late yesterday painted a bleak picture for Dead Duck Tony: And from Roy Morgan: ALP support rose to 56.5% (up 2%) on Australia Day weekend, well ahead of the L-NP 43.5% (down 2%) on a two-party preferred basis.  If a Federal Election were held now the ALP would win easily according


Abbott installs knighthoods filter on self

From The Australian: A REPENTANT Tony Abbott has conceded he derailed Campbell Newman’s re-election campaign by appointing Prince Philip a knight of Australia, vowing “considerably more consultation” on future appointments. …Mr Abbott said he took the decision after consulting with Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove and Order of Australia Council chairman Sir Angus Houston. “I stand


Unelectable turns unsustainable

Just last week I forecast that Tony Abbott would hang on this year. That was before the baffling decision to deliver Prince Phillip a knighthood, which appears to have crystallized global Abbott ridicule. The Left press at the Fairfax dailies and the Right press at The Oz are now hammering our adrift PM with equal ferocity. Even


QLD Left attacks Comrade Campbell’s coal quango

You know when your plodding through the ideological labyrinth that is Australian politics when this happens to the massive Abbot Point coal project: The government has offered funds to help build shared-use infrastructure, such as a rail line or airport, from its asset privatisation and lease plan. The LNP is yet to put a figure on how much it is


The true state of Queensland’s economy

Cross posted from The Conversation by Fabrizio Carmignani, Professor, Griffith Business School at Griffith University Judging from the first week of campaigning, the 2015 Queensland election is going to be very much about economics – and jobs in particular. On the one hand, Premier Campbell Newman and his Liberal National Party stress that under their “strong


The high priestess of Abbott failure

Cross-posted from The Conversation Julie Bishop and Peta Credlin had one significant parallel experience on the way to government. They both survived three Liberal leaders. Bishop was deputy to Brendan Nelson, Malcolm Turnbull and Tony Abbott. Credlin was chief of staff or deputy (Turnbull demoted her) in the offices of all three. The women each have


Business turns on Abbott Government

By Leith van Onselen The Abbott Government’s “open for business” mantra is falling on deaf ears amongst Australian businesses. Last month, The AFR revealed that the Coalition’s rating had taken a dive amongst company directors, with nearly half of the 500 company directors surveyed assessing the Coalition’s performance in its first year in office as


Tony Abbott is not Prime Minister material

From Essential via Crikey: Approval of Tony Abbott’s performance has plunged to its lowest level as Prime Minister and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has again opened up a lead as preferred Prime Minister, today’s Essential Report reveals, as the government ends the year in chaos and recrimination. The Prime Minister’s approval with voters has slumped


Abbott: Hockey to be treasurer forever

From one struggling pollie to another: TONY Abbott has voiced “absolute” confidence in his embattled Treasurer and Defence Minister, as Joe Hockey conceded his cabinet colleagues don’t like being told to “live within their means”. Amid rising speculation about the performance of some ministers, Mr Abbott last night admitted he would reshuffle his front bench


A nation desperate for economic truth

Some sense today from Adam Creighton and David Uren: AUSTRALIANS are enduring a deep-seated pessimism from a loss of confidence in social and economic institutions at the same time as growing fears of joblessness undermine the government’s economic sales pitch. As the government embarks on a campaign to boost confidence ahead of Christmas, both economic and


Abbott approval crashes into witch’s ditch

Prime Minister Abbott is taking a hammering in the polls. From The Australian: TONY Abbott’s approval rating has dropped to a five-month low and Labor continues to hold a substantial two-party-preferred lead over the Coalition, despite the Prime Minister yesterday insisting this year had been one of “very considerable achievement” by his government. The latest


One term Tony loses his first state

Let’s face it, Tony Abbott not Dennis Napthine was just voted out after one term in Victoria. The question that really matters is why? Phillip Coorey of the AFR had a nice piece on the weekend offer: As the political year draws to a close, Liberals are not panicking but they are scratching their heads


Abbott popularity surges among Indian youth

If only they voted, from the UK Telegraph: Australia’s prime minister, has denied claims he bought “likes” on Facebook after it emerged that his biggest supporters are 18 to 34 year olds from New Delhi. Tony Abbott, whose approval ratings in Australia are low, said the surge was due to a recent visit to Australia


Why is mining so unpopular?

From her newsletter: Gina Rinehart has attacked the “negativity” she says the mining industry is regarded with, considering Australia couldn’t “survive” without it. “For an industry that delivers so much, wouldn’t you think there would be just a little more understanding and less negativity for what mining contributes to our country?”, Rinehart said in a


Lambie grenade blows up FOFA changes

From the AFR: The federal government’s changes to Labor’s future of financial advice laws are about to be unravelled. Renegade Palmer United Party Senator Jacqui Lambie and Australian Motoring Enthusiasts Party Senator Ricky Muir have broken ranks with Clive Palmer and will join Labor, the Greens and other Senate crossbenchers to disallow the laws. The


Witch’s ditch opens under Abbott ineptitude

From The Australian: At 39 per cent, Labor’s primary support is higher than the government’s for the first time since July…In two-party-preferred terms, based on preference flows from last year’s election, Labor leads by 55 per cent to 45 per cent. Mr Abbott recorded the third successive dip in his satisfaction rating, which fell one