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The fate of the same-sex marriage plebiscite has continued to dominate political media, with plenty of interest on radio as well as social, and a fair bit of confusion among supporters of marriage equality about what the best outcome might be. Some media commentators have all but declared the plebiscite dead and buried after the Greens, NXT and Derryn Hinch stated they would block it, but the ALP have no interest in letting the PM off the hook a moment earlier than they need to.

Another issue where the government is trying to be wedged by some fairly clever opposition manoeuvring is the backbench sore point of superannuation. This one is creating absolutely no stir on social media and not much on talkback, but it is nevertheless festering for Turnbull and Treasurer Scott Morrison, with Opposition Leader Bill Shorten keen to be seen as a man of compromise while keeping a firm hold of the blowtorch.

A lot of public figures are starting to line up more solidly against NSW Premier Mike Baird’s greyhound racing ban, with the media lines ranging from the Labor Party and Nats claiming an attack on the working man and rural communities to plenty of Liberals claiming an attack on liberal principles of free choice. Plenty of media debate over the last couple of weeks about whether “the gloss” has come off Mike Baird, but it’s still a very long way to the next NSW election.

Bill Shorten managed some deflection with his superannuation offer from the savings bill, but the Government is doing everything it can to keep up its own wedge, with plenty of politics to be played out on this issue before perhaps an outcome is reached that does help the budget bottom line. A lot of feeling each other out in these first months of the second Turnbull government.

Not a whole lot of surprise shown by the Australian media that the Northern Territory Country Liberal Party, after going through a few Chief Ministers and a few more failed coups and a controversial port sale in the past four years got thumped by the ALP in the Northern Territory election, to the point where they may not even be an official Opposition. And in a rarity, the new Chief Minister, Michael Gunner, was actually born in the Territory. Messing with tradition, that is.

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And while it’s sport that is still dominating professional media as we head straight out of Rio and into the footy finals, but there was plenty of love across social media for one of the most wicked grinners of all, Gene Wilder, who, unlike most contemporary actors, could play both straight and funny in not just the same movie, but the same scene.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

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