Sunday, 6 December 2009

Media wrap - Liberals win by-elections in convincing style


POLITICS AND ECONOMICS

Elections

First round to Abbott as Libs win – The Liberal Party has comfortably retained its blue-ribbon seats of Higgins and Bradfield in what is a significant boost for new leader Tony Abbott and an early sign that his opposition to Labor's emissions trading scheme has support in the conservative heartland – Melbourne Sunday Age


O'Dwyer straight out of Liberal central casting – a pen portrait of the new member for Higgins – Melbourne Sunday Age

Libs claim Higgins winMelbourne Sunday Herald Sun

Liberals win blue-ribbon by-elections – The Liberals have declared victory in Saturday's by-elections for the stronghold seats of Higgins and Bradfield. However, the Greens were celebrating their performance, calling it their ``best-ever'' result in a Liberal-held seat – Adelaide Sunday Mail


Leadership

Malcolm Turnbull lashes out – Malcolm Turnbull has attacked new Opposition Leader Tony Abbott's climate change stance in his first electorate newsletter since he lost the leadership – Sydney Sunday Telegraph

Wife: Tony Abbott is a man of trust – Tony Abbott's wife insists her husband does not have a problem with women voters. But Margie Abbott says that, despite her husband's strong views on abortion, she understands that any woman who finds it difficult having "a bloke" tell her what do in what is an intensely personal decision – Sydney Sunday Telegraph

Talking it up: Labor dubs Abbott the $60bn man – The Federal Government is demanding Tony Abbott clarify his policy positions, saying his ideas so far would cost $63 billion – Sydney Sun Herald

No secrets in the Abbott family – The wife of Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has revealed the emotional rollercoaster she suffered when news broke of her husband's supposed "love child" – Brisbane Sunday Mail

Malcolm Turnbull urged to create 'third force' political party – As Malcolm Turnbull contemplates his future, colleagues and supporters are urging him to stay in Parliament in the event Tony Abbott's high-risk leadership blows up and the Liberal Party has to return to him. But with Mr Turnbull biding his time on the backbench, after losing the leadership ballot 42-41, some are also urging him to establish a new "third force" political party, an idea they say he canvassed privately before becoming Opposition leader – Sydney Sunday Telegraph

Labor return to core values – Kristina Kristina Keneally is planning to adopt a back-to-basics approach to policy as Labor strategists race against the clock to woo back voters before the next election – Sydney Sunday Telegraph

Nathan Rees vows to fight on – Dumped premier Nathan Rees has vowed to stay in politics and has thrown down a challenge to Kristina Keneally: continue the reform agenda – Sydney Sunday Telegraph

Sour PM takes sweet time greeting Premier – Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is so furious with the NSW Labor Party that he has delivered a humiliating snub to new Premier Kristina Keneally. In a break with tradition, Mr Rudd avoided ringing the fledgling leader of the nation's most populous state for more than 40 hours to congratulate her on becoming NSW's first female premier – Sydney Sun Herald

Security

Rudd's ABC security scare – Federal police are investigating a security incident involving Prime Minister Kevin Rudd at the ABC's Sydney studios on Friday night – Melbourne Sunday Age

Health and hospitals

Anna Bligh out to unite states in health fix – Queensland will outline a major reform of the nation's health system at tomorrow's Council of Australian Governments meeting in Brisbane – Sydney Sunday Telegraph

Local government

Merger plans in tatters and branded 'waste of money' – Plans to amalgamate WA's councils are in tatters, with only nine out of 139 local government authorities set to merge – Perth Sunday Times

Opinions

Results can only be seen as good for new man at the top - These results will be regarded as a significant victory for Abbott and the Liberals' climate sceptics. But it is difficult to draw any real conclusions about the national political landscape – Josh Gordon in the Melbourne Sunday Age

Now for the Abbott factor – Josh Gordon in the Melbourne Sunday Age says the argument that Abbott is unelectable because of a ''women problem'' is almost certainly overstated. An analysis of recent ''preferred leader'' polling data by Age/Nielsen pollster John Stirton found no significant hostility towards Abbott among women voters compared to men. The danger for Abbott is not that he does not appeal to women. It is that he appeals only to people to the right of centre who are already rusted-on Coalition voters.

Time for true liberals to break away - The rupture in the Liberal Party may have made it unsustainable as a unit, suggesting that Menzies' vision of a liberal party be best honoured by splitting, not preserving the party in its current form – Guy Rundle in the Melbourne Sunday Age

Circuit-breaker for a struggling Coalition – Piers Akerman in the Sydney Sunday Telegraph writes you have to love Australian politics, fair dinkum; in what other nation would a party leader’s choice of swimwear become a topic for national debate?

Buckle up for one hell of a ride – Paul Daley in the Sydney Sun Herald says if a week is a long time in politics, a day is an eternity in Abbott’s leadership. So hold on tight, because with Abbott in the seat it’s going to be quite a ride up to – and during – the next election campaign.

Misstep could give Hockey wrong end of the stick – The shadow treasurer must be careful that his misjudgment in last week's spill doesn't damage his eventual leadership aspirations says Michelle Grattan in the Sydney Sun Herald

Abbott's all about being authentic - The Liberals believe that one of the central themes of the next election will be this contest between authenticity, represented by Abbott and confection represented by Rudd – Glenn Milne in the Sydney Sunday Telegraph

Redrawing the battlelines - Tony Abbott faces an uphill campaign to convince many female voters he's a new man – writes Stephanie Peatling in the Sydney Sun Herald

BUSINESS

A classic tale for a book listing - The team behind bookstore chain Angus and Robertson have that in mind because they're considering a stock market listing of the REDgroup, the conglomerate that owns the famous book chain along with the Australian operations of the Borders bookstore operation – Melbourne Sunday Age

Big banks gouging $7 billion from borrowers – The big banks are gouging $7 billion a year from borrowers by raising interest rates more than the Reserve Bank and refusing to pass on official cuts in full – Sydney Sunday Telegraph

Superannuation returns early present for investors – Christmas has come early for superannuation, with most Australian funds clawing back almost all of last year's losses to push balances back up by about 10 per cent – Brisbane Sunday Mail

ENVIRONMENT

Call to action on eve of talks – Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has called for action at the Copenhagen climate talks, saying Australia needs to do more than ''cross its fingers and hope for the best'' in talks that are seen as vital for the future of the planet – Melbourne Sunday Age

Delegates gas it up for Copenhagen climate change talksAustralia will emit more than 400 tonnes of greenhouse gases in sending one of the world's largest parties to this month's Copenhagen climate talks – Brisbane Sunday Mail

Twelve days to change the face of our planet – Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has called for action at the Copenhagen climate talks, saying Australia needs to do more than ''cross its fingers and hope for the best'' in talks that are seen as critical to the future of the planet.

MEDIA

KAK: A network owner unzipped my dress – She’s affectionately known as KAK but former Channel Nine owner Kerry Packer had another name for Kerri-Anne Kennerley. "He may have remembered my name but he would always call me 'Girlie'," Kennerley recalled last week – Sydney Sunday Telegraph

LIFE

Science

Seven scientists at synchrotron issue ultimatum – The embattled chairwoman of the Australian Synchrotron board has been given until Wednesday to resign, or leading scientists will carry through with their threat to abandon the facility. Seven members of the synchrotron's nine-member scientific advisory committee have demanded that Catherine Walter step down, saying she has lost their confidence and that the good governance of the facility is at stake – Melbourne Sunday Age

Childcare

Bid to lift childcare standards – Childcare centres will be forced to meet minimum staff ratios and will be ranked to allow parents to compare quality, under a sweeping overhaul – Melbourne Sunday Age

Parent group slams pre-primary tests - WA's peak parent group has slammed a plan to test pre-primary students next year as a waste of money, saying it's "ridiculous" to assess children as young as four – Perth Sunday Times

Real estate

Banks under fire as prices soar – The banks came in for a caning at auctions around Sydney yesterday but the latest interest rate rises did not stop big prices being paid for homes in the inner western suburbs – Sydney Sunday Telegraph

Adelaide auction sales ease offSouth Australia's auction sales have cooled slightly with 62 per cent of properties selling under the hammer in the past week – Adelaide Sunday Mail

The drink

Restricted drink-drive licences under review - Restricted work licences for drink-drivers are under review, with road safety experts saying they have become a cop-out for offenders – Brisbane Sunday Mail

Drunks plague hospital nights – Emergency nurse Emma Onelli and her colleagues have been spat at, punched and kicked by violent drunks. "Alcohol is a huge problem in society," Ms Onelli said yesterday as she joined forces with Tasmania Police in the lead-up to next weekend's nationwide crackdown on drunken violence.” – Hobart Mercury

Bullying

Teachers trapped by class bullyingVictoria’s teachers are in the middle of a bullying epidemic in our schools, official research has revealed. A WorkSafe study has found occupational bullying is on the rise, with one in five workers suffering some form of intimidation or abuse. And those in the education and training sector are the worst offenders, with 39 per cent of staff reporting they have been repeatedly bullied - double the state average – Melbourne Sunday Herald Sun

Foodies

Barossa foodies fight new McDonalds restaurant - Plans by fast-food giant McDonald's to open a restaurant in Nuriootpa have upset some of the Barossa's most high-profile food and wine identities, including celebrity cook and food manufacturer Maggie Beer and wine legend Margaret Lehmann – Adelaide Sunday Mail

Crime victims compensation

Victims of crime demand criminal injuries law change – Victims of crime have demanded an overhaul of WA's criminal injuries compensation laws, calling for payouts regardless of whether attackers are convicted – Perth Sunday Times

Personal relationships

Stop having sex in public – Community leaders have called on Territorians to stop having sex in public. Katherine Mayor Anne Shepherd said yesterday she had seen people having sex in public "several times". "It's sickening," she said. "Alcohol is involved, of course - it makes people lose their inhibitions – Sunday Territorian

Welfare

Scrooge comes to Centrelink – Welfare and seniors groups are urging the Federal Government to change the reporting requirements for pensioners with casual jobs because tough new rules are discouraging them from working.
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