Articles on Australian politics

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Penny Wong’s rare moment of sincerity on Q&A betrayed the paucity of Australia’s political commentary. ABC

Penny Wong, Joe Hockey and the dire state of political punditry

If there is a turning point in the Australian debate on same-sex marriage it may well be Penny Wong’s remarkable grace and honesty when answering Joe Hockey on last night’s Q&A. Wong was asked by host…
Swan may be appealing to a voting bloc that doesn’t exist. AAP/Alan Porritt

Labor’s populist turn unlikely to succeed

The 2012 budget came at a particularly challenging time for Labor. The government has sought to achieve two distinct (if related) political goals: bolster Labor’s “economic management” credentials and…
Wayne Swan’s responsibility to the citizens of Lilley may conflict with his role of treasurer. So why don’t we separate them? AAP/Alan Porritt

Treasurer or Member for Lilley? Perhaps Wayne Swan doesn’t have to be both

Australia is on the eve of receiving one of its most anticipated budget announcements. Wayne Swan and the team within the Treasury have put together a pillar from which the Labor Party will draw strength…
Another free and fair Australian election - this time the recent Queensland state election - gets underway. AAP/Dan Peled

The benefits of deliberation in the political process

Is there a role for deliberation about electoral rules? For many, the answer would be “no”. For them, the notion of principled discussion informed by careful reflection is deeply incongruous with the grubby…
The line between traditional and new media has now blurred into indistinguishability. flickr/francescominciotti

Convergence Review: tame cat Press Council gets playmate

It should be easy for the Gillard Government to accept the recommendations of the Convergence Review. On the surface it seems all very sensible: a converged Press Council and Australian Communications…
Clive Palmer should probably stick to what he’s good at. AAP Image/Dan Peled

Forget contesting Lilley, Clive Palmer should stick to his day job

Mining magnate Clive Palmer has put his name forward to run for the Liberal National Party (LNP) against Treasurer Wayne Swan in the Queensland seat of Lilley at the next election. Palmer has been a vocal…
Rudd’s commitment to Australia’s bid for a UN security council seat must continue under Bob Carr. EPA/Jason Szenes

Australia shouldn’t give up on a UN security council seat

Now we have a new foreign minister, some have suggested it’s time for Australia to give up its bid for a permanent seat on the UN Security Council. During his time as prime minister and foreign minister…
Accusations against Peter Slipper have prompted him to step aside as speaker. AAP Image/Penny Bradfield

Slipper saga begs the question – do we need a speaker at all?

Speaker of the House of Representatives Peter Slipper has stepped aside following allegations of sexual harassment and the misuse of cab-charge vouchers. Slipper’s former adviser James Ashby accused the…
Australian troops work with Afghan National Army forces in Uruzgan province in August 2011.

Mission accomplished? Australia withdraws from Afghanistan early

Prime minister Julia Gillard today announced the revised timetable for the withdrawal of Australian troops from Afghanistan. Within 12 to 18 months the majority of Australian military forces will leave…
Former prime ministers Gordon Brown and Kevin Rudd before the 2009 G20 summit.

Kissing cousins: what the ALP can learn from UK Labour

What are political parties for? Do they exist only to win elections or are they for the benefit of members with process as important as outcome? These are the fundamental questions that former British…
All eyes are now on Christine Milne to see if she is up to filling the void left by former leader Bob Brown. AAP Image/Lukas Coch

Greens’ future is bright under Christine Milne

Bob Brown’s decision to resign as leader of the Greens last Friday marks a new and interesting phase in the evolution and development of the Australian Greens. Brown’s exit from the Senate in June inevitably…
New Greens leader Christine Milne should learn from Bob Brown’s charismatic leadership. AAP/Alan Porritt

Portrait of a charismatic leader: putting Bob Brown in context

Australia has a long record of charismatic political leaders and Bob Brown is perhaps the most notable recent example, but unlike other leaders of this style he has demonstrated remarkable political skill…
Bob Brown announces his resignation from politics at a press conference in Canberra. AAP/Lukas Coch

Bob Brown’s resignation: experts respond

Senator Bob Brown today resigned as leader of the Australian Greens. He will vacate his Senate seat in June. Former deputy…
Bob Brown’s resignation seemed to even surprise members of his own party. ABC News24

Bob Brown resigns: what next for the Greens?

In a surprise move, Senator Bob Brown has resigned as leader of the Australian Greens and has been replaced by his former deputy Christine Milne. Brown will step down from his Senate seat in June. He has…
Gillard may encounter some tough talk from Coalition MPs at today’s COAG meeting. AAP Image/Lukas Coch

COAG could hurt the Gillard Government

The Coalition state premiers going to the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting today smell blood. The Gillard government is in a weak position with constant leadership speculation, the Craig…

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