Articles on Julia Gillard

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2013 saw a decisive change of government in Australia. What else happened? AAP/Lisa Maree Williams

2013, the year that was: Politics + Society

Three prime ministers, four Labor Party leaders, two popes. 2013 was nothing if not a hectic year for the Politics + Society desk at The Conversation. And while it’s repeated so often as to go beyond being…
Governments in Australia appear to be voted out when they veer to far to the political Left or Right. Are we just a nation of centrists? AAP/Alan Porritt

Take a walk on the mild side: the attractions of the political centre

Ongoing reflections on the fall of the Rudd/Gillard Labor governments continue to feature suggestions about the impact of policy shifts to the Left, especially under Gillard (possibly influenced by her…
Kevin Rudd leaves parliament with his future as uncertain as his legacy. AAP/Daniel Munoz

The Rudd legacy: we need to talk about Kevin … or do we?

Should we care about Kevin Rudd’s legacy? Will anyone care? Australian political historians gaze with envy at the United States, where past presidents are revered and books about the “founding fathers…
There is no better example of the debasement of Australian political discourse and process than that which has surrounded action on climate change. AAP/Alan Porritt

A values deficit, toxic politics, and the climate change debacle

We live in an age of unprecedented prosperity, in which the major influences have been secularism, materialism, utilitarianism, urbanisation, remoteness from nature, institutional failure (especially in…
Bill Shorten is reportedly reconsidering the Labor Party’s position on the question of a carbon tax, the latest chapter in Labor’s long history with climate change policy. AAP/Alan Porritt

From Hawke to Shorten: the ALP’s vexed history with the carbon tax

As the new leader of the Labor opposition, Bill Shorten has a number of issues to deal with that have been left over from the previous three years of Labor government. Working out Labor’s climate change…
Julia Gillard has returned to the public spotlight just months after she was deposed as prime minister, and will likely remain front-and-centre in public life. AAP/Dan Himbrechts

Life after the prime ministership: a trek through history

Former prime minister Julia Gillard has returned to the spotlight after maintaining a dignified silence since her removal as Labor leader in June. Since the defeat of the federal Labor government, she…
ALP powerbroker Paul Howes has called on the party to enforce a binding vote to support same-sex marriage. But where does it fit in with the narrative of gay rights in Australia? AAP/Dave Hunt

Questions of conscience? The ALP, gay rights and same-sex marriage

Suddenly, it seems the Right faction of the Australian Labor Party has embraced gay causes - or as we now say, LGBTI ones. On the campaign trail for the party leadership, Bill Shorten floated the idea…
Six years of Labor government is now over. How will they be remembered? AAP/Dan Peled

Labor’s legacy: six years of … what exactly?

Political historians are likely to treat the Rudd and Gillard governments far more kindly than many contemporary commentators have - and certainly more kindly than the Murdoch press has. The passing of…
The Australian Coalition arrangement is set apart from coalitions elsewhere by its ongoing nature, even in opposition, and the fact that the parties go into elections with a common election platform. AAP

Minority government likely to continue after Saturday

Much has been made of the ‘unusual’ nature of the minority Labor government over the past three years and there has been a sense that Australia is better off without it; that we need a return to the stability…
Carbon pricing remains a hot political football that no political party is quite sure how best to handle. AAP/Alan Porritt

Is a referendum on the carbon tax political suicide for Labor?

In recent days, opposition leader Tony Abbott has more forcefully argued that, if successful in winning the Saturday poll, his new government would have the mandate to scrap the government’s carbon pricing…
Will the real Kevin Rudd please stand up? AAP/Lukas Coch

Sunrise Kevin and Egomaniacal Kevin: the two Rudds

There are two Kevin Rudds. One is the energetic ideas man, the promising new face of the Australian Labor Party who might just be the party’s saviour. “I’m Kevin, I’m from Queensland and I’m here to help…
The last few years in Australian politics have seen the rise of a new definition of ‘lying’. AAP/Lukas Coch

Redefining the lie: politics and porkies

Lie (v.) (1) To make a politically unpopular statement; (2) [retrospectively applied] To make a statement which appears inconsistent with a more recent statement, indicating that its maker has changed…
Kevin Rudd is fighting another election. Just like the other elections, this is the most important since the last one. AAP/Alan Porritt

Election 2013: the campaign that never ended

It’s an exquisitely portentous cliché, the one that is always trotted out at each Australian election: this is the most important election in a generation, or since World War Two, or the advent of television…
Kevin Rudd has been working hard to neutralise key policy issues - such as asylum seekers - before announcing the date for the federal election. AAP/Dan Himbrechts

Tick, tick, tick … is Kevin Rudd setting the election timer?

It has been almost one month since Kevin Rudd returned to The Lodge. Rudd was charged with the responsibility of making Labor competitive in the upcoming election. But what do his actions since taking…
Kevin Rudd is back as prime minister. But can he change party rules to prevent leaders being ousted as he was in 2010? AAP/Dan Peled

Labor in vain: will the Rudd party reforms work?

Today, a specially convened meeting of the Labor caucus will decide on proposed changes to how the party selects its parliamentary leader. The politics of leadership in Australia have been described as…
In most of our workplaces and institutions there are subtle, cumulative, insidious judgements and responses that serve to reinforce the powerful status quo of leadership. Image sourced from www.shutterstock.com

Is this the end of the gender wars?

Accounts in the media over the past week explain, or rather rationalise, the downfall of our first female Prime Minister. One-time feminist warrior Eva Cox found that Julia Gillard failed to communicate…
The problem for Gillard has always been the ‘Rudd-factor’, and arguably her prime ministership never got off the ground. AAP/Alan Porritt

The leadership war is over – where to from here for the ALP?

Australia’s 43rd federal parliament has proven that politics is anything but boring. Capping off a day when the two independent kingmakers, Tony Windsor and Rob Oakeshott, announced that they would not…
How much of a role did the media play in the political demise of Julia Gillard as prime minister? AAP/Tony McDonough

Ethical lapses by journalists contributed to Gillard’s demise

An integral power of the media is that of portrayal: the act of determining how people, events, ideas and organisations are described to the public, and therefore how they are perceived by the public…
Is the decision to re-install Kevin Rudd as leader of the ALP and of the country an affront to Australian democracy? AAP/Alan Porritt

Once bitten, twice shy: Labor again betrays the Australian people

The decision by the Labor caucus to minimise the electoral damage in September and return Kevin Rudd to the party leadership was short-sighted and ultimately self-destructive. More importantly, it operated…

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