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Articles tagged with: Queensland

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[29 Nov 2008 | No Comment | ]

Ross Fitzgerald hails Anderson Dawson, political trailblazer and leader of the world’s first Labor government
This week is Kevin Rudd’s Labor government’s first birthday. Whether it will form part of Australia’s collective political memory is as yet unknown.
Certainly Barack Obama’s historic American presidential victory means that, throughout the world, Tuesday 4 November 2008 will be forever etched in the global consciousness.
But there is another historic date which deserves to be remembered, and that is 1 December 1899, which heralded the world’s first Labor government. Believe it or not, this occurred in …

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[20 Oct 2008 | No Comment | ]

IT is rare for a political party to achieve a 10 per cent turnaround in the opinion polls in just six months. But this is what has happened in Queensland, where that state’s newly merged Liberal-National Party, the LNP, has injected new life into conservative politics.
This is why, on one hand, the 10-year-old state Labor Government is becoming nervous, while on the other Malcolm Turnbull – aware of the role Queensland must play if he is to become prime minister – is effusive in his praise for the LNP. Indeed, …

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[8 Sep 2008 | No Comment | ]

ROB Oakeshott’s thumping win on Saturday in the NSW north coast federal seat of Lyne may have wide repercussions. The loss of the seat held by retiring Nationals leader Mark Vaile since 1993, and by the Country-National Party since 1949 when the seat was created, spells trouble federally for the Nationals.
Despite a strong performance in the June by-election for Gippsland (which is the Nationals heartland), Oakeshott’s crushing victory in Lyne is a clear example of how, if they are offered the choice of an independent candidate with a strong track …

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[4 Sep 2008 | No Comment | ]

AT the same time as Kevin Rudd’s popularity with electors remains solid, Labor is starting to hit glitches at a state level; a near-death experience in the Northern Territory and knife-edge polls in Western Australia show political incumbency is no longer an unambiguous advantage.
In the Sunshine State, Queenslanders are almost exactly one year away from a scheduled state poll. But already Labor insiders are working through the pros and cons of calling an early election.
Party pollsters following the Northern Territory and West Australian campaigns reveal that voters weren’t annoyed only …

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[26 Jul 2008 | No Comment | ]

IN the space of a month, former Howard government minister Mal Brough has gone from being touted as a possible conservative saviour in his home state of Queensland to being a potential conservative wrecker.
A little over a month ago, Brough stormed back into public life when he romped home in a ballot for the presidency of the Queensland Liberal Party. But that’s where his triumph ended. Brough had made a mark for himself as the straight-talking, military trained politician who led the politically popular intervention into the Northern Territory’s indigenous …

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[13 Jun 2008 | No Comment | ]

TEN years ago today, the Queensland Nationals lost their last premier, Rob Borbidge.
Having defeated Wayne Goss, Borbidge seemed likely to return Queensland to long-term conservative rule. Yet just over two years later, his government fell to Labor’s new Opposition leader, Peter Beattie, for years left out in the cold by Goss.
Borbidge lost, not just because of a lacklustre governmental performance, an adverse reaction to a secret Nationals deal with the Queensland Police Union, and indecision over how to deal with Pauline Hanson’s One Nation Party, but more importantly it was …

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[2 Jun 2008 | No Comment | ]

(Friday May 30, 2008) Many thanks for that kind introduction Michael. In fact, I am just finishing book number 30 , a history of alcohol in Australia, entitled A Nation Under the Influence.
Just before I hopped on the plane, my wife Lyndal reminded me of a scathing review of my work written by one of mine many enemies in Queensland. This devastating attack concluded, “Ross Fitzgerald is one of Australia’s most prolific, yet least read, authors.”
The sad fact is that, in many ways, …

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[28 May 2008 | No Comment | ]

REFORMIST and modernising are not words usually associated with the Queensland Nationals, an organisation often still associated with the excesses of the Joh Bjelke-Petersen era, writes Ross Fitzgerald.
Yet in guiding the push to merge the state Nationals and the Liberal Party, Queensland Nationals leader Lawrence Springborg is proving to be a reformer and moderniser of non-Labor politics at a state and, possibly, a national level.
Unlike the rest of Australia, in Queensland the Nationals remain the dominant partner in the Coalition by a ratio of two to one, with the Liberals …

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[28 Feb 2008 | No Comment | ]

FOR years I have been arguing that the only hope the conservatives have of defeating Labor in Queensland is a single united party.
I have also argued that the recently re-elected National Party leader Lawrence Springborg, who at age 21 was the youngest person to take a seat in Queensland Parliament, is far and away the most talented of the state’s conservative MPs.
First elected to the one-house Queensland Parliament in 1989, the member for Southern Downs was Queensland’s youngest cabinet minister when in 1998, aged 29, he became minister for natural …