View from The Hill

View from The Hill

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George Brandis’s fundamental mistake was the formal direction, which he should have anticipated would be provocative and challenged in legal circles. Lukas Coch/AAP

Brandis mishandles a fight he should never have had

The dramatic break between the Attorney-General and the Solicitor-General – which culminated spectacularly in Justin Gleeson’s resignation on Monday – was a saga of misjudgments and mismanagement. It has…
Malcolm Turnbull was still trying to gain control of the gun issue in Question Time. Lukas Coch/AAP

Turnbull walks right into Shorten’s gun-sight

The government has a new buzzword. In the partyroom on Tuesday Malcolm Turnbull and Barnaby Joyce urged the troops to make the Coalition’s policies “tactile”. In less-fancy terminology, what they mean…
Commonwealth Bank CEO Ian Narev speaks to the House of Representatives standing committee on economics. Lukas Coch/AAP

Bank inquiry won’t take royal commission off the political agenda

The initial day of the parliamentary interrogation of the big banks’ chiefs has probably only strengthened the hand of those urging a royal commission. Malcolm Turnbull proposed bank executives should…
Malcolm Turnbull said what happened in South Australia should be a ‘wake-up call’. Scott Gelston/AAP

Turnbull turns South Australia crisis into row over renewables

Maybe it was because he was in Tasmania and somewhat out of things. Or perhaps he was so intent on the political point he was about to make that he didn’t think the situation through. For whatever reason…
Nothing was achieved in a Monday meeting between the government and Labor on the same-sex marriage plebiscite. Dan Peled/AAP

Same-sex marriage plebiscite manoeuvring has become a charade

We have reached the point of absurdity. Neither the government nor Labor can or wants to compromise on the same-sex marriage plebiscite. Yet they continue the charade. Nothing was achieved by or at Monday’s…
Malcolm Turnbull addresses a high-level refugee meeting at the United Nations headquarters in New York. Jason Szenes/EPA

Resettlement is the test for Malcolm Turnbull on refugees

Malcolm Turnbull’s various New York comments about border control and refugee policies have been heavy on self-congratulation of Australia. The biggest missing element has been any announcement of a solution…
As the Nationals’ chief whip, George Christensen has a central role in keeping the party in line. Mick Tsikas/AAP

Barnaby Joyce’s challenge: applying the whip to the Nationals’ whip

Bizarre as it might seem, George Christensen, the rebel MP who threatened to cross the floor unless the government changed the superannuation package, is the Nationals’ chief whip. After the election Nationals…