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John Howard’s Speech to the NSW State Convention of the Liberal Party

This is the text of Prime Minister John Howard’s speech to the NSW Convention of the Liberal Party.

Text of John Howard’s speech to the NSW Convention of the Liberal Party.

John HowardThank you very much Michael for those very warm words of introduction. To Shane Stone the Federal President, Kerry Chikarovski, the Leader of the New South Wales Opposition, to my many ministerial and parliamentary colleagues and most importantly of all my fellow members of the New South Wales Division of the Liberal Party.

Not surprisingly I would like to share with you this morning some thoughts on the past year and also some ideas about the year ahead at a national political level. But I would like to start my remarks this morning by addressing an issue that is very important to the future strength and survival of the New South Wales Division.

I want to congratulate the Executive of the party here in New South Wales for the decision it took last night to establish a committee of management to run the affairs of this party in the months ahead. [Read more…]

Kennett Set To Quit Parliament: By-Election Battle Looms

Shot himself in the foot?Former Victorian Premier, Jeff Kennett, is set to quit parliament.

The Australian reports today that Kennett has decided not to stay in Parliament since his defeat last week.

The resignation could come as early as today, ensuring that Kennett will not sit in the new Parliament when it meets for the first time next Wednesday.

The Liberal Party holds Kennett’s seat of Burwood with a margin of 6.79% and the new Labor government will be keen to consolidate its precarious hold on government with a by-election victory. Expect a big-name, high-profile candidate to be preselected.

Meanwhile, Kennett and his supporters, including party president Joy Howley, have already annointed Helen Kroger, the ex-wife of former Victorian party president, Michael Kroger, as the Liberal Party’s candidate for Burwood.

In a deliciously mischievous move, the attempt to propel Ms. Kroger into Burwood seems designed to pre-empt moves by the Kroger-Costello faction to find their own candidate. Ms. Kroger apparently remains close to Costello.

I’ve Never Met a Labor Voter: Felicity Kennett

The wife of former Victorian Premier, Jeff Kennett, is reported in today’s Sunday Herald-Sun as saying “I still haven’t met anyone who says they voted Labor” in the recent State election.

Mrs. Kennett also says that she believes the ALP outsmarted her husband by successfully marketing the word “arrogant” to describe the former Premier who was tipped out of office last week. “He was the best Premier Victoria ever had,” Mrs. Kennett said.

The Murdoch-owned newspaper also reports today that Kennett was on the verge of advising the Governor, Sir James Gobbo, to swear in his government on October 1 for a new term until Mildura independent, Russell Savage, rang the Governor’s official secretary, Charles Curwen. An hour later, Kennett rang Savage to say he had changed his mind, the paper says.

Savage claims Kennett told him he had the support of Gippsland East independent, Craig Ingram. All three independents announced their support for the formation of a minority government a week ago.

The Age today publishes a story about the fight over water in Gippsland that led to the defeat of the local National Party member and the election of the Bracks government.

Labor Government Takes Office in Victoria

Victorian Labor Premier, Steve BracksA minority Labor government headed by Steve Bracks was sworn into office just before noon on Wednesday, marking the end of 7 years and 14 days of coalition government under Jeff Kennett.

The new government has 42 seats in the Legislative Assembly and will be supported by the 3 Independent members of parliament. The new Liberal/National Party Opposition will have 43 seats.

The Labor Government will not control the Legislative Council, where the coalition parties hold 30 seats to Labor’s 14.

Bracks will head the first Labor adminstration in Victoria since Joan Kirner was defeated by Kennett in October 1992. Kirner succeeded John Cain, who had brought the ALP to office after 27 years in Opposition.


Former Victorian Premier Jeff KennettJeff Kennett has resigned as Victorian Premier. Steve Bracks will be sworn in at 11.30 on Wednesday morning as Victoria’s first Labor Premier since 1992.

Kennett visited the Governor, Sir James Gobbo, at 4pm on Tuesday to tender his resignation. Labor leader Steve Bracks visited the Governor shortly afterwards.

At a brief press conference later, Kennett claimed the new government had no mandate and attacked the three independent members of parliament who delivered government to the ALP.

Kennett will also resign as Liberal Party leader on Tuesday 26 October. It is expected that Dr. Denis Napthine, the newly-elected deputy leader, will succeed Kennett, although other candidates may emerge in coming days.

Jeff Kennett Responds To Independents’ Decision To Support A Labor Government

This is Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett’s press conference, following the decision of the three independents to support a Bracks Labor government in the hung parliament.

Kennett accepted the decision of Russell Savage, Craig Ingram and Susan Davies. He tendered his resignation to the Governor and Bracks was sworn in as Premier on October 20. [Read more…]

Historic Decision: Independents To Support Labor in Victoria

11.20am – The 3 Independents in the Victorian Legislative Assembly have announced that they will support the formation of a minority Labor government. Details to follow.

Attention will now focus on whether the caretaker Premier, Jeff Kennett, will resign immediately, or whether he will insist on the opportunity to test his support in Parliament, perhaps as early as next week.

It is understood that the Opposition Leader, Steve Bracks, will seek an appointment with the Governor, Sir James Gobbo, this afternoon. [Read more…]

Media Tipping a Labor Government in Victoria

Steve BracksThe Melbourne media is confidently predicting a change of government in Victoria.

The Age says the three Independent members of parliament are set to choose Labor ahead of the Kennett-led coalition.

The newspapers predict an early recall of State Parliament, perhaps next Tuesday 26 October, and the retirement of Jeff Kennett. The Liberal Party Deputy Leader, Dr. Denis Napthine, is expected to be the new leader of the Liberal Party.

The Independent members appear to be sceptical of Premier Kennett’s undertakings to implement their Charter.

Controversy over the possible filming of the Independents voting out the government in Parliament is being cited as a further reason for the Independents to support Labor. Threats to use the footage in campaign advertising have been condemned by the member for Mildura, Russell Savage.

ALP Wins Frankston East; Fate of Kennett Government Known on Monday

A major swing of around 8% has delivered the seat of Frankston East to the ALP. Victory for the ALP gives it 42 seats in the Victorian Legislative Assembly, the coalition 43, and Independents 3.

Attention now turns to the formation of a minority Coalition or Labor government. The Kennett government needs the support of two independents, whilst the ALP would require all three. [Read more…]

Jeff Kennett Press Conference In Response To Independents’ Charter

This is the full text of the press conference held to present the coalition’s response to the Charter of Demands presented by the 3 Independent members of the Legislative Assembly.

Transcript of Victorian coalition leader’s press conference.


  • JEFF KENNETT, Premier of Victoria
  • MARK BIRRELL, Minister for Industry, Science & Technology, Government Leader in the Upper House
  • PAT McNAMARA, Deputy Premier, Minister for Agriculture and Resources
  • GEOFF CRAIGE, Minister for Decentralisation, Minister for Business & Employment

JEFF KENNETT: All right. Well, thank you very much. We are officially releasing the Coalition’s response to the Independents’ Charter this morning. Can I just make the point we’re releasing it now, because during the discussions we had with the Independents, they requested that we give them time to consider the document before we released it publicly. And we have honoured that undertaking. [Read more…]