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Bill Shorten

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The Labor Party that Bill Shorten leads is much more professionalised in its MP make-up than its earlier incarnations. AAP/Tracey Nearmy

Class warfare: would Shorten pass the test that Ed Miliband failed?

For British Labour leader Ed Miliband, defeat was yet again snatched from the jaws of victory. With the UK general election less than six months away, the recent Rochester and Strood by-election was a…
Jenny Macklin emphasises that the pursuit of inclusive growth also requires a set of economic policies that recognise the importance of human capital. AAP/Lukas Coch

Labor needs new narrative, Macklin says

Opposition frontbencher Jenny Macklin says Labor should frame its policies around delivering “inclusive growth” and needs…
The problem confronting Labor and federal leader Bill Shorten is not so much the ties with unions as the centralisation of power in the party and a handful of affiliated unions. AAP/Lukas Coch

Labor will be making a mistake if it simply divorces the unions

Proposed reforms in the Australian Labor Party aim to give members a greater voice in party governance and policy development. This is driven by the need to reverse the party’s shrinking support base after…
Opposition leader Bill Shorten has found himself in a better than expected electoral position a year into his leadership. AAP/Lukas Coch

Grattan on Friday: In Conversation with Bill Shorten

Bill Shorten will have been a year in his job next month. After its trouncing at the election, Labor is in a much better position than many would have expected, leading on a two party basis in the polls…
Bill Shorten needs to define a positive story for Labor that goes beyond the constant whining about the government’s broken promises. AAP/Alan Porritt

As the party faithful drift away, can Bill Shorten reinvent Labor?

Bill Shorten, who seemed so impressive as a union leader and minister, is shaping up as the least inspiring opposition leader since Alexander Downer. In foreign affairs, Shorten’s fear of repeating Mark…

VIDEO: Michelle Grattan on Bill Shorten

University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor Stephen Parker and Professorial Fellow Michelle Grattan discuss the week in politics including Bill Shorten’s identification of himself in a rape allegation, what…
Opposition leader Bill Shorten described the rape allegation as abhorrent. AAP/Paul Miller

Shorten outs himself as Labor figure in rape investigation

Opposition leader Bill Shorten has identified himself as the senior Labor figure investigated by Victoria Police after an allegation he had raped a young woman in the 1980s. In a claim made last October…
It seems things are not yet bad enough in the Labor Party to make significant reform, such as John Faulkner’s proposed changes to preselection, likely. AAP/Daniel Munoz

Faulkner’s reforms will fail as NSW Labor refuses to change

Labor senator John Faulkner does not anticipate that his moves to reform the party’s preselection processes will succeed at this weekend’s NSW State Conference. Faulkner is hoping to have the rules changed…
Joe Hockey’s budget speech forgot the age-old rules of rhetoric, which he needed to observe if he wanted to control ‘the narrative’. Lukas Coch/AAP

In government, a mantra is not enough to control the narrative

The annual federal budget speech is the one required speech of the Australian political calendar. And it goes all the way back to Federation. It’s Australia’s equivalent of the State of the Union address…
Opposition leader Bill Shorten attacked the government’s budget as ‘ideological’, but his own vision in the battle of ideas is far less clear. AAP/Alan Porritt

Shorten’s budget in reply: will it reshape voters' memories?

Opposition leader Bill Shorten was emphatic in his budget in reply that the Abbott government’s first budget was an “attack” on the Australian way of life. In his speech on the floor of parliament last…
Opposition leader Bill Shorten delivered his first budget in reply speech on the floor of parliament tonight. AAP/Alan Porritt

Bill Shorten’s budget reply: experts react

Opposition leader Bill Shorten has vowed to oppose funding cuts to hospitals, schools and higher education in his budget in reply speech, threatening more than A$10 billion in budget savings proposed by…
In the lead-up to the budget, Labor and its leader Bill Shorten seem strangely absent from debates about the purpose of government. AAP/Paul Miller

Shorten, Abbott and the trap of being a negative opposition

Bill Shorten has clearly taken Tony Abbott as his role model as opposition leader. Shorten’s refrain of “broken promises” and “no more taxes” has an eerie ring of familiarity to it, and risks turning the…
Bill Shorten’s objective of an ‘inclusive’ Labor Party is hard to argue against in theory, but achieving it in practice is likely to prove fraught. AAP/Julian Smith

Shorten, the unions and the challenge of Labor Party reform

Federal Labor leader Bill Shorten has outlined his vision for a rejuvenated Labor Party. His speech earlier this week was a call to arms for the reform of federal Labor’s organisational rules. While Shorten’s…
The Australian Labor Party is constantly faced with an expectation to be true to traditional ‘Labor values’ but to then adapt them to a changing Australia. AAP/Daniel Munoz

Identity crisis: who does the Australian Labor Party represent?

In the wake of the ALP’s poor result in the recent Western Australia Senate election, The Conversation is publishing a series of articles looking at the party’s brand, organisation and future prospects…

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