The Labor Party has lost touch with mainstream Australian concerns partly through a narrow focus on political feminism, Mark Latham told an audience in Melbourne last night.
The former Labor leader criticised “female Labor MPs who regard the gender prism as a frontline political concern”, saying that it led to no policies of relevance to the broader electorate. He gave the example of Anna Burke, Speaker in the last Parliament, who missed out on an opposition frontbench position. “She said that it’s shameful that in the Victorian Right, there was no female frontbencher. But breaking it down that way — according to gender, geography and factionalism — and thinking everyone has to have a slot … no one cares about this,” he said.