Wayne Swan may be serving up a “no frills” Budget for 2010 today, but that won’t stop the pundits picking apart his packet of You’ll Love Coles Creole Creams in the vain hope of finding a genuine Oreo they can sink their teeth into.

And there’ll be nothing “budget” about Crikey‘s coverage of Australian politics’ night-of-nights. We’ve got a team of crack commentators in the lock-up, while First Dog on the Moon has been let off the leash in Parliament House all day. We’ll be putting out special pre- and post-lock-up editions of the Crikey Daily Mail, and our liveblog kicks off with Swan’s speech at 7:30pm.

Stay tuned to our Budget 2010 page all day as the news, analysis, videos and tweets roll in.

In the meantime, here’s all the bargain basement commentary, analysis and speculation from the nation’s commentators ahead of today’s today’s big reveal:

The Australian

Editorial: A budget for the future, not just for the election

The budget, far from being anodyne, is one of the most politically charged in decades and is pivotal to the fortunes of the Rudd government in the forthcoming election.

Michael Stuchbury: Stabilisation fund could avert madcap spending

Tonight’s budget is primed to return to surplus much earlier than forecast six months ago … this will allow Wayne Swan to proclaim his budget stimulus a great success.

Niki Savva: Spare us all the hot air and just sell us the facts

Here’s a bit of gratuitous advice for the Treasurer, Wayne Swan … Forgo the overblown rhetoric and the spin and just give us the facts: plainly, simply, honestly.

Tom Dusevic: Treasurer striving to sell a vision

… sources say it is in the Labor tradition of fairness and reform.

Peter van Onselen: A victim of his own populism

If Rudd needs a circuit breaker to get his messaging right, the budget may not have enough political capital to do it.

The Age

Tony Wright and Peter Martin: $30 billion rebound

Sources said Mr Swan had crafted his budget around the fact that the economy has rebounded with unexpected vigour since last year.

Herald Sun

Phillip Hudson: Rudd’s credibility depends on running repairs on Budget week

[Rudd] needs to use the Budget as the circuit breaker to win back trust.

Terry McCrann: Numbers fiddling

It’s going to be all fiscal fiddling over policy substance.

Daily Telegraph

Malcolm Farr: Swan’s Budget skips usual treats

The argument will be that going into debt during the crisis was essential to saving the nation and now is the time to refloat the ship.

Malcolm Farr and Sue Dunlevy: Pills to fix PM’s political health

… the jury’s out whether it will resuscitate the collapsing fortunes of the Rudd Government.

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Peter Fray
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