Saturday, 28 November 2009

Media wrap - The Liberal leadership contest



Liberals facing election rout – The Coalition faces an electoral wipeout at next year's federal election if the rebels led by Tony Abbott and Nick Minchin succeed in blocking the government's climate change legislation – The Australian

Tony Abbott favourite to wrest leadership - Abbott was last night the frontrunner to oust Malcolm Turnbull from the Liberal leadership next week and steer his troubled party away from his support for Kevin Rudd's climate change policies – The Australian

Malcolm Turnbull unmoved as support dives – The instant Malcolm Turnbull accepted the resignations of Tony Abbott and Nick Minchin on Thursday afternoon, his Liberal Party support base began to collapse. According to angry colleagues, the Opposition Leader's blunt rejection of a proposal for compromise by Mr Abbott was probably the beginning of the end for the former banker, or at the very least the beginning of the biggest fight of Mr Turnbull's political career – The Australian

Hockey in hot seat – Liberal Party powerbrokers are trying to dump Malcolm Turnbull for Joe Hockey in a bid to unify the party and block the emissions trading scheme - a move that will give the Rudd Government a trigger for a double dissolution election –Sydney Morning Herald

Devil of a decision for Liberals' latest hope – If Joe Hockey wants to be the next leader of the Liberal Party the job is his - for a price. It's very expensive. He will spend this weekend agonising over whether he wants to pay it – Sydney Morning Herald

I won't be spooked: Turnbull – A resolute Malcolm Turnbull declared last night that he would not be ''spooked'' into stepping down as Liberal Party leader after his opponents mounted a new assault aimed at installing Joe Hockey in the job on Tuesday –Sydney Morning Herald

CLP, Labor prepare for early federal election - If the Federal Government's emissions trading scheme (ETS) is voted down or deferred by the Senate on Monday, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is likely to call a double-dissolution election.- Northern Territory News

Climate right for an ambush early Liberal election – The Government is opening the path to an early climate change election as the Liberal Party crisis drags out into next week with a dramatic leadership showdown – Sydney Daily Telegraph

Malcolm Turnbull vows to fight for Liberal leadership – The majority of Queenslanders approve of Malcolm Turnbull's decision to agree to a deal on climate change despite the move almost certainly costing him his leadership. A Galaxy poll, conducted exclusively for The Courier-Mail, shows 56 per cent of Queenslanders approved of the agreement on the ETS, including 73 per cent of ALP voters and 42 per cent of Coalition voters. But 50 per cent of Liberal and Nationals supporters said they do not back Mr Turnbull's actions.

Double trouble might trigger election  Adelaide Advertiser

State MPs in Liberal revolt - Among high-profile party members in open revolt was Tasmanian senator Eric Abetz, the party's Deputy Leader in the Senate. Late last night his state colleagues David Bushby and Stephen Parry also resigned – Hobart Mercury

Hockey's time may come too soon – Should he step into the breach and declare himself a candidate for the leadership of his shattered party, Joe Hockey would be one of the most reluctant leaders ever to head the Coalition – The Australian

Leader prolongs agony – Michelle Grattan in the Melbourne Agewrits that Malcolm Turnbull knows surely that either he will be defeated or, if by some miracle he survived, his ongoing leadership would be untenable and the party would fall into even more chaos.

Ordinary Joe an appealing leading man – A profile of the reluctant challenger – the Melbourne Age

Bishop to weigh up the party room odds – Deputy Liberal leader Julie Bishop will spend the weekend phoning colleagues to gauge her support in the party room before Monday's leadership spill –Melbourne Age

Force may be with Dutton for deputy job – Peter Dutton is the second former Queensland policeman to arrive at Parliament inCanberra and initially be dismissed as another Constable Plod. The first was Bill Hayden, who rose to Labor leader and subsequently governor-general. Mr Dutton's supporters say there is nothing plodding about the man who may well be deputy Liberal leader by early next week – Melbourne Age

Senate roadblock stalls deal – Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull's deal to pass Labor's emissions trading scheme hit a wall yesterday when his own senators refused to back a gag motion to bring on the final vote – Melbourne Age

What the ETS battle is about – On one side of the climate divide in the Liberal Party are those who believe the planet is warming due to human activity and that action is needed to cut carbon emissions. Many in this group aligned to Malcolm Turnbull also make a political calculation: that voters strongly believe in climate change and want action taken to tackle it. On the other side of the debate are a mix of motives and arguments. Some Liberals insist the climate is no longer warming. Others suggest that, even if the planet is warming, they are deeply sceptical that human activity is driving it.

Battle of the airwaves as Libs state their case – An outline of a day in Canberra and in the media around the country

NSW in the eye of the leadership storm - For years, in the federal Liberal Party, when it comes to leadership stoushes or speculation, it has been Sydney versus Melbourne. These days Sydney dominates. There were only ever three serious choices as leader this week: Malcolm Turnbull, Joe Hockey and Tony Abbott. And the bloke they last replaced as leader was also a Sydneysider - Brendan Nelson – Sydney Morning Herald

Turnbull gave the right's man the chance to do what he liked - Minchin lost faith in Turnbull's ability during the OzCar affair in June. Then, when Turnbull sought to push the party towards negotiating with Labor on the emissions trading scheme, Minchin, who does not believe in man-made climate change, declared war – Sydney Morning Herald

Rees gains no bounce from sacking Tripodi – Nathan Rees has failed to gain any bounce from sacking Joe Tripodi and deciding to ban donations from developers, a Herald/Nielsen poll shows, in what are probably terminal signs for the Premier's leadership. Labor's primary vote remains at 31 per cent to the Coalition's 43 per cent. On a two-party preferred basis, the Coalition leads 55-45 – Sydney Morning Herald

Emissions scheme misses deadline - By 3.45pm the Senate had spent 28 hours debating amendments to the legislation drawn up between Wong and her Opposition counterpart, Ian Macfarlane. Of about 300 amendments, the Senate got though about 34 – Sydney Morning Herald


The heat is on in Bradfield - In the byelection next Saturday Liberal infighting is likely to cost the party votes, probably to the Greens, says the election analyst Antony Green. He believes the brawling has focused attention on climate change to such an extent that some may switch their vote – Sydney Morning Herald


Anger simmers in paradise lost on Christmas Island – Piers Akerman visits Christmas Island to report for the Sydney Daily Telegraph

Blitz on working holiday visa scam – A specialist integrity unit has been formed inside the Department of Immigration to deal with widespread fraud in the working holiday visa program, on which industries such as fruit growing depend – Sydney Morning Herald

Aboriginal affairs

$2bn diverted from aid for Aborigines and welfare – The Northern Territory Labor government has for the past five years diverted $2 billion earmarked for indigenous disadvantage and other key services to mainstream spending in marginal Darwin seats – The Australian

Open Government

Health department accused of censorship – The University of Sydney removed from its website an extremely critical essay about a new multimillion-dollar emergency department IT system after pressure from the NSW Health Department – Sydney Morning Herald


Party rift puts liberalism at the crossroads - The Melbourne Age editorial says: Mr Turnbull has spurned calls to step down beforehand, a stance that some see as another instance of his unhelpful arrogance but which is correct in the circumstances: by rejecting him the Liberals will be declaring where they stand on an environmental crisis facing the entire planet, and they should be prepared to do so honestly.

Folly of Liberal change of heart – The Sydney Daily Telegraph editorial: … this current crisis is tearing apart the entire federal Liberal party. Even worse for the Liberals is that the central issue in this ongoing debacle, climate change, will remain in play no matter who Turnbull is replaced by.

Liberals jump to the left and lurch to the right – The Sydney Morning Herald editorial says: Turnbull believes, rightly, that the Liberal Party is unelectable if it appears opposed to an emissions trading scheme. Turnbull's opponents believe, also apparently with justification, that the party will split if it is asked to support the carbon pollution reduction scheme. For the sake of party unity, they want to delay. The party is thus forced to choose between what is good for the Liberal Party, or good for the country. We believe it must choose the latter.

Liberals in red-hot trouble on climate – The editorial in The Australian in laying siege to Malcolm Turnbull's leadership, his Liberal Party opponents are doing more than fighting to throw him over - they are dismantling the foundations of their own political future. Replacing the Opposition Leader will not mark the end of Liberal divisions.

Shadows lengthen - With a crippled leader and the prospect of an early election wipe-out, the sun is setting on the Liberals writes Shaun Carney in the Melbourne Age

Malcolm Turnbull headed for the political sewer – Laurie Oakes in the Brisbane Courier Mail likens Malcolm Turnbull to Saint Sebastian – having emerged from two party meetings during the week riddled with arrows but, to the frustration of his opponents, still alive. So on Thursday Tony Abbott, Liberal senate leader Nick Minchin, and a bunch of other front-benchers set about beating him to death. The sewer awaits.

Rebellion may ruin the Liberals – Mark Kenny in the Adelaide Advertiser declares the so-called "Turnbull experiment", which many Liberals entered into only reluctantly when Brendan Nelson imploded, is over. The party that briefly departed from the divisive politics of John Howard, now looks to be lurching back to the right. This is a classic sucker move induced by the success of the centrist Kevin Rudd phenomenon. There, on the right, it will find ideological purity but little or no scope for electoral success. The federal Liberal Party has just adopted a recipe for failure.

Rebels with a lost cause – Paul Kelly in The Australian sees the test for the Liberals as whether this wilful contest becomes an act of political suicide or offers the means to salvage a better electoral position. The future of the Liberal Party for years hinges upon this question.

Pitchfork revolt punctures the carbon bubble – Michael Stutchbury in The Australian says the Rudd-Turnbull greenhouse gas emissions deal is supposed to give business the certainty it needs to pour billions of dollars into transforming Australia into a low-carbon economy. But, like the conservative political revolt it has triggered, the course of Australia's biggest policy upheaval in a generation is anything but certain.

Shadowy scenes from a political soap opera – Dennis Shanahan writes in The Australian that thanks to the smoking ruin that is the Liberal Party and the quicksand of confusion in the Senate, two critical political events appear likely to take place next week in Canberra; there will be a ballot for the Liberal leadership and the government's emissions trading scheme will be deferred.

Pros and cons of product differentiation – Peter van Onselen in The Australian remembers that Liberal Party founder Robert Menzies said of the dark days of opposition: "To my mind, the chief objective of an opposition should be to make voters feel that the opposition, in both personnel and ideas, is as different as possible." The battle over the soul of the Liberal Party we have seen played out this week goes to the essence of Menzies' point: differentiation with the government. Is it right to differentiate on climate change policy, or is doing so a recipe for electoral annihilation? Liberals are split down the middle.

Minchin plays a game to match Machiavelli - In all his long years of perfecting the strategy of divide and conquer, this was surely Nick Minchin’s most cunning construction. He had only to ensure the debate on the endless emissions trading scheme amendments — about 200 of them — would string along until he and his lieutenants had put in place the means to lever Malcolm Turnbull out of his job – Tony Wright in the Melbourne Age

Be patient, Malcolm – Graham Reilly in the Melbourne Age asks: Why can't Malcolm's recalcitrant ''colleagues'' just come out and say we just want to stick it up him? I would have more sympathy with that than for their current lemming-like sprint to the cliff top at the bottom of which lies only years of political obscurity and rising sea levels.

Even before Copenhagen, the world is moving – Tim Colebatch writes in the Melbourne Age that Liberal Party is now divided into three camps on climate change - and the only policy on which a majority can agree is to delay a decision.

The greening of Higgins - ''We wanted to turn this into the climate change byelection and events this week have done that for us,'' said Greens' candidate Dr Clive Hamilton, a Canberra academic parachuted into the seat – Melbourne Age

Liberals wallow in sceptic tank – Miranda Devine in the Sydney Morning Herald sees Tony Abbott as the intellectual leader of a pared-down Liberal Party that will emerge from the ashes Turnbull leaves behind.

Rudd's scheme unfair but effective – argues Ross Gittins in the Sydney Morning Herald

Holding Liberalism together – Gerard Henderson believes there is little prospect the Liberal Party will follow Labor down the disastrous path of a big split – Sydney Morning Herald

Hoist on their own petard - If Malcolm Turnbull's week needed further darkening, take a peek at the emails behind his second-greatest political miscalculation. Jacob Saulwick reports in the Sydney Morning Herald

Floundering against the global current – Peter Hartcher in the Sydney Morning Herald finds that somehow a seemingly irresistible force for climate change action unravelled. Now it's time to point fingers at those responsible. 'Good Malcolm' fights his bad side – Malcolm Turnbull appears to be preparing to do something unusual in politics - put his leadership to the sword rather than retreat on a point of principle – Mark Metherell in the Sydney Morning Herald


Another crisis looms over the world - Tribulation in the Gulf state of Dubai threatens to derail global recovery – Sydney Morning Herald


Deep climate cuts needed, says Europe - As momentum builds for the Copenhagen talks, the President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso, and the Swedish Prime Minister, Fredrik Reinfeldt, signalled that the two biggest polluters needed to be more ambitious in their plans to limit greenhouse gas emissions. ''We hope that both the Chinese and US indications represent the first steps towards steeper reductions,'' the leaders said in a joint statement – Sydney Morning Herald

Rudd plan to help small islands hit by rising seas - Kevin Rudd will this weekend announce financial help for small island states affected by climate change. His initiative will come at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Trinidad and Tobago, which is shaping as a last-minute attempt to rally support for the Copenhagen summit – Sydney Morning Herald

Marine scientists issue call to arms after devastating report – More than 70 Australian marine scientists have called for immediate action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions after the release of the first report card on the impact of climate change on the marine environment – Sydney Morning Herald


Looking good never mattered to departing TV veteran Ian Ross – After yesterday bowing out as Sydney's long-serving No. 1 newsreader, Ian Ross now plans to lead a humble life - drinking champagne and travelling the world – Sydney Daily Telegraph



Hope for the disabled in airline fight – Disability advocates hope the Paralympian Kurt Fearnley can do what others are already trying to do in the courts: force Australian airlines to change the way they treat disabled passengers – Sydney Morning Herald

Real estate

First-home buyers fade away - There were just 2626 first-home buyers in NSW last month, the first month without the full Federal Government boost. There had been 6079 first-home buyer grants in September during a rush to capitalise on the last days of the full boost – Sydney Morning Herald

Horse racing

South Australia now only state to allow jump racingSouth Australia will be the only state allowing jumps racing after the 2010 season - but officials fear for its long-term survival. .Victoria today announced it would axe jumps after the 2010 racing season – Adelaide Advertiser


Poorer schools outshine the rest – The nation's first school comparisons were released yesterday by the Victorian government, highlighting the greater improvement made by students in disadvantaged schools compared with their more affluent peers – The Australian

More than 130 Victorian state schools identified as underperforming - The State Government vowed to help struggling schools as comprehensive school performance data went online for the first time – Melbourne Herald Sun


Brumby Government bans group linked to Church of Scientology from Victorian schools – The Government acted after learning from the Herald Sun that thousands of dollars of taxpayers' money was used to back a school art prize run by the Scientology-sponsored Youth for Human Rights. It follows a similar move by the NSW Government last week - Melbourne Herald Sun

The drink

Schoolies from NSW to cause more troubles on Gold Coast – They don't start arriving en masse until today, but southern schoolies are already causing headaches for Gold Coast police. Five NSW schoolies were arrested on Thursday night and early yesterday, including one who was caught with an extendable baton – Brisbane Courier Mail

Too many drunks at hospitals – Drunks  are overburdening the state's hospital emergency rooms, researchers have found. Each year about 3000 people die and 65,000 are taken to hospital in Australia because of alcohol abuse, the Alcohol Education and Rehabilitation Foundation (AER) said – Sydney Daily Telegraph
Post a Comment