Leadership struggles are between ostensible allies.
In leadership contests in particular, the media’s role is often markedly different from the competition between parties.
What Tony Abbott himself claims as his government’s achievements are all reversals of previous policies.
So far, Tony Abbott has failed to position himself as anything more than an opposition leader who has been given power and is unsure what to do with it.
Few other world leaders are as enthusiastic as Tony Abbott in endorsing coal as ‘good for humanity’.
Australia's failure to lead on climate action marks a stark shift in political priorities in the past decade. The government is all about immediate economic returns whatever the long-term costs.
Our democratic ship of state is in bad shape.
Campaigns are now more focused on how to manipulate the electorate so you can govern as you see fit once you get power.
Opposition leader Bill Shorten has levelled with Tony Abbott as preferred prime minister, according to Newspoll.
The opposition has widened its two-party lead over the Coalition in Newspoll as MPs return for a new parliamentary session rocked by voters' anger over parliamentary entitlements.
The scandal surrounding Bronwyn Bishop’s entitlements may not have ended with her resignation as Speaker.
Combined, the nature of the controversy, Bishop’s behaviour as Speaker, and the way she and her party dealt with the issue created the perfect storm for a damaging scandal.
Why me? Bronwyn Bishop’s ‘Choppergate’ scandal has taken off for two reasons: it created an image in the public mind and it feeds into an underlying perception.
To last a long time, issues need to provide a vivid image. The image of a woman dressed up to the nines with a bouffant hairdo riding in a helicopter is a very vivid one.
Never before has Australia had a situation where the leaders of both major parties are so little liked.
Tony Abbott’s leadership ratings and his standing as preferred prime minister have improved, but only to the point where he is roughly at level pegging with Bill Shorten.
Bill Shorten’s support – and that of his party – is almost entirely a function of public perceptions of Tony Abbott’s performance.
Bill Shorten has neither built the profile nor provided the performance that renders him prime minister-in-waiting rather than fragile whinger-in-chief.
Tony Abbott risks having same-sex marriage used against him electorally – just as his Liberal Party once tried to use it against Labor.
As opposition leader Bill Shorten prepares to introduce an amendment on Monday to the Marriage Act to legalise same-sex marriage, why has Australia lagged so far behind?
In his first budget and in opposition, Joe Hockey’s single-minded focus was on cutting the budget debt and deficits. For his second budget he’s telling a different story.
Joe Hockey's first budget was a declaration of ideological belief. The second is about political survival and depends on breathing life back into the economy -- the ideological urgency can wait.
Power shift: Richard Di Natale’s elevation as the new Greens' leader, replacing Tasmanian Christine Milne, marks the rise of the Victorian Greens.
The balance of power in Australian green politics has shifted with the choice of Victorian Senator Richard Di Natale as Greens' leader – and the speed of the change is a lesson for other parties.
Since its 2010-13 ‘partnership’ with the Greens, any failure by Labor to mark its independence has been punished by the electorate.
A political party that isn’t sure what it stands for isn’t really a party.
The Abbott government is running out of time to try to come up with new ideas and refresh its reason for being.
When it comes to producing a comprehensive, far-reaching policy regime – a coherent vision for Australia’s society and economy and how to turn it into reality – the government is only getting started.
Australian and Canadian prime ministers Tony Abbott and Stephen Harper operate in political cultures where all-out warfare is now the norm.
In recent years, a political "state of nature" has replaced what had been the civilised practice of political life in Australia.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott confers with his chief of staff, Peta Credlin, during question time.
Peta Credlin is in the classic "double bind" of all women in power: if they take charge, they transgress the gendered expectations that "female qualities" are best suited to a supporting role.
Unlike early 20th-century prime minister Alfred Deakin, Tony Abbott has no language for reaching out to the Australian people.
Library of Congress
Alfred Deakin knew what he believed in; it helped him to believe in himself, and to survive three terms as prime minister.
The Abbott government’s expedited passage of national security laws in 2014 demonstrated an underlying disrespect for the legislative process.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott has made two key pledges in recent weeks – to begin “good government” and to no longer give “the benefit of doubt” to people suspected of planning terrorist activities in Australia…
Joe Hockey’s 2012 ‘age of entitlement’ speech was unusually candid, but as treasurer he has shied away from tackling the tax perks that burden the budget.
Whenever an Australian government runs into trouble we hear calls for a clearer narrative. The latest contribution comes in a thoughtful article from Waleed Aly. Aly points to the similar undermining of…
Tony Abbott is offering logical evidence and emotional appeals, but the rhetorical problem is his own loss of credibility and authority.
“Is it me?” That was the question John Howard reportedly asked his cabinet colleagues as his government remained stubbornly behind in the polls in 2007. One of those colleagues, Tony Abbott, now confronts…