A strange kind of merger. Up in Queensland the National Party says it has merged with the Liberals to form one grand conservative party. Down in Canberra the new leader of the National Party in the Senate is the Queenslander Barnaby Joyce and he is restating his determination for the National Party to retain its right to have a different view on occasions from the Liberals. Which raises the question of what kind of merger has actually taken place up there in Brisbane?

This is a situation that will very quickly get out of hand for while Liberals in the Queensland Parliament might be so desperate to get a share of state government ministries that they will cop this weird situation, there are plenty of Victorian, South Australian and West Australian Liberal members of Federal Parliament who positively dislike having anything to do with the National Party at all. Getting sense back in to Coalition arrangements will be a real test of the leadership skills of Malcolm Turnbull but if he does not succeed he will face as disruptive a time as his predecessor did all those years ago when Queenslanders were running around with their Joh for Canberra campaign.

The View from the New York Post. Those of you who fancy a different perspective on the United States election than that presented by our very own Guy Rundle might find this little collection of interest. It tells the campaign story mainly in pictures and gives an interesting perspective of what the Rupert Murdoch means by the word impartial.

Peter Fray

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