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Now that the Labor leadership issue has been resolved once and for all, the attention will soon turn to the opposition’s attempts to win government at the election. AAP/Alan Porritt

Back to the opposition: bring on the policies

With such unprecedented turmoil inside the Labor Party over leadership it is not surprising that we have all forgotten about the opposition. You know, the government-in-waiting, the other mob, the Coalition…
Now that he’s deposed Julia Gillard, what lies ahead for Kevin Rudd in the election campaign? Alan Porritt / AAP

Rudd brings Labor disaster relief, hopes of better

The federal Labor caucus has decided to put aside its disdain for former leader Kevin Rudd and return him to the Labor leadership. The reason for this is simple: with Julia Gillard as leader, Labor was…
Kevin Rudd is once again the Prime Minister of Australia. AAP/Alan Porritt

Rudd wins the game of thrones

Labor has finally made the decision it ought to have taken long ago, but the counter-revolution has been extremely bloody and there are bodies all over the place. Not only is there a new Prime Minister…
Kevin Rudd has returned as leader of the ALP three years and three days after he was deposed by Julia Gillard. AAP/Alan Porritt

Kevin Rudd defeats Julia Gillard: expert reaction

Kevin Rudd has completed one the great political comebacks in Australian history by reclaiming the prime ministership from Julia Gillard in a party room vote in Canberra tonight, 57 votes to 45. Earlier…
Now that the curtain has come down on Julia Gillard’s prime ministership, it should be asked: was she truly a female prime minister or a prime minister who was female? AAP/Alan Porritt

Was Julia Gillard a ‘real’ female prime minister, or a leader who was female?

By the time the sun set over Parliament House, and took Julia Gillard’s prime ministership with it in a party room vote, the dissection of her legacy as Australia’s first female prime minister had already…
Kevin Rudd returns to be Prime Minister, but where did the Gillard government go wrong? Lukas Coch / AAP

Rudd returns, but where did it go so wrong for Gillard?

Kevin Rudd has made a Lazarus-like return to the prime ministership after winning a party room ballot this evening by a vote of 57-45. Rudd, who led the party to success at the 2007 election, replaces…
Buying power doesn’t always stack up as the best measurement for who we are and how far we’ve come. Shutterstock/ MaleWitch

More pie in the sky - economic progress no slice of life

In the verbal volley between Gillard and Abbott, Swan and Hockey, there is a conversation that we are not hearing. It bubbles below the consciousness of mainstream Australia, a conversation that is old…
Will history judge Julia Gillard favourably on her legislative record as prime minister? AAP/Alan Porritt

Will history remember Gillard’s three years favourably?

Julia Gillard has been a reasonably effective politician, but the political paradigm within which she has worked is approaching the end of its life. She has been aware of this but has struggled to develop…
In the three years since she took office, has Julia Gillard been able to reconcile her gender and position as prime minister? AAP/Mick Tsikas

Is Australia still not ready for a female prime minister?

On June 24, 2010, Australia’s first female prime minister, Julia Gillard, was sworn into office by Australia’s first female governor-general, Quentin Bryce. The iconic photographs of that day spoke of…
If Kevin Rudd replaces Julia Gillard as Labor leader next week, constitutional conventions dictate that he may not necessarily become prime minister again. AAP/Julian Smith

An end to the Rudd-Gillard battle?

If some reports are to be believed, Kevin Rudd will replace Julia Gillard as leader of the ALP and become prime minister again by the end of next week. This raises questions about the political and constitutional…
The impending disaster for Julia Gillard’s government at the federal election could also spell trouble for the hopes of the Greens in the Senate. AAP/Alan Porritt

Labor’s unpopularity could be a disaster for the Greens in the Senate too

The publicly available opinion polls are in agreement about the fate of the Labor government. A landslide defeat in the House of Representatives is looming, the magnitude of which might place Julia Gillard…
Despite criticisms that Julia Gillard has overplayed the gender card, the policies of her government have put in place a framework for true gender equality in the workplace. AAP/Alan Porritt

Gender equality at work: the Labor legacy

I was recently phoned by a journalist and asked to reflect on what the Labor government had done for gender equality. I started to jot down a number of reforms on the back of an envelope and surprised…
How central should Julia Gillard’s identity as a woman be in political discourse? AAP/Lukas Coch

Gillard, identity and the limits of political discourse

Politics and identity have collided with unusual force in Australian politics over the past year, reaching a crescendo in the last week. Beginning with Julia Gillard’s “misogyny speech” to parliament…
The sexism surrounding Australia’s first female prime minister Julia Gillard is nothing new for women in power: Britain’s first female PM Margaret Thatcher suffered similar. AAP/Tony McDonough

The gender wars: Thatcher and Gillard as ‘women’

The denigration of the first female Australian prime minister on the basis of her gender echoes that endured by the first female prime minister of Great Britain. While Julia Gillard has suffered the juvenile…
Kevin Rudd’s campaigning today will be a reminder to the caucus of his popularity among people. AAP/Dave Hunt

Grattan on Friday: caucus members are sitting on a powder keg

Kevin Rudd will hit western Sydney today to do some high profile campaigning. For Labor, he would say. For the leadership, others would note. Rudd will be mobbed. He’ll visit schools in the electorates…
In recent days, prime minister Julia Gillard has been accused of overplaying the ‘gender card’. AAP/Tony McDonough

Gillard and gender: has she been vindicated?

In a room full of feminists, there was hardly a sympathetic word in the room for prime minister Julia Gillard on Tuesday night. Earlier that day, the prime minister had launched Women for Gillard with…
A controversial menu from a Liberal Party fundraiser that the restaurant owner says was not distributed to attendees. Twitter

Dining out on the prime minister – time to change the ‘Menugate’?

In 2003, festooned on the sides of buildings and train stations and overpasses around Melbourne was a series of advertisements for Heaven ice creams. Each billboard boasted variants of the very same image…
If Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott continue to lead their parties at the upcoming federal election, we should see a focus on policy, not personality politics. AAP/Alan Porritt

Rudd, Gillard or Abbott … do leaders really matter in Australian election campaigns?

Leadership speculation grips Canberra again. With opinion polls pointing to a landslide Coalition victory in September, there are reports that Labor MPs may look to oust prime minister Julia Gillard in…
Has the Gillard government fully thought through its referendum on recognition for local government? AAP/Lukas Coch

Referendum chaos - do ministers really know what they are proposing?

I am not Nostradamus, but I am prepared to make a confident prediction. If the proposed constitutional amendment to recognise local government, in the form announced by press release last week, were to…

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