Shorten Announces Minor Changes To Shadow Ministry; O’Neill Promoted

The Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten, has announced changes to the ALP shadow ministry, following the resignation of Senator Sam Dastyari.

HammondThe new member for Perth, Tim Hammond (pictured), has become Shadow Minister for Consumer Affairs and enters the Shadow Outer Ministry in place of Dastyari. Hammond will continue as the Shadow Minister Assisting for Resources but his Digital Economy and Startups position has been abolished.

O'NeillNSW Right Senator Deborah O’Neill (pictured) will become a shadow parliamentary secretary, as Shadow Assistant Minister for Mental Health and Shadow Assistant Minister for Innovation.

Senator Katy Gallagher becomes Manager of Opposition in the Senate, a role also previously held by Dastyari. She retains her position as Shadow Minister for Small Business and Financial Services.

The 48-member executive includes 22 members in the Shadow Cabinet, 10 in the Shadow Outer Ministry and 16 Shadow Assistant Ministers (Parliamentary Secretaries). The total Caucus numbers are not yet final but are likely to be around 95 members. About half of the Caucus will be members of the shadow executive. [Read more…]


Shorten And Bandt Introduce Bills To Legalise Same-Sex Marriage

The Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten, has introduced a private member’s bill into the House of Representatives to legaliste same-sex marriage.

The Greens member, Adam Bandt, also introduced a bill to achieve the same change.

Each man made a brief speech to introduce the bill. The debate was then adjourned. Video, audio and text of the speeches appears below. [Read more…]


Dastyari Resigns From ALP Frontbench

Senator Sam Dastyari has resigned from the ALP frontbench.

Dastyari

  • Listen to Dastyari’s resignation statement (3m):

The resignation comes a day after an embarrassing press conference over Dastyari’s solicitation of a payment of an electorate office bill from Top Education Institute, a Chinese-connected company and ALP donor.

Dastyari was Shadow Minister for Consumer Affairs and Manager of Opposition Business in the Senate. [Read more…]


How The Turnbull Government Lost Control Of The House

The absence of nine members of the Coalition caused the Turnbull government to lose control of the House of Representatives for nearly two hours last night.

House

When a procedural motion to adjourn the House was put at 5.00pm, the ALP surprisingly voted No and called for a division, which it won by 69 votes to 67. The ALP then took control of the proceedings of the House and initiated a debate on a Senate resolution calling for a royal commission into the banking system.

Over the next 45 minutes, the government lost two more divisions and did not regain control of the House until 6.50pm, after coalition MPs were brought back into the chamber.

It was the first time since 1962 that a majority government has lost votes in the House of Representatives. Like the Turnbull government, the then Menzies government also governed with a one-seat majority. [Read more…]


Current Federal Parliamentary Leaders

Each political party represented in the Federal Parliament elects leaders in each house.

Just as the government is decided in the House of Representatives, so the parties elect their leaders and deputy leaders from amongst their representatives in the House. If the party is not represented in the lower house, its leader will be chosen from amongst its members in the Senate.

These tables are correct as of the first day of the 45th Parliament, August 30, 2016. The Liberal, Nationals and ALP positions are unchanged from those that applied immediately prior to the July 2 double dissolution election. Senate parties with more than one senator have been included for the first time. [Read more…]


Bill Shorten Address To The National Press Club

The Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten, has delivered his first major speech since the election, addressing the National Press Club, in Canberra.

Shorten

Shorten maintained his attack on the Turnbull government, reiterated his commitment to defending Medicare, and outlined some Budget measures for the government to consider. [Read more…]


MPs Who Won Their Seats On First Preferences In The 2016 Federal Election

Just under a third of the seats in the House of Representatives were decided on first preference (primary) votes at the 2016 Federal Election.

By definition, these seats are the most secure for the various parties, since preference distribution cannot change the result. The winner has already secured an absolute majority of at least 50%+1 over every other candidate.

Of the 150 electorates, 48 (32%) were won on the primary vote. There were 53 such seats (35%) at the 2013 election. In 2004, 89 seats (59%) were decided on first preferences.

The Liberal Party was most successful, winning 27 of the 48 seats (56%), including 12 in NSW. The Liberal wins covered 4 states.

The Nationals won 5 seats (10%), including 3 in NSW, giving the coalition 32, or 67% of the total.

The ALP won 16 (33%) of the seats, including 10 in NSW. It won 6 seats in Victoria, but failed to win any more in other states or territories.

Seats Won On Primary Votes – 2016 Federal Election
Party NSW Vic Qld WA Total
Liberal Party
12
8
4
3
27
The Nationals
3
2
5
Australian Labor Party
10
6
16
TOTAL
25
16
4
3
48

 
NSW was the only state to have a majority of seats (25 of 47, or 53%) won on primary votes. In Victoria, 16 seats out of 37 (43%) were won on first preferences. Western Australia recorded 19% and Queensland 13%.

The two smallest states, South Australia and Tasmania, had no seats decided on primaries. The four seats in the two territories all went to preferences. [Read more…]