The Barnett government's plans to sell ports, including the last capital city port slated for privatisation, appear to have been torpedoed by the WA Nationals' change of heart.
At the start of a frenetic year for independent Nick Xenophon, the South Australian senator says his new national political party, the Nick Xenophon Team, will fill a vacuum.
Federal cabinet's national security committee meets on Monday, as Malcolm Turnbull continues to resist pressure from the Liberal right to make Peter Dutton a permanent member of it.
University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor Stephen Parker and Professorial Fellow Michelle Grattan cast an eye over the fledgling political relationship between Malcolm Turnbull and his US counterpart.
One can only speculate how the discussion would have gone if Tony Abbott had survived as prime minister long enough to meet Barack Obama during this week's summit circuit.
Australian Strategic Policy Institute executive director Peter Jennings has strongly criticised the decision to lease the Port of Darwin to a Chinese company.