The decorum of Tony Abbott’s Libs versus The Fibs election strategy revealed today didn’t last long.

Oh, he's been arrested? How unfortunate… Pic: Gary Ramage

The Opposition Leader presented a nicely-nicely persona, a bloke who wanted policy to the fore and who would not call Prime Minister Julia Gillard a liar. He would merely make broad references to fibs.

“So my pledge to you is that I won’t say one thing before an election and do the opposite afterwards because fibbing your way into office is what’s brought our public life into disrepute,” he told the National Press Club.

The man who late last year had said in Parliament that Ms Gillard was a “dodgy and unethical lawyer” because of her involvement in an AWU “slush fund” today made no mention of that episode and less mention of her personally.

But the news that former Labor MP Craig Thomson had been arrested in NSW on behalf of Victorian police ended the nicely-nicely pose. It was back to personality politics. The policies could wait.

“But the Thomson matter isn’t just about what Craig Thomson may or may not have done, what he did or didn’t do,” said Mr Abbott.

“It’s always been about the judgement of the Prime Minister.

“And you certainly can’t expect that there won’t be questions raised about prime ministerial judgement by the Coalition.”

It is unlikely that any court action against Mr Thomson would commence before the September 14 election, but that is little consolation for the Labor Government.

An MP if convicted of a crime carrying a potential penalty of a year in jail cannot stay in Parliament. Mr Thomson’s removal - following the resignation as Speaker by Peter Slipper which meant a Labor replacement had to be found - would wreck the minority government. But that stage won’t be reached before the election.

However, issues related to Mr Thomson and the HSU mess will be conspicuous and poisonous for Labor. They will fuel a significant part of Opposition policy, and no doubt some name calling.

“I support unions that are honestly managed and genuinely focussed on a fair deal for their members,” Mr Abbott said.

“That’s why a big part of the Coalition’s workplace policy will be tackling (any issues) in the Health Services Union and the Australian Workers Union.

“These are the sorts of measures that a less-compromised Labor government could introduce and that decent Labor people would support.”

Comments on this post will close at 8pm AEDT.

Most commented

121 comments

Show oldest | newest first

    • SM says:

      01:39pm | 31/01/13

      What is it that you’re trying to say, Mal?

    • Tubesteak says:

      02:20pm | 31/01/13

      I think Mal is trying to imply that Abbott said he’ll be nice and only focus on policy. But now that Abbott has said something about Thommo and Labor he’s not being nice and is therefore a hypocrite.

      But Mal wasn’t able to pull out a direct quote to support the former proposition. Mal must be trying to rely on “the vibe”.

      I await a direct quote from after yesterday that shows Abbott said he’s only going to focus on policy and not personality.

    • Rosie says:

      02:48pm | 31/01/13

      Mal the spoiler was trying to dent Mr Abbott’s new found good guy image. He and others alike are afraid that Mr Abbott has decided to turn a new leaf because the women folk in his life have ordered him to do so. He is trying to please all females not just the ones that love him dearly. Wouldn’t you if you were trying to enter the Lodge? It is fair and legal so what is the big deal? You cannot do anything for your country and its people as Opposition Leader. Abbott craves for the authority that Julia Gillard has trashed for selfish reasons.

    • v says:

      02:52pm | 31/01/13

      The first six contributors had Mal’s measure but he pulled the posts.

    • Scott says:

      02:53pm | 31/01/13

      Lol.. the ABBOTT ABBOTT ABBOTT lives on in the leftist Press Gallary.

      A man elected as a Labor MP to Federal Parliament, a man who Gillard said she stood by 100% is arrested on 150 charges.

      Malcolm Farr then manages to draw that back to Abbott.

      Hat’s off Mal.

    • pa_kelvin says:

      03:23pm | 31/01/13

      v .... a couple of times… cant critisise

    • James of Hong Kong says:

      03:29pm | 31/01/13

      “Abbott’s a Hypocrite”? Desperate, Tubesteak, very, very desperate!

      So it’s the “vibe” now is it? Is that what now passes as legitimate character assassination of Abbott? Again Tubesteak, desperate ... very, very desperate.

      This isn’t the Castle Tube it’s real life and it is very, very serious indeed.

    • Tombowler says:

      02:15pm | 31/01/13

      It’s the relevance of your comment that I particularly liked….

    • james says:

      02:36pm | 31/01/13

      8 months of no policies should be interesting.

    • Knemon says:

      02:38pm | 31/01/13

      Interesting how big a part his wife is playing, it appears they are taking the American ‘first lady’ approach…tea anyone!

    • Bomb78 says:

      02:45pm | 31/01/13

      Thanks Mattb, I missed it - but I did catch JG on the radio yesterday from the NPC. She was all motherhood statements and three word slogans too.
      The difference is she’s had more than five years in government to add substance to her talk, and it hasn’t happened.

    • Zed says:

      02:46pm | 31/01/13

      Better than ” Moving Foward ”

    • Jason says:

      02:52pm | 31/01/13

      I just read the link. I wonder what Abbot’s secret controversial budget cut would be? All I know is, it would have to be HUGE!!!! for him to keep all his other promises such as: giving the carbon tax back to the polluters and then giving them some of the money raised from the income taxes, giving the mining tax back to the (mostly foreign owned) mining companies while tax payers continue to subsidise them, giving health insurance rebates to everyone no matter how rich they are, giving baby bonuses to everyone no matter how rich they are or how many kids they have, and lets not forget his generous maternity leave scheme (well generous to female lawyers, corporate types and sex workers or any other woman earning $150K+ but not so generous to nurses, librarians or any women on average incomes).

    • Chillin says:

      02:52pm | 31/01/13

      Maybe his wife should make a remark about asian women with small fingers to get attention?

    • Rosie says:

      02:55pm | 31/01/13

      Knemon

      It sure beats talking digital probing and small Asian female doctors under a candle lit dinner in the Lodge. One can only assume that is the kind of chat from the first lady and the first bloke.

    • Borderer says:

      03:13pm | 31/01/13

      Jason
      What will he be giving back from the mining tax???? I’m confused I didn’t think it raised a single cent thus far.

    • FlyOnTheWall says:

      03:21pm | 31/01/13

      Are you quoting Gillard and Albo directly, Mattb?
      For example: “3 word slogans” - “negativity” etcetera… how about formaing an original thought?

      Too much perhaps?

    • Mattb says:

      03:22pm | 31/01/13

      Jason

      “I just read the link. I wonder what Abbot’s secret controversial budget cut would be? All I know is, it would have to be HUGE!!!!”

      He’s removing the School kids bonuses. Not a biggie, but a very good step in my opinion.

      Pity he ruined it later by announcing that he will still introduce his GREAT BIG NEW TAX on EVERYTHING to fund his ridiculously overcooked maternity leave scheme. He definitely not a conservative. A CONservative maybe…

    • Sherlock says:

      03:33pm | 31/01/13

      Breaking news!

      Politician wants to be considered a “good bloke”

      Hold the front page!

      Yawn!!!

    • mikem says:

      01:42pm | 31/01/13

      Mr Abbott clearly does not understand or have any respect for the concept of sub judice.  Once again he has demonstrated that political advantage is far more important to him than principle with the latter comes a poor second.

    • difficult lemon says:

      02:14pm | 31/01/13

      Well read the quotes in the article. He did observe the rule re sub - judice. He made no mention of the specifics of the case and instead, and quite rightly so, referred to the fact it once again highlighted Gillard’s shortcomings.

    • AJ says:

      02:35pm | 31/01/13

      It doesn’t sound like he commented in the case directly, he only questioned the judgement of the Prime Minister in her support of him.  It sounds like you don’t understand the concept of sub judice much either.

    • Ian says:

      02:49pm | 31/01/13

      Comment about the judgement of the Prime minister has no relevance to sub judice.  Comment may be made about the activities of those peripheral to the case but not about matters that might prejudice court proceedings.  The point at issue is the judgement or the lack thereof of the PM.

    • Hamish says:

      01:46pm | 31/01/13

      “I support unions that are honestly managed and genuinely focussed on a fair deal for their members.” So…I guess that means he pretty much doesn’t support unions then.

    • Mitch says:

      02:01pm | 31/01/13

      Abbott supports unions, but only the ones like the Chamber of Commerce that represent the interests of business owners and investors.

    • Keith Hammersmith says:

      02:50pm | 31/01/13

      yeah those damn business owners and the people they employ!

      oh wait…..

    • Pete the ex-smoker says:

      03:10pm | 31/01/13

      Good call…add in the doctors union the AMA and the dentists union as well, self serving institutions if ever there was one…

    • Mitch says:

      03:30pm | 31/01/13

      yeah, those damn profit sucking employees and the products they make for their employers!

      Oh wait….

      ...Its almost like there’s some sort of symbiotic relationship at play,  maybe that needs to be kept in balance.

    • JoniM says:

      03:46pm | 31/01/13

      No ! Abbott supports the other 85% of workers !
      Those that actually are at work today, not those in the various docks or inquiries or ALP strategy meetings around our nation !

    • peter says:

      01:48pm | 31/01/13

      Unfortunately Thommos arrest took the gloss off all the coalitions new policies that were announced today….

    • Keith says:

      02:12pm | 31/01/13

      Which were ... ?

    • Marcus says:

      02:18pm | 31/01/13

      Just like Gillards election date took all the gloss off her new policies and costings.

    • Peter says:

      02:33pm | 31/01/13

      Ok, I give up, what policies? He has said that no detail would be released until after Labor release theirs. Therefore anything he says now is just ‘pie in the sky’ BS. Then again, that’s no different to any other statement by the vast majority of pollies. A pox on their houses I say!

    • GregE says:

      02:39pm | 31/01/13

      Yes I hear he was going to announce cheaper fuel, cheaper groceries, the building of 260 childcare centres, a coast guard, an East Timor solution, a Malaysian swap deal, green loans, an education revolution, laptops for every child, cash for clunkers, pokie machine reform, root and branch tax reform, support for Kevin Rudd, and to insulate our homes.

      And apparently he doesn’t have to deliver any of it because some people are stupid enough to blindly vote for all of that crap.

    • peter says:

      02:57pm | 31/01/13

      Axing of the school kids bonus was announced. A good policy as education for the masses it not important.

    • Peter says:

      03:19pm | 31/01/13

      @peter…obviously grin

    • Tarzan says:

      03:19pm | 31/01/13

      Me Tarzan. You Joan.

    • Keith says:

      03:22pm | 31/01/13

      Thanks, peter. Too much book larnin’ and they might vote ALP one day.

    • Tony says:

      03:24pm | 31/01/13

      What do you fools want in terms of ‘new policies’? You mean policies like the NDIS with no funding, no timeframe and no ideas? Or do you mean like the NBN with no business plan and no cost benefit analysis? Or maybe you mean like Labor’s economic policy - you know ‘We guarantee a surplus’?

      Go read the Liberals policies you dopes and stop mouthing Labor press releases.

    • Shane says:

      03:58pm | 31/01/13

      @Tony.

      Yes. The NDIS and the NBN please. Both excellent policies, just like the ALP’s economic policies which saw us through the GFC to record wealth, record employment and record long term investment. What did Tony Abbott announce today? Can you remember any of his policies from the last election? What were they?

    • Phoebe says:

      01:56pm | 31/01/13

      I’m sorry but Abbott is completely justified in calling Gillard a liar, because she is. The “there will be no carbon tax under a government I lead” is the most famous one,  but there’s reasons Gillard has a “trust” problem.

    • Julia says:

      02:27pm | 31/01/13

      Oh cry me a river.

    • Peter says:

      02:34pm | 31/01/13

      ...and so is ‘trust me, I’m a politician’ Tony grin
      It’s all based on spin and media management. If you fall for it, you deserve everything you get.

    • Joker says:

      02:37pm | 31/01/13

      lol…

    • Matthais says:

      02:51pm | 31/01/13

      Dear me, Phoebe - that one is getting a little tired.

      Can you name a politician (or any human for that matter) who has never told a lie?

      There was one that Abbott told about meeting with Cardinal George Pell in the lead up to the 2004 election, at a time that Labor’s schools policy was quite contentious.

      Abbott was accused of meeting with Pell to discuss the policy and strenuously denied meeting Pell until he was forced to admit his lie by Tony Jones.

      Then there was that time that Mr Abbott said that you really shouldn’t trust anything that he said unless it was scripted…

      You can’t trust any of them, that is a simple fact.

      Attempting to make any election about “trust” (anyone remember the “who do you trust to keep interest rates low/interest rates will always be lower under a coalition government”?) is a complete joke, and highly disingenuous.

      If I were an ALP spin doctor, I’d be having quite a bit of fun with Abbott’s attempts to paint anyone in Canberra as being trustworthy.

      Let’s drop the charade and have an election fought on policies and things that matter, not the glib claims from anyone of either side that they don’t tell lies.

    • MK says:

      02:52pm | 31/01/13

      He is completely justified and Qualified
      under the age old principle of
      takes one to know one,
      Mr don’t beleive anyhing i say unless i put it in writing,
      Tells us this election will be about Trust

    • james says:

      02:52pm | 31/01/13

      Make sure its written down Phoebe.

    • Chillin says:

      02:54pm | 31/01/13

      acotrel is going silly with his simply named aliases

    • Mitch says:

      03:04pm | 31/01/13

      Going by Abbotts previous comments in interviews, unless he signs something in blood, you can never be sure if he’s telling the truth, or just making some off-the-cuff “promise” that he can’t back up.

    • finishthesentence says:

      03:09pm | 31/01/13

      and the following line that you and the LNP conveniently leave out every time was “but I am detemined to put a price on carbon”

    • Mr. Jordon says:

      03:37pm | 31/01/13

      And yet it was the Coalition that invent the ‘core’ and ‘non core’ promise.

    • My way or the highway says:

      04:04pm | 31/01/13

      I have come to the conclusion that she isn’t leading she is sledging and bullying. Off with his/her head.
      Was Bill Shorten overlooked grin to be advised of the election date? 
      I wonder is he still trying to reach her shoulder to tap on it and say “Hey, what about me?”

    • Paul C says:

      01:56pm | 31/01/13

      Interesting sequence of events yesterday and today - 1. Election Called and 2. Thompson arrested.  If Thompson resigns, can a bi-election be held now that Julia has called the election?

    • GregE says:

      02:22pm | 31/01/13

      Gillard has not called an election. She has not been to see the GG. She can’t be trusted on the date.

    • Mattb says:

      02:39pm | 31/01/13

      Paul C and Phil b

      Educate yourself before commenting. The election hasn’t been ‘called’ at all. It won’t be ‘called’ until August. Are Australian’s really this slow??..

      All that Gillard has done is let everyone know the election date. Nothing more.

    • john says:

      02:40pm | 31/01/13

      Seems a by-election needs to be held. Found a comment from Anthony Green:
      “Under the Electoral Act the period between writ issue and polling day for the House cannot be longer than 58 days so a writ could not be issued for 14 September until about 18 July.”

      I assume the business of government has to continue therefore a by - election would be held immediately for Thompsons seat, considering he has 150 charges against him and is under arrest and unable to perform his duties as minister.

      http://blogs.abc.net.au/antonygreen/2013/01/federal-election-date-announced-14-september-2013.html#comments

    • Max Redlands says:

      02:47pm | 31/01/13

      Technically the election has not been called only the date of it has been announced.

      The election is not really “on” until the writs are issued and the Government goes into caretaker mode.

      So yes I think a by-election could be held before then.

    • Paul C says:

      02:48pm | 31/01/13

      I agree with you GregE on one thing she can’t be trusted on the date.  But I’d bet my bottom dollar that the announcement yesterday was strategic.  She is up to something.

    • Greg says:

      03:42pm | 31/01/13

      Speaker can set a by-election date if a member resigns or otherwise ceases to be a member (Dies, jailed, etc), but convention has it that the Speaker does not need to set a date if an election date is already established. This needs to be tested but appears to be the case. So now responsible journos should be asking why did Gillard have to rush out yesterday and name a date more than 7 months in the future when no other PM before her has had to do this? Just saying.

    • Phillb says:

      02:06pm | 31/01/13

      Maybe I am a skeptic but I find the timing of the arrest vs. the timing of the election announcement a little suspect.

    • Borderer says:

      03:25pm | 31/01/13

      It’s amazing, like when Slipper came over to be speaker right as Wilkie’s deadline approached or when she had that victory speech drafted two weeks before Rudd was booted…

    • Lexie says:

      02:07pm | 31/01/13

      I wish Abbott would shut his face. I’m moving to North Korea if he gets in

    • Anthoy says:

      02:21pm | 31/01/13

      I hope you don’t have the same definition of promise as Gillard.

    • Matthew says:

      02:40pm | 31/01/13

      You’d love it. Wouldn’t have to worry about compulsory voting or any sort of independant thought whatsoever.

    • joller says:

      02:48pm | 31/01/13

      You don’t know what the heck you’re talking about

    • Steve Douglas says:

      02:48pm | 31/01/13

      Can I contribute to your ticket. Australia may be a better place given this comment. Over there you would not have the opportunity to even make your comment.

    • Dave says:

      02:48pm | 31/01/13

      I desperately hope the Australian public calls the liar for who she is and you are called on this statement.

    • David C says:

      02:49pm | 31/01/13

      Bye see ya

    • Mattb says:

      02:50pm | 31/01/13

      Look, it will be embarrassing having the 30% man representing us if he is elected, he’s our GW bush Jnr thats for sure, the man’s an absolute dope.

      But leaving this country and moving to North Korea is a bit of an outrageous statement to make.

      In reality, life and the Australian economy doesn’t change much at all with a change of government in this country, our two major party’s equally provide stable governance and there isn’t many differences between the two.

      The weather has had a greater effect in the last few years!..

    • boy on a bike says:

      02:55pm | 31/01/13

      Put your money where your mouth is and buy a one way ticket for 15 September.

    • Jaymac says:

      02:58pm | 31/01/13

      Can I help you pack?

    • beth says:

      03:00pm | 31/01/13

      Lexie just by your comment ‘shut his face’ give’s me a perfect image of what you are like,no further comment needed.Make sure you go to north korea.

    • beth says:

      03:00pm | 31/01/13

      Lexie just by your comment ‘shut his face’ give’s me a perfect image of what you are like,no further comment needed.Make sure you go to north korea.

    • Tony H says:

      03:08pm | 31/01/13

      I doubt they’ll want you unless you are an expert on chemical, nuclear or biological weapons.

    • Tony says:

      03:27pm | 31/01/13

      I expect you will keep your promise just like Gillard keeps hers. But on the basis that you are an honest man - take a thick coat and lots of spare food. You will need both. See ya!

    • Lee says:

      03:32pm | 31/01/13

      Enjoy comrade….

    • Big Jay says:

      02:07pm | 31/01/13

      ““I support unions that are honestly managed and genuinely focussed on a fair deal for their members,” Mr Abbott said…”

      Are we seriously supposed to be live this tripe? Abbott supports unions?...gimme a break!

    • DeanR says:

      02:27pm | 31/01/13

      He supports them the same as most other anti-union people. There is nothing wrong with a good union that stands up for its workers and does actually strive to work for them whilst understanding the nature of business. The unions of old were like this and necissary. The modern day unions are out dated and about nothing but power and sucking every single dollar out of business, bugger the consequences.

    • TC says:

      02:41pm | 31/01/13

      The Liberals have never sought to close or shut down unions.

    • Paul C says:

      02:45pm | 31/01/13

      He is speaking the truth , but as there are no unions that work for their members, he will never need to support one.

    • Jackson says:

      02:52pm | 31/01/13

      Hi Big Jay. Agree that Abbott does not support unions as we all know they are not honestly managed and genuinely focussed on padding some over-zealous good-for-nothings that milk fees out of workers by raising fear campaigns. The honest truth is employers will pay and pay well people who help build a business rather than act like the sloths that build another office on Sussex Street. Really - what has your Union done for you lately?

    • Jackson says:

      02:52pm | 31/01/13

      Hi Big Jay. Agree that Abbott does not support unions as we all know they are not honestly managed and genuinely focussed on padding some over-zealous good-for-nothings that milk fees out of workers by raising fear campaigns. The honest truth is employers will pay and pay well people who help build a business rather than act like the sloths that build another office on Sussex Street. Really - what has your Union done for you lately?

    • Donkey voter says:

      03:32pm | 31/01/13

      I support political parties that are honestly managed and genuinely focussed on a fair deal for their members.

    • Tator says:

      03:39pm | 31/01/13

      Paul C,
      I can name one, the Police Association of SA.  Works tirelessly for the troops and has been well run over the last 18 years by the now retiring Secretary Andy Dunn.  I have been a member for 23 years and an unpaid workplace delegate for 4 years so I have seen both the inside workings and the exterior.  In addition, prior to last years annual delegates conference, PASA had its books and work practices audited by an independant auditing firm which found the Association rules and procedures all exceed requirements as stated by Ian Temby QC after his investigation into the HSU.

    • Onlooker says:

      02:15pm | 31/01/13

      I watched Paul Murray live last night..or half watched it..after 3 of the same Tony Abbott came on, I switched it off and went to ABC.. if need be I will turn Fox off till after the next election… to many Political adds from any party turn people off. I will doing the same with Labor if I am bombarded, as for Thompson and Slipper I think most of us are sick of it

    • Up The Workers! says:

      02:24pm | 31/01/13

      Slogan for the election:

      “The Libs -vs- The Fibs”.

      And this time round, if BOTH parties promise that “There will be no carbon tax under the Government I lead”, we know which party is being truthful about it.

    • Jason says:

      03:45pm | 31/01/13

      Slogans are for the stupid.

    • Time To Listen People says:

      02:27pm | 31/01/13

      The biggest problem in Australia is that so many people cannot understand the simplest of statements they confuse what is actually said so what they want to hear.

    • Cheryl from Melton says:

      02:36pm | 31/01/13

      “An MP if convicted of a crime carrying a potential penalty of a year in jail cannot stay in Parliament.”

      This sentence has me confused…... if a MP has a conviction under that level he/she can stay in Parliament,....... but if Joe Public has a record ( of say, shop -lifting a chocolate bar when he was 15), he is disqualified for life from working within the public services.

      Seem strange to me…????

    • Chokoy says:

      02:37pm | 31/01/13

      While Tony Abbott is the leader of the Liberal Party, I think they can’t win the election….

    • Keith Hammersmith says:

      02:52pm | 31/01/13

      and you would be wrong

    • MickR says:

      03:08pm | 31/01/13

      The Libs don’t need a leader at all and they will still be a shoo in.
      A cardboard cutout of a faceless preson could lead the Libs to this easy victory.

    • Bho Ghan-Pryde says:

      03:20pm | 31/01/13

      Chokoy, I am pretty sure some said the same about John Howard in 1996. Time will tell. Certainly those putting their money where their mouths are on betting sites reckon he can win and win well. Would you be prepared to put your money where your mouth is?

    • E Goodway says:

      03:32pm | 31/01/13

      Then you think wrong - wait and see just how wrong!

    • Billy says:

      03:36pm | 31/01/13

      @Chokoy
      You were right last time, and you could be right again next time too.

    • Max says:

      04:04pm | 31/01/13

      @boganpride

      That was in 2007, and they were right. Howard even lost his own seat which is unbelievable for a sitting PM.

    • Terence of Wollongong says:

      02:39pm | 31/01/13

      You would have to dig deep to find something in the Thompson affair that reflected badly on Abbott.  But congradulations, you tried anyway.  Not the PMs undying support for the guy and what that says about her judgment, or enrentched labor dealings and standards, no.  Not the merking matters associated with union money going into political slush funds, no.  Not Thompsons tearful attacks on Abbott now holding no credibility at all, no. Not the years of delays in bringing this guy to justice and the questionable interferance from the government in that process, no not that either.  Its Abbott that is the problem, yea.  Its going to be a long campaign but at least we know where you stand. Love the photo by the way, can’t wait for the studio portrait of Julia you use, you know the one where she looks like a PM.

    • fred says:

      02:42pm | 31/01/13

      Is there a third choice at the élection ?  Tony Idiot or Gillard… what a terrible choice we have to make :(

    • Robert says:

      03:34pm | 31/01/13

      Could be worse.  WOULD be worse Fred if you were in the mix!!!

    • Barney says:

      03:42pm | 31/01/13

      Yes. Bob Katter.

    • porloc says:

      02:46pm | 31/01/13

      It is not personality politics to openly expose and condemn those who are corrupt and who exploit the weak and vunerable. Nor is it anti-union. I would have thought those who supported the interests of working people would be leading the fight against the corrupt practices we are seeing exposed in the HSU and AWU. Or in the activities of NSW Labor being aired at the moment.Thank goodness for ethical union officals like Kathy Jackson and courageous journalists like Michael Smith.

    • Sarah Bath says:

      02:47pm | 31/01/13

      Abbott is in for it now, he’s bitten off more than he can chew this time.

    • Bho Ghan-Pryde says:

      02:49pm | 31/01/13

      As expected from the ALP tragics on this site Craig Thompson’s arrest is all about Tony. But whatever and anyway back on Earth at least we now know the reasons Julia called the election 6 months out and in such a hurry she did not even inform her own caucus. The reasons being the imminent arrest of Thompson, the polls making ALP members nervous about who is leading the party and those same polls meaning it cannot be a normal length campaign, as she needs time for a miracle.
      This ALP government just keeps on giving to the Coalition. At this rate, they will guarantee Tony at least four terms. Are we sure Julia and Wayne and company do not secretly work for the Liberal Party? Maybe they are some sort of super deep sleepers planted decades ago to wreak havoc on the ALP. Could it all be a put up job by Bob Santamaria, Tony and the Jesuits to seize control of the country and make it a vassal state of the Vatican?
      The talk from Oakshott and Windsor of a new paradigm for politics has turned out to be true but I suspect those who listened thought they had something else in mind. Let the fun roll on – the longer the better.

    • Craig says:

      02:50pm | 31/01/13

      I would have Tony any day before Julia , she broke a massive election promise and treated the Australian Electorate with contempt . The carbon tax is starting to bite now, now having to find money in the budget because they spent to much to early, the proping up of companies with tax payers money that employ union workers baffle me when we are in a free trade market. I was a Labor voter , never again , Labor has not one person who has worked for themselves or held a position in the private sector where they have been accountable for their actions. They will be smashed in the next Election in September , it will be the best thing for Labor because it will force them to clean house , break their ties to the greens. We don’t know if Julia will lead in September she might be to busy answering questions about the AWU after march!!

    • Lee says:

      03:44pm | 31/01/13

      Indeed…. If my industry got $1 for every $3 from the Govt like the automotive industry then I might join a union and vote labour… Just imagine, I’d never have to be productive again! Muwahahaha!!!

    • As if says:

      03:47pm | 31/01/13

      Sure you were. LMAO Why do LNP supporters always tell fibs?

    • Tim says:

      02:52pm | 31/01/13

      I am an ex union delegate and support the right of the worker but i also support Abbot in converting unions under buisness law guidelines and subject to laws the same as any commercial buisness , i dont support unions running governments , or the crooks that run them , face it labor historically blows the bugets and liberal fix them back up the only reason rudd got in last time was because a whole stream of 10 year olds who matured to voting age voted him in with a cool logo , if any of you can remember the last days of the keating government , 12 000 bankrupts per week per state the front page news from canberra was Australia to be repossesed , I hope labour drown and i hope abbott puts a royal comission through all of them , you will then see just how many of them end up in the slammer , hey lexie ill chuck $20 bucks toward your air fare any chance of taking your labour mates with you to Korea . surprising the country you picked is run by a communist dictator , bon voyarge

    • Max says:

      02:54pm | 31/01/13

      So what @Lexie is saying is that Australia will revert back to being a democracy under Abbott, hence the need to find another communist country to live in eg North Korea. May as well go now Lexie because, under Abbott, when he gets in,S you will have to work to get payed- no free loading off the tax payer. See ya.

    • beth says:

      02:55pm | 31/01/13

      Labor supporters !! are you all deaf-dumb & blind?Gillard called the election so it would be just that little bit harder to give her the boot. Seriously does any Australian believe anything that she says or does is for the good of all Australians.I just hope that the last five years is going to be a lesson to us all that when you vote in Labor that’s exactly what it means .Hard Life.

    • Pete from Sydney says:

      03:15pm | 31/01/13

      Australia is currently the fourth happiest place in the world to be born in

      Australia is currently the 7th most prosperous place in the world to be live

      Australia is currently second on the list of the best quality of life

      And

      Australia is ranked the best to live in by the OECD

      Stop whingeing

    • Mattb says:

      03:34pm | 31/01/13

      Beth

      “Labor supporters !! are you all deaf-dumb & blind?Gillard called the election so it would be just that little bit harder to give her the boot”

      Wow, what is it that compels these people to make incredible fools of themselves on the internet.  “are you all deaf-dumb & blind?”. Umm, no, but judging by your post you must be because the election hasn’t even been called yet. Wont be till the PM goes to the GG in August…

    • Rose says:

      04:02pm | 31/01/13

      Hate to break it to you but you’re wrong, if anything shit just got real and Julia should be watching her back. There’s already been a story about Rudd supporters putting her on notice. A bad poll or two and she may find herself taken out and replaced. With Craig Thompson’s arrest she has another black mark next to her name and if she doesn’t pull something special out of the hat she may find backbenchers would be more happy for her to lose her job than for them to lose theirs.

    • francesLL says:

      03:00pm | 31/01/13

      God I hate Witch hunts. Totally degrading to all of us. Makes me feel a little sick inside…There but for the Grace and all….

    • Terry2 says:

      03:04pm | 31/01/13

      I thought Abbott’s speech was well delivered and he presented well and seemed to respond adequately to the Q&A session. The overlong applause from family and friends was a bit embarrassing, though.
      To me he remains, an enigma wrapped in a very tight shirt (where does he get them made !)
      ‘Can’t figure out why he had to stress repealing the school kids’ cash bonus scheme (Primary kids $410 and secondary $820 per annum) which was changed last year from a tax deduction (with supporting receipts) to cash; you can’t always get dockets from Vinnies or the school s/hand shop. I know this has been a very welcome supplement to families with school age kids buying uniforms and shoes in recent weeks.
      Strangely, he then confirmed that the private healthcare government rebate on premiums of 30% would be reinstated for the well heeled. Really don’t understand that sort of thinking.
      Bearing in mind that this is the first time I have heard him speak publicly for some considerable time I would give him an 8 out of ten with the observation ’ must spend more time on homework’.

    • As expected says:

      03:11pm | 31/01/13

      All the predictable labor ( McTernin ) tragics out in force. As original as yesterdays wheatbix !

    • Tim says:

      03:12pm | 31/01/13

      Chokoy with respect you could put a wombat into the liberal leadership and they will still win hands down , it will be a repeate of the Qld election , just count your numbers and work it out , if Labor is voted in again it will be the end of your so called lucky country , and by the way Abbott is under law—not obligated to show his figures until the last two weeks , and by the way dont you think he will need some honest answers on the real borrowing blowout befor he can work out how to fix it ,the present Gov does not give anyone real answers opposition or public , as well of the fact the last time a liberal gov put out their polices befor time Labour pinched them and made them their own , get real politics is at this point is about passion and it should be about practical policies , people are treating this election like a state of origin game LIb Lab , while it should be about a game of australia v the rest of the world . And by the way just for the record if Labor had good solid policies and principles and were seperated from unions i would consider voteing for them, this is not about labor or liberal this is about the best possible outcome for australians and our economy .

    • Nurse R says:

      03:37pm | 31/01/13

      Elections date set yesterday, Craig Thomson arrested today, lets just sit back and enjoy the ride.  This is going to be fun.

    • Miles says:

      03:47pm | 31/01/13

      Many of the above comments demonstrate exactly why we end up with the governments we do.  Everybody mentions Gillard and Abbott - and yet it’s the party who actually determine policy.  It doesn’t matter who the figurehead is.  Furthermore, you aren’t voting for either of these people either, you vote for your local federal member.  Too many ignorant voters in this country who believe that the popularity of the leader is what is most important.

    • No Fan of Lib or Lab says:

      03:50pm | 31/01/13

      No one should criticize Tony Abbot for the overuse of three word slogans.  For any attempt by Tony Abbot to string together more than three words in one sentence makes him sound like a bleating sheep and renders the sentence incomprehensible.

    • Bear says:

      04:02pm | 31/01/13

      ‘I support unions’.... The no fib lasted all of a day!

 

Facebook Recommendations

Read all about it

Punch live

Up to the minute Twitter chatter

Recent posts

The latest and greatest

The Punch is moving house

The Punch is moving house

Good morning Punchers. After four years of excellent fun and great conversation, this is the final post…

Will Pope Francis have the vision to tackle this?

Will Pope Francis have the vision to tackle this?

I have had some close calls, one that involved what looked to me like an AK47 pointed my way, followed…

Advocating risk management is not “victim blaming”

Advocating risk management is not “victim blaming”

In a world in which there are still people who subscribe to the vile notion that certain victims of sexual…

Nosebleed Section

choice ringside rantings

From: Hasbro, go straight to gaol, do not pass go

Tim says:

They should update other things in the game too. Instead of a get out of jail free card, they should have a Dodgy Lawyer card that not only gets you out of jail straight away but also gives you a fat payout in compensation for daring to arrest you in the first place. Instead of getting a hotel when you… [read more]

From: A guide to summer festivals especially if you wouldn’t go

Kel says:

If you want a festival for older people or for families alike, get amongst the respectable punters at Bluesfest. A truly amazing festival experience to be had of ALL AGES. And all the young "festivalgoers" usually write themselves off on the first night, only to never hear from them again the rest of… [read more]

Gentle jabs to the ribs

Superman needs saving

Superman needs saving

Can somebody please save Superman? He seems to be going through a bit of a crisis. Eighteen months ago,… Read more

28 comments

Newsletter

Read all about it

Sign up to the free News.com.au newsletter