Blog along as we cover the long Australian election campaign for 2016.
Table of contents
(May 12, 2016) Day 5 – Mal’s Panama Papers
Siberian gold mines and Mossack Fonseca
- Elise Worthington reported, “Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has denied any wrongdoing after his name was found in the massive Panama Papers database.”: Malcolm Turnbull denies any wrongdoing after being listed in Panama Papers.
- The Sydney Morning Herald reported, “Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull was once a director of an offshore company set up by Mossack Fonseca, data from the Panama Papers shows.”: Panama Papers: Malcolm Turnbull named.
- Neil Chenoweth reported, “Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is named in the Panama Papers as a former director of a British Virgin Islands company set up and administered by law firm Mossack Fonseca to exploit a Siberian gold prospect.”: Malcolm Turnbull named in Panama Papers.
Sniper Peta Credlin
- Mark Kenny reported, “Tony Abbott’s former chief of staff, Peta Credlin, has rounded on Malcolm Turnbull’s campaign team for appearing elitist after cancelling a planned street walk in Western Sydney on Wednesday following questions over last year’s leadership change.”: Peta Credlin questions campaign tactics of ‘Mr Harbourside Mansion’ Malcolm Turnbull.
- Gareth Hutchens wrote, “The Coalition should pull their socks up. And Labor should be ashamed. They’re blowing a rare opportunity to push a seriously good reform through parliament after the election.”: The superannuation changes are seriously good. The Coalition must fight for them.
- Michael Koziol reported, “Former prime minister Tony Abbott has changed his tune on what he once christened a “seniors’ tax” by endorsing the Turnbull government’s changes to superannuation.”: Tony Abbott falls into line on ‘gutsy’ superannuation reforms.
Christopher Pyne doesn’t think the government is in caretaker mode
Turnbull lunches at Gentlemens’ club
- Alice Workman reported, “BuzzFeed News has confirmed that prime minister Malcolm Turnbull has taken time out from campaigning to have lunch in Melbourne at the Athenaeum Club.”: Malcolm Turnbull took lunch at an exclusive men’s only “Gentlemen’s Club”.
Turnbull grilled by single Mum
- Melissa Davey reported, “One moment Malcolm Turnbull was touring the Marand engineering warehouse in Melbourne’s south-east suburbs, talking innovation and future-building with workers friendly to his message. But on the prime minister’s short walk from the warehouse to the car park, a woman who introduced herself to him as a single mother named Melinda bailed him up and grilled him on cuts to the family tax benefit.”: Malcolm Turnbull grilled by single mother on family tax benefit cuts.
- Heath Aston reported, “Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has had his first unscripted moment of the election campaign, confronted by a single mother worried about educational opportunities for her two sons.”: Malcolm Turnbull bailed up by mum ‘Melinda’ during first campaign encounter.
Townsville wants its stadium
- Guardian Australia reported, “The North Queensland Cowboys say their future in the NRL is under serious threat unless a new stadium is built in the Townsville CBD. “: Cowboys’ future under threat if reigning NRL premiers do not get new stadium.
Fiona Scott accuser quits Liberals
- Conor Duffy reported, “A Penrith Councillor who derailed Liberal campaigning in the key marginal seat of Lindsay by accusing MP Fiona Scott of stabbing Tony Abbott in the back has resigned from the party.”: Marcus Cornish resigns from Liberals after saying Fiona Scott betrayed Abbott.
PaTH interns plan illegal
- Paul Karp reported, “The government will need to pass legislation to exempt its new work experience scheme from the Fair Work Act or pay young jobseekers the minimum wage, unions lawyers have said.”: Union says youth intern scheme breaches the Fair Work Act.
- Mark Kenny reported, “A centrepiece of Malcolm Turnbull’s re-election platform, the budget’s PaTH interns program, breaches current minimum wage standards and would require changes that would either blow out its cost or see it stalled in a hostile Senate, according to employment law experts commissioned by the ACTU.”: Coalition’s $840 million interns plan illegal: lawyers.
Chris Brown disendorsement
- Latika Bourke reported, “The union official set be disendorsed from standing for the Labor party in West Australia could be kicked out of the party for failing to reveal historic criminal convictions during the preselection process.”: Dumped Fremantle candidate Chris Brown could be expelled from the Labor party.
- Paul Karp and Calla Wahlquist reported, “Labor will disendorse its candidate for Fremantle, the unionist Chris Brown, due to his failure to disclose convictions in the 1980s, according to reports.”: Labor to disendorse Fremantle candidate Chris Brown after failure to disclose convictions.
Syrian refugees to be banned from settling in Dawson
- Gabrielle Chan reported, “Malcolm Turnbull says the objective of the government’s Syrian refugee settlement program is to place people where there are opportunities to work, underlining LNP MP George Christensen’s opposition to settling the refugees in his Queensland region.”: Turnbull defends George Christensen’s opposition to Syrian refugees in Mackay.
- Michael Koziol reported, “Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has cautiously defended Nationals MP George Christensen’s opposition to resettling Syrian refugees in his electorate, agreeing it would be difficult to find them jobs. But Fairfax Media has learnt Mr Christensen was motivated less by employment prospects and more by an “urban myth” that claimed a local workers’ camp would be turned into a camp for refugees.”: ‘Urban myth’ behind George Christensen’s no refugees stance.
- Stephanie Anderson reported, “Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has defended comments made by LNP politician George Christensen, who claims to have ruled out refugees resettling in his Queensland seat.”: Malcolm Turnbull defends George Christensen’s comments refusing Syrian refugees in Mackay.
- Gabrielle Chan reported, “Government confirms LNP backbencher has been given an assurance that no refugees will be resettled in his electorate, while Labor candidate challenged to make same commitment.”: George Christensen tries to put pressure on Labor over Syrian refugee settlement.
- Immigration Minister Peter Dutton says he hasn’t spoken to George Christensen about the banning of Syrian refugees from settling in the Queensland seat of Dawson.
Mathias Cormann calls Bill Shorten a liar
- Gareth Hutchens reported, “The Coalition has accused Labor leader Bill Shorten of lying to Australians about the economic benefits of Labor’s multi-billion dollar school funding policy.”: Mathias Cormann accuses Bill Shorten of lying about schools funding plan.
(May 11, 2016) Day 4 – Saving Albo
The battle for Indi
- Wayne Jansson reported, “Last June when Sophie Mirabella (@MirabellaSophie) won Liberal Party preselection for the Federal seat of Indi, the much anticipated McGowan V’s Mirabella rematch was on and the unofficial campaign was off and running.”: Queen of Mean takes on Miss Congeniality and Indivotes braces for the onslaught.
Scott Morrison in a tangle in Tassie
- Mark Di Stefano reported, “Treasurer Scott Morrison has delivered one of the most headache-inducing political answers of all time, in response to a question about emissions reduction targets.”: We say what we mean, we mean what we say, we do what we say we’d do, in the way we say we’d do it.
Mackay with Bill
Prime Minister’s press management mock indigenous
- Mark Di Stefano reported, “Staffers from the prime minister’s office drank beers and were involved in an inside joke about “having a bender with the locals” during last year’s visit to an alcohol-restricted area.”: Prime Minister’s press manager caught in selfie mocking Indigenous alcohol problems.
Chris Bowen looks the part
- Michelle Grattan wrote, “Chris Bowen’s presented at the National Press Club on Tuesday as a well-prepared alternative treasurer, who could slot into the real job very easily if July 2 brought the chance.”: Aspiring treasurer Chris Bowen looks fit for purpose.
- Laura Tingle wrote, “It’s always a bit of a shock – particularly in election campaigns – when a politician actually just answers the question. It’s even more of a shock when he gives a considered and coherent answer.”: Chris Bowen shows how it is done.
Kelly O’Dwyer exaggerating
- ABC Fact Check reported, “Assistant Treasurer Kelly O’Dwyer says that Labor’s policy on negative gearing disadvantages average earners who rely on salaries or wages.”: Fact check: Do two-thirds of negative gearers earn under $80,000?
Delayed flood and cyclone funding
- Tony Moore reported, “Flood and cyclone-ravaged regions across Queensland want to know why the Turnbull government delayed $1.2 billion in natural disaster relief funding by two years in the budget.”: Regions plead for delayed natural disaster relief funding.
Lindsay with Mal
- Alice Workman reported, “The PM’s press team wanted to show a “different side of Penrith”, but instead the owners of the gallery used the visit to criticise the government about cuts to arts funding.”: Malcolm Turnbull hand picked an art gallery to visit but they didn’t want him there.
- Heath Aston reported, “Fiona Scott, the western Sydney Liberal MP once lauded by Tony Abbott for her “sex appeal”, has refused to confirm she switched allegiance to back Malcolm Turnbull in the bitter leadership spill last September.”: Fiona Scott hit with leadership questions during Malcolm Turnbull visit.
- Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has suggested that some Liberals may not be telling the truth about who they voted at the recent leadership spill: “Those party room ballots are secret ballots and they’re secret for a reason and so people can confidentially make a choice. Some people say how they vote, whether they’re saying, whether they’re telling the truth, who knows?”
- Neil Mitchell has clashed with Josh Frydenberg over superannuation changes: Neil Mitchell’s frustrating exchange with Josh Frydenberg about superannuation.
- Gareth Hutchens reported, “Malcolm Turnbull has set the Coalition up for a head-on collision with the Institute of Public Affairs in the first week of the election campaign by refusing to back down from his proposed super reforms.”: Malcolm Turnbull takes on Institute of Public Affairs over superannuation changes.
- Peta Donald and Jane Norman reported, “The Federal Government is standing by its superannuation overhaul amid warnings from supporters, including the Institute for Public Affairs (IPA), that anger among Liberal members is “white hot”.”: Federal Government stands by proposed superannuation changes.
- Andrew Probyn reported, “The Turnbull Government appears to be giving itself some wriggle room on its superannuation changes, after Julie Bishop suggested changes could be made to deal with “unintended consequences”.”: Julie Bishop hints at superannuation backflip to quell unrest.
Tele wants to save Albo
(May 10, 2016) Day 3 – Pies and Toast
I stand with Duncan Storrar
- Wendy Harmer interviewed Duncan Storrar after his appearance on Q and A: Duncan Storrar on his now famous #QandA question on tax cuts for the rich.
- Latika Bourke reported, “A leaked email sent to Liberal Party supporters in Canberra and in the neighbouring NSW seat of Eden-Monaro suggests some Coalition supporters want Peter Hendy to lose his seat because of his role in plotting to remove former Prime Minster Tony Abbott.”: Leaked email suggests some Liberals want Peter Hendy to lose bellwether seat.
Townsville with Bill
- Matthew Knott reported, “Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has been forced to deny his party is disunited on the issue of boat arrivals for the second day in a row after a photo emerged of the Labor candidate for a marginal seat at an asylum seeker protest.”: Labor candidate Cathy O’Toole hit by questions over old protest photo.
Tony Abbott joins George Christensen in Qld
- James Massola reported, “He cut a solitary figure on day one of the federal election campaign, but Tony Abbott will soon jet to sunny Queensland to campaign with fellow backbencher George Christensen.”: Tony Abbott joins George Christensen on campaign in Mackay, Queensland.
Disaster funding lacking for Qld
Campaigning in Forde
- Tony Moore reported, “Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has made no election promises for Queensland, despite being in the state for the opening two days of the campaign.”: Turnbull makes no promises for Queensland in early days.
- No deal with The Greens?
- Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has reiterated that if you want people to do less of something, you raise taxes.
Lenore Taylor asks Turnbull about the Mitre 10 franchisee
- Lenore Taylor recorded a Mitre 10 franchisee in Forde on what he might do with a tax cut.
- Lenore Taylor puts the Mitre 10 franchisee’s answers to Malcolm Turnbull.
Kelly O’Dwyer says we need to grow the pie and make more toast
- Marissa Calligeros reported, “It was the throwaway line that had a national audience asking “a $6000 what?” Well, it was a toaster. Yes, a $6000 toaster.”: We found it: Kelly O’Dwyer’s Q&A $6000 toaster.
- Assistant Treasurer Kelly O’Dwyer has used some interesting examples to explain how the government is helping low income earners.
(May 9, 2016) Day 2 – Battleground Queensland
Sex appeal splits Lindsay
- Conor Duffy reported, “Fiona Scott only got in because Tony Abbott came out here on many visits and he made the ‘sex appeal’ comment,” Marcus Cornish, a local Liberal Party member and independent councillor, told 7.30.”: Betrayal claim against ‘sex appeal’ MP splits Liberal campaign in crucial seat of Lindsay.
Asset sales on agenda
- LNP MP for Petrie, Luke Howarth, has let slip in front of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull that Queensland will need to sell assets in exchange for promised infrastructure.
Hitting Queensland hard
- Nancy Notzon reported, “The fight is on for the Federal Government to maintain control of its seats in north Queensland as the election campaign officially begins.”: Election 2016: Herbert candidates tout plans to drive jobs, development.
- Peta Donald reported, “Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten will both campaign in Queensland today, on the first full day of the marathon eight-week federal election campaign.”: Election 2016: Malcolm Turnbull, Bill Shorten take on first campaign day in Queensland.
- Amy Remeikis reported, “In a federal election all about the numbers, Queensland is shaping up as the winning equation both sides want to solve.”: Federal election 2016: Queensland vital to federal election result.
Return of Dennis Jensen
- Rebecca Carmody and Anthony Stewart reported, “Discarded Liberal MP Dennis Jensen has announced he will contest the West Australian seat of Tangney as an independent candidate at the federal election.”: Election 2016: Dumped Liberal MP Dennis Jensen to run as independent in Tangney.
Mal’s jobs and growth
- Paul Karp reported, “Malcolm Turnbull has targeted Labor for what he called its “shameful” opposition to the government’s plan to pay young unemployed people $100 a week on top of the dole to do 25 hours of work experience.”: Turnbull targets Labor’s ‘shameful’ opposition to youth work experience plan.
Scott Morrison gets into the jobs and growth mantra
The Shorten trip to Cairns
The polls, the polls
- Mark Kenny reported, “The government goes into the campaign proper, level pegging with an opposition that as recently as a few months ago was not even in the hunt. With a wafer-thin lead of 51-49 in the latest Fairfax-Ipsos poll – or 50-50 if voter preferences are taken into account – the result cannot be predicted.”: Federal election 2016: Malcolm Turnbull pulls the trigger for winter showdown on July 2.
Mathias Cormann programmed for jobs and growth
- Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has told ABC radio that the election is about jobs and growth. He mentioned that three word slogan eight times: ‘Labor doesn’t have a plan for the economy’: Finance Minister.
Tony Abbott campaigning at Manly Wharf
- Tom McIlroy reported, “If a week is a long time in politics, former prime minister Tony Abbott might have started the federal election campaign thinking eight weeks is an eternity”: Former prime minister Tony Abbott cuts a lonely figure on campaign day one.
- Melissa Maddison reported, “Mr Christensen said he had asked two former prime ministers to help secure support. “Tony Abbott to me is a respected former prime minister. He’s actually going to be here later this week meeting with sugarcane growers and a bunch of local supporters,” he said.”: Election 2016: Dawson MP seeks support of ex-PMs in securing third term.
Spare a fiddy for Mal?
(May 8, 2016) Day 1 – To the Governor-General
NSW Premier Mike Baird
- A glum NSW Premier Mike Baird has endorsed Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
Sir Peter Cosgrove meets with republican Malcolm Turnbull
- An amazing situation for life long republican Malcolm Turnbull to visit Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove to request Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth grant Australia the right to vote.
Pit stop politics
- According to the ABC, the Prime Minister has been in and out of the Governor-General’s residence twice. We thought this amounted to pit stops but it appears the commentary was way off. Check out the vids, 1 and 2.
AEC reports low young people enrolment
ABC misses live money shot
- The ABC has missed the live money shot of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull entering the gates of the Governor-General’s residence to call for an election. The official reason is they lost the feed but did the ABC newsroom fall asleep listening to Chris Uhlmann prattle on along with the rest of the nation?
ABC election coverage up
- “The longest election race in almost 50 years is shaping up as a deeply personal battle between two men who have never led their parties to a poll”: Federal Election 2016.
Media awaits Malcolm Turnbull to arrive in Canberra
Premature erection problems
- Nick Xenophon has appeared in front of a Liberal Party election banner in South Australia. It has been revealed that by putting up election signs before the election has been called, Christopher Pyne has breached the Local Government Association of South Australia guidelines on campaign signage.