Why Gillard missed out. The main impediment was never her gender nor Rudd’s desire to keep the peace with Beazley’s backers by leaving Wayne Swan shadow treasurer… No, the problem was her faction – the Left. She and Rudd were of the view that putting a left-winger in treasury, regardless of their political credentials, would gift-wrap for the desperate Howard government a “remember what happened when Whitlam put the Left in charge of Treasury?” fear campaign. — Paul Daley, SMH

Gillard & Wong doing Labor’s heavy lifting. For all the media speculation as to why Gillard did not become Treasurer, the fact is she has carriage of one of the most high-profile portfolios.The great shame is that Labor girls are still wedded to out-of-date talk of affirmative action. – Janet Albrechtson

So we dodged a bullet. Julia Gillard nearly got the Treasurer position and missed out because of the fact that she was in the Left faction. Thank goodness for prejudices and small mercies… Just remember Julia ‘Chavez’ Gillard has made vague threats against businesses for expressing contrary opinions on IR and made political footballs of an individual business and its employees. — Jason Soon, Catallaxy

Will Gillard be the next Treasurer? If Barrie Cassidy is right, and if Labor wins the next election, Julia Gillard will be Treasurer. That would mean that the levers of the nation’s economy would be in the hands of the most left wing Treasurer since Jim Cairns. For those who do not remember life under the Whitlam Government, with Cairns in the country’s top economic job, start thinking about how, between 1972 and 1975, inflation went to 16 percent, unemployment jumped by 212 per cent, home building prices soared, home loan interest rates increased by 26 per cent and days lost by strikes increased by 180 per cent. Oh, yes, and petrol prices rose by 58 per cent. — John Styles, Australian Conservative

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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