Thursday, November 24, 2011

Labor gives Abbott the slipper

Interesting times just on present on the Australian political scene. Today we saw the Labor Party speaker of the House of Representatives resign to return to the cut and thrust of Labor politics. He was replaced by Liberal, now ex-Liberal, Peter Slipper giving the Government an effective extra vote in a hung Parliament.

Slipper, Abbott I watched all this unfold with great interest. To say that the Opposition was displeased would be an understatement. Deputy Opposition Leader Julie Bishop's face resembled a prune on the news.

The photo from the ABC shows Opposition Leader Abbott passing in front of the new speaker. The body language says it all!

The high political drama of the day dominated the news. However, from my perspective the practical effect is uncertain since I was already expecting the Government to survive. It does strengthen its position, however, and has certainly ignited hope among Labor supporters who had become very dispirited.

Of more importance was the passage of the Minerals Resource Rent Tax through the Parliament. I say this only because I expect this tax to trigger events that are likely to have a much bigger political and public policy impact.

I am too tired tonight to spell this out, but will return to the issue in the morning. 

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