Anthony Albanese To Run Again In Grayndler

Anthony Albanese has announced that he will run again in his Sydney electorate of Grayndler

The proposed redistribution of NSW electoral boundaries led to speculation that Albanese might contest Barton but final changes have improved the ALP’s margin in Grayndler. The ABC’s Antony Green has calculated the new margin as 18.1% in the ALP’s favour.

Albanese has held Grayndler since 1996. A safe Labor seat, it was created in 1949 and has been represented by Fred Daly (1949-75), Tony Whitlam (1975-77), Frank Stewart (1977-79), Leo McLeay (1979-93) and Jeannette McHugh (1993-96).

  • Watch Albanese interviewed on the ABC (11m)

Statement by Anthony Albanese.

Albanese to nominate for Grayndler

I will be nominating for preselection to contest the next federal election as the Labor Candidate for Grayndler. [Read more…]


On This Day In 1966: Menzies Retires, Holt Government Takes Office

Having announced his retirement on January 20, Sir Robert Menzies officially departed the prime ministership on this day in 1966. Harold Holt’s first ministry was sworn in at the same time.

It was a historic moment 50 years ago that brought to an end the political career of Australia’s longest-serving prime minister. Menzies had been Prime Minister for two years between April 1939 and August 1941. He formed the Liberal Party in 1944 and served for six years as Opposition Leader before defeating the Chifley Labor government in December 1949.

Menzies went on to win six more elections in 1951, 1954, 1955, 1958, 1961 and 1963. When he retired, he had been prime minister for 16 years and 5 weeks.

Holt

Harold Holt took office at the age of 57 with a ministerial career that had started 26 years earlier. He had first served under Menzies in 1940 and had been Treasurer since 1958. [Read more…]


Tony Abbott To Stand Again In Warringah

The former prime minister, Tony Abbott, has announced that he will renominate for preselection in his safe NSW seat of Warringah.

After four months of speculation about whether he will stay in parliament, Abbott has made it clear that he still holds hope of a recall to the Liberal Party leadership.

In a statement released tonight, Abbott said he had been “heartened by the support and encouragement I’ve received to continue to serve the country as a member of parliament”. [Read more…]


Melissa Parke To Retire From Parliament At Next Election

Melissa Parke, the Labor member for Fremantle, has announced that she will retire from Parliament at this year’s federal election.

ParkeParke has held the safe Labor seat for three terms since 2007.

Her winning margin in Fremantle in 2013 was 4.77%. It was 5.70% in 2010 and 9.14% in 2007. The just-completed redistribution of Western Australian electoral boundaries has the notional margin on 5.9%.

In her announcement, Parke said: “It is time for me to be closer to my family and to travel less.”

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten described Parke as an “unstinting champion for human rights, international development and social justice” and thanked her for her “years of dedicated service”. He said: “Melissa can be particularly proud that as Minister for International Development, she appointed Australia’s first Ambassador for Disability and Inclusive Development, with the goal of empowering people in some of the world’s poorest nations.” [Read more…]


UK Labour Election Report Released

This is the text of the report into the UK Labour Party’s 2015 election defeat.

The report, titled Learning the Lessons From Defeat, was compiled by Margaret Beckett, a former minister in the Blair and Brown governments.

Beckett held the post of Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs between 2006 and 2007. She was a member of the House of Commons from 1974 until 1979, and has been the Labour member for Derby South since 1983.



Australia Institute Proposes Capital Gains Tax On Home Worth More Than $2 Million

The Australia Institute says capital gains tax exemptions on homes worth over $2 million are costing the federal budget billions of dollars.

Capital gains tax is not payable on the sale of the main residence. The Treasury says this costs the budget $46 billion each financial year.

The Australia Institute report proposes scaling back capital gains tax exemptions for homes worth more than $2 million. It says this would raise $12 billion over four years.

The Institute, a progressive think tank, says the proposal should be considered because it costs more than the federal government spends on defence ($26.3bn), education ($31.9bn) or Medicare ($21.1bn).

The report was prepared by the institute’s senior economist, Matt Grudnoff.

The report is shown below. It can be expanded and downloaded.



Reserve Bank Leaves Interest Rates On Hold; Cash Rate Stays At 2%

At its final meeting for the year, the board of the Reserve Bank of Australia has decided to leave interest rates on hold.

The cash rate remains at 2%, where it has been since May 2015.

Statement from Glenn Stevens, Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia.

Statement by Glenn Stevens, Governor: Monetary Policy Decision

At its meeting today, the Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 2.0 per cent.

The global economy is expanding at a moderate pace, with some softening in conditions in the Asian region, continuing US growth and a recovery in Europe. Key commodity prices are much lower than a year ago, reflecting increased supply, including from Australia, as well as weaker demand. Australia’s terms of trade are falling. [Read more…]