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Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s National Cabinet Press Conference: An Evolving Federation

Prime Minister Scott Morrison held a press conference in Canberra today, following a video meeting of the National Cabinet.

In a statement that was both declarative and inspecific, Morrison said that the National Cabinet sought to find a way through the pandemic lockdowns to opening up the economy. “So, we agreed today seven out of eight states and territories, we agreed that before you know what you’re going to do, you’ve got to agree about where you want to get to. And we agreed today with the objective that was set out in the May plan to be at the end of that step three process, which we will seek to ensure is even better defined.”

Morrison also the National Cabinet had to evolve. “So, we’ve decided that this notion of 100 percent, absolute consensus on any issue is not a way that the National Cabinet can indeed work. And so what we will do is we will set out areas where we can come together, and get as many states and territories as possible to come around that agreement. Not everyone has to get on the bus for the bus to leave the station. But it is important the bus leaves the station, and we all agree on that. We all agree on that. Even when, on occasions, some might not want to get on, they know we need to keep moving forward and that is supported, and that’s what we agreed to do today. And I think that is a change in the way our Federation works.”

The National Cabinet is still grappling with the definition of a pandemic “hotspot”. The states have indicated they will not budge on their previous decisions on closing border crossings.

Watch Morrison’s press conference (46m):

Listen to Morrison’s press conference (46m):

Transcript of press conference with Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Acting Chief Medical Officer Professor Paul Kelly.

PRIME MINISTER SCOTT MORRISON: Good afternoon. Australia is something we can never take for granted. And I’m not talking about Uluru or the Great Barrier Reef or the Opera House or the great wilderness across our country, I’m talking about us. I’m talking about our Federation. I’m talking about who we are as a nation. And in every generation, we must continue to define who we are, how we make Australia work, what we hope to achieve, how we protect it, how we make it stronger. And our Federation, some almost 120 years later, remains a happy work in progress. Sometimes it doesn’t feel that happy, but I tell you, the goal is one that I think all Australians would share and that’s what brings a smile to our face when we think of Australia. Not just the place, as wonderful it is, but how we make Australia work. And that is the task of all of those who come and meet in this place, in our Federal Parliament, but it is also the job of all of those who come together in our state parliaments, those who form governments and seek to work together in the ways that our Federation intended. [Read more…]


Kevin Rudd Interview On Sky News Australian Agenda

As speculation about the Labor leadership grows, Kevin Rudd has given an extensive interview to Sky News.

Rudd

The interview with Paul Kelly and Peter van Onselen caps off a week in which Rudd significantly lifted his media profile. [Read more…]


1980 Cabinet Papers Released

The 1980 Cabinet Papers of the Fraser Government have been released by the National Archives of Australia.

The Liberal/National Party coalition government was in its fifth year in office. It won its third and final election on October 18.

The Fourth Fraser Ministry after being sworn in by the Governor-General, Sir Zelman Cowan

The Cabinet papers are released under the 30-year-rule. This has now been reduced to 20 years, to be phased in over the next ten years with two years of documents to be released each year. Because of the workload involved in the releases, Cabinet documents from 1981 will be released periodically during 2011. [Read more…]


2007 Federal Election: Brave Predictions

This is a collection of media commentary during 2007 in which the writers make predictions about the federal election.

Judge for yourself how well they did…

Recycled, Rejected And Right Off The Rails

Yesterday, in the nation’s Parliament, with hardly a politician to be seen anywhere, we got some election realism. Three rows of recycling bins, whacking big green ones with yellow lids. More than 300 of them. Where? In the basement corridor of the ministerial wing. The bins seemed a more apt commentary than all the desperate, last-minute Coalition windbaggery going on around the nation on what is about to descend on the Prime Minister after 33 years in public life and almost 12 years remaking Australia in his own miserable, disfigured image. They arrived two days ago and whoever they’re for, 48 hours before a single vote is cast today, you felt [Read more…]


Quotes From The 2001 Federal Election

This page provides a collection of extended quotations gathered during the 2001 Federal Election campaign.

The quotes cover the campaign period and the election’s aftermath.


How A Single-Issue Party Held Onto Power

We shall never know for certain that the Tampa would have been, by itself, sufficient to ensure the Howard Government a third term or whether it was the combination of the Tampa “crisis” and September 11 that the Howard Government required. What we do know, however, is that when the now retired Defence Minister, Peter Reith, suggested that al-Qaeda terrorists might be found among the Afghan and Iraqi asylum seekers on the leaky vessels travelling to Australia, a politically decisive connection between border control and the terrorist threat to Australia was conjured in the public’s mind. [Read more…]


John Howard Takes Liberal Leadership As Andrew Peacock Miscalculates

John Howard became leader of the Liberal Party for the first time at a bizarre meeting of the parliamentary party called to remove him as deputy leader.

The party meeting was called by leader Andrew Peacock in an attempt to remove Howard from the deputy leadership. Peacock had demanded an assurance from Howard that he would not challenge for the leadership but Howard refused to give one.

A contest between Howard and John Moore saw Howard re-elected deputy leader by 38 votes to 31. Peacock then resigned and Howard was elected leader, defeating Jim Carlton by 57 votes to 6. Neil Brown became deputy leader. [Read more…]