A big media week for politicians at state and federal levels, with all manner of disasters to mollify.
He may not want to talk to the media, but the media are talking plenty about him, with Immigration Minister Scott Morrison the first to knock the PM out of number one for 2014. The breach of Indonesian sovereignty brought a speedy and absolute apology, but it seems to be never over for Morrison, with the Nauru legal controversy keeping asylum seekers right in the news. If you were a betting person you might posit that the less the Immigration Minister talks to the media, the more reasons they will find to talk about him. How long they can both keep it up makes for an interesting duel of wills.
Social Services Minister Kevin Andrews was the other main federal mover after announcing a not entirely unsurprising welfare crackdown, while the rest of the list is once again heavy with state politicians. New South Wales Premier Barry O’Farrell is under immense pressure to legislate changes following the media storm over alcohol-fuelled street violence in Sydney’s CBD. He came up with a package of measures which some experts said could make a serious difference while others were less impressed. Meanwhile it was bushfires plus the usual parliamentary problems that kept Victorian Premier Denis Napthine high on the list.
Tasmanian Premier Lara Giddings pipped South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill as she announced March 15 as the date for the Tasmanian election, exactly the same date as the South Australian one (have one small state election, get another one free?) Both premiers are behind in the polls and at the bookies, although Tasmania’s proportional electoral system may give Giddings some chance of staying on, but only with help from the Greens that she dumped from cabinet in what some may call a totally meaningless gesture just weeks before the caretaker period starts.
And just one more thing — Clive Palmer didn’t make the list for the first time since the election. We sense a cracking media stunt coming very soon …
Crikey Political Index: January 16-22
Still no victory for Scott Morrison here, but he did at least make the top five, while Barry O’Farrell couldn’t quite pip Prime Minster Tony Abbott for number one, but he probably doesn’t mind.
Different story here, with asylum seekers way ahead of street violence as the continuing issue du jour, although Kevin Andrews did come from absolutely nowhere, as many Twitterati discovered who he actually is.
The streak is over for Novak Djokovic. There won’t be a fourth consecutive win, but considering four of his six slam victories have been here, perhaps it’s about time he won something else.