federal election clive palmer
(Image: AAP/Michael Chambers)

As the Liberal Party celebrates its federal election triumph, a number of players have stepped in to take credit for the win — from Christian lobby groups to shock jocks to Australia’s very own discount Donald Trump.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has remained the leader of the nation and it looks like he has secured a majority government, leaving behind a trail of shocked punters who relied on polls hinting at a Labor victory.

The money

Revelling in the results, and also taking credit for it, was billionaire Clive Palmer. He has declared that the efforts of his party, the United Australia Party, helped the Coalition secure the next three years of government.

Though failing to win a single seat, Palmer ran a $60 million country-wide campaign to boost his party, which has been slammed as a “preference recycling machine”. There was a major 4.5% swing to the Coalition in Queensland, and one-in-eight voters backed One Nation or Clive Palmer — not an insignificant result

In a statement put out today, Palmer said the goal of his party “was to ensure the Labor Government did not get into power, introducing more the $1 trillion of new taxes.

“This has been achieved with the collective effort from United Australia Party.”

The statement read that the nation-wide United Australia Party vote of “approximately 4% had significantly helped the Coalition to election victory”.

The national president of the Labor Party Wayne Swan hit out in a statement about “cheque-book democracy”, saying:

A $60 million spend by a conservative-aligned billionaire in a preference recycling scheme for the Liberal and National Party cannot be allowed to stand.

The microphone

Radio shock jock Alan Jones of 2GB has also reportedly taken credit for Labor’s loss. Bill Shorten, who resigned as leader after losing the election, pointedly did not appear on Jones’ program. Nor did he appear on 3AW’s show with Neil Mitchell, or shows hosted by broadcasters Ray Hadley, Ben Fordham or Chris Smith.

“No one’s ever won an election boycotting this program,” Jones said. 

The monotheists

The Australian Christian Lobby has also claimed its “religious freedom” campaign helped spur the Coalition victory.

“ACL’s campaign played a role in tonight’s result,” they posted on Facebook. “Thank you for praying. Thank you for acting.”

The lobby’s managing director Martyn Iles claimed prayers also contributed:

Massive success tonight for ACL’s national campaign on religious freedom. And I do mean massive. The bookies didn’t predict this. The polls didn’t predict this. Political analysts didn’t predict this.

But Australians prayed like they have never prayed before … And our volunteers did a lot of hard work.

The non-profit organisation Focus on the Family also sung the praises of prayer in delivering a Morrison government win:

After a miracle election result, we acknowledge the power of prayer (both corporate and individual) that many of you will have been a part of. May God continue to bless our government, to uphold religious freedom and strengthen families.

The mining enthusiasts

Resources Minister Matt Canavan credited the people of Queensland, and glibly thanked former Greens leader Bob Brown for doing “the best job of uniting Queenslanders since Wally Lewis. Thank you so much for coming to our great state and hearing our great people speak,” referring to Brown’s Stop Adani convoy.

The Queensland politician, who is a staunch supporter of the Adani coal mine, called the win a “hi-vis workers’ revolution”.

Have you spotted anyone else claiming credit? Send any tips and comments to [email protected].

Get more Crikey, for less

It’s more than a newsletter. It’s where readers expect more – fearless journalism from a truly independent perspective. We don’t pander to anyone’s party biases. We question everything, explore the uncomfortable and dig deeper.

Join us this week for 50% off a year of Crikey.

Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
50% off