Credlin & Keneally
Australia last edited by
Credlin and Keneally: 5 November 2017
Peta Credlin: Good evening and welcome to Credlin and Keneally. I'm Peta Credlin
Kristina Keneally: And I'm Kristina Keneally.
PC: Well, we've had an interesting development in what has otherwise been a fairly uneventful couple of sitting weeks in the federal Parliament. The Government has put forward legislation to finalise the Master Plan for Higher Education into the Senate, and we had Senate Estimates last week. We've seen the High Court show its authority over the Native Title Court as well with a challenge by mining magnate and One Nation MP Andrew "Twiggy" Kligenberg, striking down a previous ruling that mining companies must both pay for rights to mining and fork over some profits on aboriginal land.
KK: A rubbish ruling if you ask me....
PC: Oh, Kristina! We haven't even gotten out the Government's plan for unifying public hospitals under the federal government falling short within the party room, so it's being scrapped for the standard left message of "securing Medicare with more funds and promoting harmonisation between the states and territories". News flash...they're already harmonised.
KK: Well, that is true. I think Mrs. Clinton wanted to have the data and profiles for patient care harmonised across Australia, and in a way she's right. The Medicare Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme has proven effective. The 2% levy on income has paid for the programme full-stop, and it has allowed people who need prescriptions across the country to have free access to them with a prescription.
PC: It's going to be a cracker of an episode, and the first topic we have up is the Government and its economic management.
KK: 1) Is Clinton solidifying consensus behind liberal economic values across the political spectrum?
PC: This is a good question. The Prime Minister has largely continued the ideas of the National Party's previous government in terms of economic growth and stability. Unlike the Labor Party, this Government in the hands of Hillary Clinton and Treasurer Jim Chalmers have decided to cut corporation tax, which will be announced in the new November budget. That's another reform, actually, that the Government is doing. They are putting out a budget a couple of weeks after Senate Estimates, which means that the May budget is dead. May will now be the economic forecast and a kind of a mini budget. Particularly since the fiscal year begins in April, so announcing the next year's budget in Q3 makes sense.
KK: I think she is showing a lot of prudence. The faction of the Labor Party that I come from, the New South Wales Right governed the state with a strong sense of keeping taxes under control, promoting small businesses and fighting for equality in the workplace and better outcomes for workers. The Progressive Alliance very much fits in that mould of economic governance, and the more left federal Labor Party joining them in government definitely raised eyebrows. I would have thought that when forming a coalition, the Progressives would have snagged the ACP (Australian Centre Party) as a formal partner. Yes, there would have been less MPs on the Government side, but they could have secured a confidence and supply deal with federal Labor. I doubt Kevin Rudd would have preferred a Tony Abbot-Pauline Hanson minority Government that would have still been a minority government and would have sent everyone back to an election if the budget failed...
PC: I'm not so sure about that. NIck Xenophon, the former leader at the ACP, was a deal maker and his policies lined up a little closer to the National Party than to the Progressives, and certainly far from the Labor Party. I think the Progressives wanted to unite the left and moderate its tendencies, which could mean that the Gillard-Plibersek led Labor Left would fall out of favour and open the door for the Bill Shortens and Kevin Rudds of the world to tighten their grip on the Labor Party. It's a smart move by Clinton because she is both co-opting the Labor Right while trying to expand her party's base and appeal to Labor voters, turning them into solid Progressive voters for later decades.
KK: Peta...does that mean you're starting to back Clinton?
PC: As much as she has stolen Malcolm Turnbull's playbook of economic management, no. I still think that Hillary Clinton is shady and I think her social agenda is wrong for Australia, but her economic management is not to be messed with. I think the current Government would get returned at the next federal election, and if I were Clinton, I'd be eyeing next year for a snap general election to increase her party's numbers and get more latitude to potentially form a minority government with only confidence and supply from Labor. That would allow her to totally run Australia as how she wants, and not be beholden to the left-wing of the Labor Party. Hopefully, though, the Contract with Australia cuts through.
KK: And that comment leads us to our next segment. 2) Does the Contract with Australia signal a lurch to the left of the National Party?
PC: Yes. Though there are several conservative ideas in there that I think will offer a good picture of an alternative Government-in-waiting.
KK: Oh, come on...
PC: Yes, Kristina! Now, I know you are in love with Hillary Clinton's policies right now and are 100% behind the Progressive-Labor coalition. However, A solid 46% of voters wanted the right to be in charge of Australia. The Progressives and Labor put together are at 49%, if we go by the numbers of the last federal election, which ostensibly means that if we took out swing voters that went to the Government, there's about 45-46%. It's closer than the polls suggest. Yes, the Progressives are up 36-28 right now, and yes Labor is solid at 19%. But I think the National Party and One Nation are making key inroads in the cities, where the Progressives are strong and this Contract is the basis on which they can go to the metropolitan areas of the country and say "we can make your life better than Clinton".
KK: But can they, and is there an appetite for social conservatism? As you already said, the Government right now is managing the economy well. They're innovating, getting more capital out there for small business via the Public-Private Investment Bank, she's providing for more investment in infrastructure and encouraging states and other entities to do so with the Public Investment Bank. She's unlocked $500 billion of capital between the two that will allow for the economy to grow. The Prime Minister and the Government have done so much to help the middle class.
PC: They also put out a controversial Native Title Court that has now polarised the indigenous Australians by coming to a ruling that the Indigenous Advisory Council did not endorse, then it polarised regional Australia and the middle class with the same Native Title Court with the same ruling. That's a huge slice of the Progressive and Labor core that seemed irritated with this.
KK: Okay, and Malcolm Turnbull irritated his supporters by continuing the spend money on the NBN Co. even though the ALP under Rudd-Gillard came up with the idea. Doesn't mean that the idea wasn't right to act on in the first place.
PC: Kristina, you can say that all you want but Malcolm Turnbull never alienated people like this. Yes, I know he was a one term Prime Minister, second in a row which is rare. But this is a special time. People are more likely to react strongly to a negative news cycle now and the polls are not the end all be all. The people I've talked to as an adviser to the Leader of the Opposition have been strongly supporting Tony Abbott's opposition to Hillary Clinton. Let's not even get into the scandal with the emails. I don't think we've heard the last of that.
KK: Now it's the emails. You know, Peta. I'd tell you not to peddle right-wing conspiracy theories about the Prime Minister, but then I realise that's your job as Tony Abbott's man in the media.
PC: Ah! There we go! See if you can spot the lefty loonie in the room! Accusing people of conspiracy theories when the facts and truth don't go there way.
KK: The truth is that Hillary Clinton is Prime Minister and she'll continue to be Prime Minister for at least a second term, she'll be the longest serving Prime Minister since John Howard and the right of Australia will have to come to terms with the fact that this brand of economic centrism and social liberalism is a potent combination for years to come and they'll have to come back to the centre....
PC: And with that, we'll take a short break.
Australia last edited by
8 April 2018
Election Week 1 Round-Up Edition
Credlin: Good evening and welcome to the only Australian political show where two real pillars of the left and right. I'm Peta Credlin and I'm joined in our Melbourne studio by Kristina Keneally, former Labor Premier of New South Wales. We're in election fever, aren't we? Angleter, Australia, the devolved Irish Parliament had an election last week that had your Irish comrades put into power for the first time as a majority partner in a coalition in the near 100 year history of Irish devolution.
Keneally: Yes, it's been an exciting one. Let's start closer to home with the federal election here in Australia.
Credlin: Number One; the Progressive Alliance is going to use this as its chance to either take down or absorb Labor. Listen, I know you are gal pals with the Prime Minister, but Hillary Clinton has her eyes SET on either the complete take over or take down of the Australian Labor Party. Polling shows that she is in a position to potentially form at the very least minority government. What do you think about that?
Keneally: I don't think she will be able to do that. The proportional representation system of voting for the lower house, the House of Representatives, has made it so parties can continue to exist as long as their base is at or above 5% of the electorate. The Progressive Alliance is at 44%, by far and away the largest party most likely and through MMP, they can target marginal seats as well and win more seats than their base would suggest. If that ALL falls into place they could most likely form a minority government with a supply and confidence deal with one other party. Who would that party be? Labor. We have quite a lot in common on key social and economic issues, but differ in policy delivery. I honestly think that a Progressive Alliance majority government would be a bad thing for Australia as most majority governments are. Let's look at the Gillard Government. Minority government, needed support from the crossbench in both Houses, and they put forward good policies. Mrs. Clinton could get lazy in a majority government. The ideas that they've put out from both the Progressive and Labor booklets have been great, but we can't ignore the 15% Labor vote as well.
Credlin: Well, and as popular as Clinton is, she also is a popular lightning rod for the right of Australian politics. I know that I don't particularly like her. I can't fault her running of the economy, but the institution of the Native Title Court has just made Australia rule against its rural citizens and mining companies. How is that progressive and fair? Now she's letting in all of these refugees that will soon become economic migrants and undercut wages.
Keneally: I see we're still Tony Abbott's advisor here, aren't we?
Credlin: But it's true. The United Kingdom, Angleter and others have placed sensible restrictions and processes in place for their acceptance of migrants. Hillary Clinton is just telling them to show up. Even Kevin Rudd said that the boats have to stop.
Keneally: I agree, and that's why a Labor presence in a likely Progressive-Labor coalition will deliver...
Credlin: Oh, and you're Kevin Rudd's attack dog! Focus on beating the Progressives and getting the Labor Right back in your party. Ever since you lost them in the split in the 90's, Labor hasn't been quite the same. You kept Rudd which is probably the best thing Labor has done, but that's about it. Bill and Hillary Clinton are having their way with the unions, you've lost half of them to the Progressive Alliance, including your biggest one in the cities.
Keneally: And we could go on all day about how the National Party has lost the centre to the aptly named Centrist Party, they're losing the far right to Pauline Hanson. What's left for the your old boss and Christian Porter to stand on?
Credlin: Which brings us to number two; take it a way Krsitina.
Keneally: Angleter will see a much more radical government, and the efforts of Montenbourg to progressive ideals will only turn more to the right.
Credlin: Montenbourg is a new nation to the European Union, and they have already caused a mass amount of diplomatic headaches for itself. It has claimed nations have mistreated refugees with no proper evidence, their Foreign Secretary is a disgrace to such a high office and should resign if she knew what was good for her country. She's made Angleter and the United Kingdom, two of the level-headed nations of Europe, both holding it down on the left and on the right, come out and demand she retract statements or back them up with fact. This is also the same country that housed Shane Raimi from Omnibus, who was trying to influence the election there.
Keneally: Oh man, you're not helping are you?
Credlin: No, I'm doing what Malcolm Turnbull, Tony Abbott, and future Prime MInister Christian Porter would do and call them out. Look, we get the Refugee Act. Protecting innocent people at a European level is needed so that we don't have masses of people dying in a conflict. But to try and stiff arm EVERY nation in Europe into progressive ideals that would make Sam Courtenay, Hillary Clinton and Emily Thornberry look like conservatives is grounds for leaving the European Union. We've already seen Pravoslavya leave.
Keneally: Good riddance too.
Credlin: And the tides of leaving the European Union has been bubbling for a few years in the United Kingdom.
Keneally: I think their intent is good, but why not engage in dialogue with nations before making inflammatory statements. There is potential for a huge trade agreement with the UK ready to go and they've reached out to Angleter. The problem is that I think the UK Government has some reservations about the behaviour of the Government of Montenbourg, having been burned by Davishire in the past as well as Framptonia, all under my good friends in the UK Labour Party. They would do better not to make sweeping statements but instead go around Europe building consensus. By the way, where is Chelsea Clinton in getting some of this stuff done?
Credlin: I know, Chelsea is absent from all of this. When we come back from the break: can Theresa May bounce back after an Irish election sets up a potential for being left with only Southern England and Central England as regional governments that the Liberal Party controls in the United Kingdom, or can she pull off enough wins at the local council elections?