Comings and goings

More internal party jockeying ahead of a federal election most expect to be held later this year.

Another week’s worth of federal preselection developments. For the latest on the Western Australian election campaign, see the post below.

Richard Ferguson of The Australian reports there is “speculation” Senator Kristina Keneally might move to the House of Representatives amid a preselection battle with Right faction colleague Deborah O’Neill, in which the winner will get the factionally reserved top position on the ticket while the loser will be relegated to highly loseable third place.

• Nick Champion, who has held the seat of Spence (formerly Wakefield) for Labor since 2007, will move to state politics in the safe seat of Taylor at the next election in March 2022. Champion is aligned with the socially conservative Shop Distributive Allied and Employees Association sub-faction of the Right, and is a member of the pro-coal mining Otis Group. No apparent word on who might be in line to replace him in Spence, which is now a safe seat.

The Brisbane Times reports the preselection of Graham Perrett, who has held the Brisbane seat of Moreton for Labor since 2007, faces a preselection challenge from state party secretary Julie-Ann Campbell, who among other things has affirmative action considerations in her favour.

• The South Australian Liberals have finalised their Senate ticket, with incumbents Simon Birmingham and Andrew McLachlan taking the top two positions and the third going to Kerrynne Liddle, a factional moderate of indigenous background who works as a staffer to Social Services Minister and SA Senator Anne Ruston. Tom Richardson of InDaily reports Liddle was chosen ahead of state party vice-president Rachel Swift by a margin of 130 to 78.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

1,276 comments on “Comings and goings”

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  1. At venues where there are senior discounts I’ve been asked if I’m “senior”. Sometimes I answer “I’m not senior, just old”.

  2. Hey,
    10 points to Albo if before the end of the week he can get the line
    “what did the PM know and when did he know it?”

    Also, anyone expecting consequences.

  3. This plausible deniability is a great tool in a politician’s armory isn’t it? And someone like Morrison is just the man to make the most of it.

    Only if it remains plausible.

  4. Stella Yee

    If the Minister for Defence cannot deal with a crime committed in her office, how can we have confidence in her ability to defend our country?

  5. It seems Morrison rebuking Reynolds claims is the same as Craig Kelly nothing was said at all.

    If Morrison was telling the truth that his office did not know , Reynolds would be sacked for not reporting a incident which could involved a crime being committed.
    Morrison should resign for lying , lucky for him he has newsltd and other corrupt media to protect him and the liberal/nats

  6. Michelle Grattan is saying Morrison’s public rebuke of Reynolds was the dressing down:

    An angry Morrison on Tuesday publicly rebuked Defence Minister Linda Reynolds for failing to inform him, as he tried to contain the fallout from her former staffer Brittany Higgins’ explosive account.

    Morrison told the House he only learned of the rape allegation early Monday, shortly before the story was posted by Samantha Maiden on

    He didn’t mince words. Asked whether it was acceptable that the defence minister hadn’t informed him or his office of a “reported serious crime”, he said: “It is not – and it shouldn’t happen again”.

  7. Good morning Dawn Patrollers

    David Crowe writes that a crucial dispute has erupted over allegations of rape in Parliament House after Scott Morrison said his office was only told of the events last week, a claim at odds with statements from former staffer Brittany Higgins.
    And Katina Curis reports that twin reviews of Parliament’s workplace culture are now under way after a staffer alleged a colleague raped her may result in mandatory reporting, psychological testing for new advisers and a review of security.
    Katherine Murphy declares that Australians don’t need a father figure, Scott Morrison. They need a prime minister.
    Jacqui Maley says it shouldn’t take a rape to change a political culture that women have endured for years.
    And politics lecturer Maria Maley explains why political staffers are vulnerable to sexual misconduct – and little is done to stop it. She says it is leadership from the top that is needed to change a culture that enables and tolerates poor conduct.
    Phil Coorey suggests that Morrison may have thrown Lynda Renolds under the bus.
    And so does Katherine Murphy.
    Michelle Grattan says Linda Reynolds feels the lash after Scott Morrison says he was blindsided by the rape allegation.
    The New Daily’s Christine Jackman says the focus must shift to sexual assault itself after the sorry excuse for response to it.
    “When will Conservatives ever treat women with a modicum of decency, even dignity?”, asks John Lord.
    Twice herself a victim of sexual assault and rape, Amy Remeikis writes that too many men need to imagine a woman they love to feel empathy.
    This is quite a good contribution from Chris Uhlmann about the risk appetites of the PM and the LOTO.
    For all the challenges, it’s a good time to be a Premier or a Prime Minister in Australia, but Shaun Carney asks when it will end.
    Paul Kelly calls for conservatives to be brave and deny fealty to Trumpism.
    David Crowe and Mike Foley write that Barnaby Joyce infuriated Liberal MPs by lodging a formal amendment in Parliament yesterday to overturn the longstanding limits on the Clean Energy Finance Corporation spending money on fossil fuel projects.
    Ross Gittins looks at what is buried in the Productivity Commission’s draft report on national water reform and what he sees there are big warnings.
    Rachel Klun reports that NSW quarantine and essential border workers will all be vaccinated against the coronavirus within three weeks, with the state set to receive more than 14,000 doses a week of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.
    An expert witness to Victoria’s hotel quarantine inquiry has called for the rebooted program to be shut down following a string of infection control breaches.
    And Stephen Duckett and Brendan Coates say that the Morrison government should live up to its constitutional responsibilities and establish national quarantine facilities.
    Peter Lewis says Scott Morrison’s job description for 2021 is keeping the virus out and ensuring an effective vaccine rollout.
    This epidemiologist will be glad to get whatever vaccine he is offered.
    Jacinda Ardern has unloaded on Scott Morrison, accusing Australia of “exporting its problems” amid a row over a former dual citizen who is allegedly aligned with ISIS.
    Matthew Elmas writes that the ACCC has inferred that our gas market is broken and consumers are paying too much.
    The AIMN’s RossLeigh reckons Morrison needs a bigger carpet to sweep things under.
    Peter Hannam tells us that the Insurance Council of Australia has dropped its support for the Berejiklian government’s plan to lift the Warragamba Dam wall and called on it to find other ways to reduce downstream flood risks in western Sydney.
    The federal government is extending its push to make it harder for disgruntled shareholders and class action lawyers to sue businesses.
    Australia’s aged-care system is failing to meet the care needs of the vast majority of those using it despite overwhelming public support for quality aged care, a new study has shown.
    Philanthropist Nicola Forrest is on a mission to transform Australia’s childcare system, so it works for parents and children instead of being expensive and hard to access.
    Garry Linnell declares that the Catholic Church has no right to lecture us on ethics or morality. He says the issue at stake is the federal government’s decision to buy 50 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, which the majority of Australians will be offered over the coming six months.
    Hiding behind a pay wall and in hoc to its advertisers, The Bully, The Townsville Bulletin, is a law unto itself in Queensland as its owners demand subsidies from the Government. Should we pay? asks Kim Wingerei? Meanwhile, Seven Network gets the first forced payment from Google for its “journalism”.
    Australians have proven highly capable of adapting international conspiracy theories like QAnon to the local context – and the problem is not going away, says Michael McGowan.
    John Collett explains how Paul Keating has warned against ‘poking holes’ in superannuation and said that it is taxation policy, not super, that will fix the housing affordability problem.
    Emma Kemp tells us how the AFL is considering a proposal for the establishment of a multimillion-dollar fund to assist past, present and future players suffering from the long-term effects of concussion in what could, if accepted, become a watershed moment in Australia’s sporting landscape.
    Casino giant Crown Resorts’ search for new board members is being led by Harold Mitchell who himself is under pressure to resign.
    Meanwhile the AFR reports that legal heavyweights are saying the corporate regulator should investigate whether any Crown directors allowed criminal activities to flourish at the gambling giant, in a potential breach of their duties to shareholders.
    Since World War II Australia has progressively ceded its sovereignty to the United States, argues Bruce Haigh. He says the process was hastened by former Prime Minister John Howard who had little sense of national independence.,14805
    The Trades Union Council has urged the UK foreign secretary to reject the Australian candidate to lead the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), saying it would set back the fight against poverty and the climate crisis.
    A Democratic congressman has filed a lawsuit accusing former president Donald Trump and lawyer Rudy Giuliani of conspiring to incite the violent riot that shook the US Capitol. The little-used Ku Klux Klan Act is being used. Let the litigation games begin!
    Today’s “Arsehole of the Week” nomination goes to former Olympic silver medallist, Scott Miller, who was collared yesterday over allegedly masterminding a multi-million drug ring.

    Cartoon Corner

    Cathy Wilcox

    David Rowe

    Matt Golding

    Mark David

    A good gif from Glen Le Lievre
    Mark Knight

    Johannes Leak

    Fiona Katauskas

    Simon Letch

    John Shakespeare

    Andrew Dyson

    From the US

  8. Morning all. As Cat said:
    “ If the Minister for Defence cannot deal with a crime committed in her office, how can we have confidence in her ability to defend our country?”

    Indeed. Looking at Brittany Higgins allegations, the Libs are now desperately trying to discredit and cast doubt on them. How good is plausible deniability?

    But the deibals are NOT plausible. Worst case, imagine if the sex was consensual and the allegations were otherwise false. It would still mean that two Liberal party staffers could sneak into the Defense Minister’s office late at night and do whatever they liked, even if at least one of them was clearly drunk. What if they took classified documents? Can anyone believe nobody would have been concerned/known about this?

    In March 2019 Reynold’s was dealing with the decision on the new Attack Class submarines purchase, which at $50 billion, was the largest Defense contract to date. The decision to pick France was a surprise, and information on that would have been incredibly valuable.

  9. Further to the above, we have also heard nothing from the former Liberal staffer who was the alleged rapist. Why not? If its false, why no denial? If its true, why the secrecy?

    It must have been a fairly senior staffer who could get access to Reynold’s office late at night.

    Can the PM assure us the alleged rapist is not still employed by the Liberal Party? That he is not still employed at public expense? That he has not been pre-selected for a parliamentary candidature? Can the APH security office assure us whether Reynold’s office was entered or not?

  10. mb

    Wasn’t what I was saying. In fact, the opposite – I made it clear we were surprised when women were supportive of women, BECAUSE it is accepted that they’re not.

    To me, this is a gendered thing when it shouldn’t be. Women are sometimes supportive of women. Sometimes they’re supportive of men. Men are sometimes supportive of men. Sometimes they’re supportive of women. Sometimes no one is supportive.

    My post was pushing back at the idea that women can’t get along and (particularly) that female dominated workplaces are necessarily Bad.

    We’ve all known male dominated workplaces which are (and others which were great, and others which were mediocre) but we accept that as ‘normal’ because male dominated workplaces are what we’re used to.

  11. I’m posting this because of all the times we’ve had ‘how could Labor vote against this?” from Greens in the past…

    Kristina Keneally
    Here’s the shocking moment
    tried to stop
    recognising Pregnancy & Infant Loss Remembrance Day #October15

    It’s unbelievable anyone would try to stop acknowledging a day so important to families who have lost a baby through stillbirth, infant death or miscarriage’

    True to past tradition, I haven’t done a speck of research as to why the Greens didn’t vote for it, because apparently that’s acceptable practice.

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