Federal Parliament began a break, and media coverage swung from ALP leadership the week prior to providing the state premiers a little more political oxygen. Meanwhile, another asylum seeker tragedy was the most covered issue in the Australian media and gave Immigration Minister Brendan O’Connor and opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison received plenty of airtime.

PM Julia Gillard — as usual our most newsworthy politician — says the royal commission that kicks off today is an important moral moment for the country, and indeed she could use a few of those heading to an election. Quizzed on changes to superannuation in the May budget, the PM referenced a “pre-budget cycle where speculation feeds on rumor, which plays out in the papers every day”.

That follows the much-publicised opinions of sacked frontbencher Simon Crean, who is against any retrospective adjustments to super, and MP Craig Emerson suggesting superannuation tax changes were worth examining for the “fabulously wealthy”. Defence Minister Stephen Smith hosed down the Crean comments while Superannuation Minister Bill Shorten stayed mum.

The PM heads to China later this week and has typically polled better when she’s away. No doubt she will be hoping that continues.

Crikey Political Index: March 28 to April 3

Bob Katter had talkback callers weighing in on his call for tax breaks for football players.

Talkback top five

Gillard and Abbott continue to occupy most of the social media conversations. And despite coming third here, K-Rudd’s social media ranking has dropped substantially. Could it be his time as Twitter God is over now that his relevance is more tenuous than ever?

Social media top five

The first Qantas flight under its newly approved alliance with Emirates Airlines touched down in Dubai this week in an alliance that dumped Singapore as the traditional stopover to London.

Comparisons on media mentions