NSW END GAME
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian will today target critical Western Sydney seats ahead of tomorrow’s knife-edge election, while Labor leader Michael Daley prepares for the possibility of a minority government with the Greens and the Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Berejiklian, who today enjoys endorsements from both major metro papers ($), will campaign in the marginal seats of Penrith and East Hills, while The Daily Telegraph ($) reports that the Shooters could take up to three seats and create a hung parliament.
Meanwhile, The Australian ($) reports that Daley is facing demands from the Greens to merge competing environmental policies and invest $1.5 billion into renewable energy projects within a potential first year in office. Daley will today be campaigning at Allianz Stadium amongst ongoing PBO investigations into Labor’s plan for refurbishments ($).
MORRISON FACES ALY
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has claimed in an interview with The Project’s Waleed Aly that he has only ever sought to address, not exploit, anti-Muslim sentiments amongst voters.
As The New Daily reports, Morrison told Aly that he only raised voters’ potential anti-Muslim sentiments at a now notorious 2010 cabinet meeting in order to “lower” them. The interview comes after Morrison initially threatened — and then backed down on — legal action against Aly after the alleged 2010 comments were mentioned in a Project report on Christchurch.
When pressed on the topic of the coming election, Morrison also said that with ongoing pressure from anti-Greens LNP colleagues ($) and now Michael McCormack ($), he could not guarantee the Coalition will preference One Nation last.
MILO SOUGHT HELP FROM BOLT, JONES
Far-right figure Milo Yiannopoulos and his touring manager Damien Costas attempted to use a network of Australian conservatives including Andrew Bolt and Alan Jones to lobby the Coalition government to overturn Yiannopoulos’ first visa ban.
The Age reports that, as revealed in a series of WhatsApp messages Yiannopoulos intends to file today as part of a court action against Costas, the campaign to directly appeal to Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton and government colleagues also allegedly included contact with One Nation’s Pauline Hanson and Coalition MP George Christensen.
While backlash from conservative MPs and media outlets initially secured a reversal on the ban, Yiannopoulos’ response to the Christchurch terror attack resulted in a second, ongoing ban.
THEY REALLY SAID THAT?
I’ve never seen anything like this before… You read a book, you put it in here and you take a book out.
The member for Warringah discovers a street library and decides to film it.
CRIKEY QUICKIE: THE BEST OF YESTERDAY
“Last night, at dusk, I watched a mass haka performed beside the Al Noor Mosque. And in that moment the gap between where I live, Australia, and where I am from, New Zealand, felt like it couldn’t be wider. The haka itself was the rolling kind. After the first one, a smaller group of teens in school uniform got even closer, up against crime scene tape blocking us from the mosque, and started to perform a second haka the moment the first finished.”
“Among the more frustrating parts of One Nation’s campaign — which began with an Aboriginal Rescue Plan and continued with a plan to re-introduce blood quantum — is its success. Mainstream outlets with high readerships ventilated the policies verbatim or made only whimpers of hesitation about their ‘controversy’. They failed to initially criticise the policies’ eugenicist goals or assess their plausibility. Indigenous media and commentators filled that gap, and mainstream responses eventually followed.”
“Scott Morrison is dodging and weaving on One Nation preferences, but he has a real problem that won’t go away until he declares that Hanson’s white supremacists and fascists will go last on all Liberal and LNP ballots. The fact that the LNP wants to put Labor and the Greens below Hanson up north even after events in New Zealand is going to inflict real damage in metropolitan Queensland and in other states.”
READ ALL ABOUT IT
NSW voters are out of their old boxes, so picking this one is harder — Andy Marks (The Sydney Morning Herald): “We’re a few years late, but NSW might be experiencing the first signs of a global drift away from centrist political narratives. After roughly a quarter-of-a-century of sustained economic growth, an increasing proportion of voters aren’t feeling the promised ‘trickle down’.”
Opposition Leader Michael Daley stumbles in race to the finish ($) — Anna Caldwell (The Daily Telegraph): “The entire campaign has turned on a dime in the space of just days. If voters are listening, Daley should be in trouble. But he’ll be hoping they aren’t paying too much attention.”
Put decisions in our hands: closing the gap requires Indigenous involvement — June Oscar and Rod Little (The Guardian): “When the prime minister, Scott Morrison, tabled the 2019 Closing the Gap report last month, we were again reminded about the lack of progress made to address the inequality between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.”
HOLD THE FRONT PAGE
PRACTICE BY GUY RUNDLE
Practice distils Guy Rundle’s best writing on politics, culture, class and more. In it, he roves the campaign trails of Obama and Trump, Rudd and Abbott; rides the Greyhound around a desolate America; bails up Bob Katter and Pauline Hanson; and excavates the deeper meanings of everything from Nirvana to Anzac Day.
WHAT’S ON TODAY
The National Press Club will host “Best of health for Australia: The experts’ priorities for the 2019 Federal Election” with former Chair of the Consumers Health Forum Karen Carey, presenter on ABC’s Ask the Doctor and CEO of EAT Dr Sandro Demaio, and Head of Grattan Institute’s Health Program Stephen Duckett.
Australian Digital Alliance will host the 2019 “Copyright 20/20” forum with speakers including EU Parliamentarian Julia Reda.
Day one of the two-day Indigenous Peoples’ Contribution in Australia and Globally forum, to include presentations from writer Bruce Pascoe, The Canberra Times’ Editor-in-Chief Jack Waterford and ACT Shadow Minister for Indigenous Affairs James Milligan.
Gender Equity Victoria will launch the Active Online Bystander Project at ACMI with panellists The Guardian’s Melissa Davey, writer Madison Griffiths, RMIT sociologist Nicola Henry and sports journalist Kate O’Halloran.
A State Memorial will be held for Dame Margaret Scott recognising her contribution to ballet, dance, education and cultural life in Australia.
Director of the International CEO Forum Dr Gabriele Suder will present “Brexit: What it means for international business” at RMIT’s EU Centre.
2019 Australian of the Year Dr. Richard Harris will address an event for youth diversion charity Operation Flinders ahead of becoming an Assistant Team Leader.
The West Australian European Business Association will hold the inaugural West Australian European Defence Industry Forum with WA Minister for Defence Issues Paul Papalia amongst others.
Julie Bishop will address the 500 Club.
Opening night for Australia’s largest regional arts festival Castlemaine State Festival, to run until March 3.
Scott Morrison will announce funding for his proposed east-coast rail networks.
Christchurch, New Zealand
Jacinda Ardern and thousands of others are expected to attend Friday prayers at the Al Noor mosque following last week’s attack.