Well the people of New South Wales have sent a clear message to the out going Labor Government.
The last time I wrote here was just after the Federal Election in November last year and the Federal Labor Party narrowly got into government with the now famous hung parliament.
New South Wales Labor has suffered an overwhelming loss and has lost power.
What will this mean for New South Wales?
Well that is hard to know. The Liberal Party have not given us a lot of information on what the plan for NSW. They certainly have a big job ahead of them to bring NSW back to its previous standing as the “Premier State” and the leading state economy in Australia.
With a predicted majority of 66 seats in the lower house the Liberals will have a lot of power but will they get the same power in the upper house.
As we saw with the Howard Federal Government, such absolute power is a dangerous thing. As Labor have said in their campaign, such great power is like a blank cheque. Lets hope that they don’t get a blank cheque or if they do that they use it wisely.
Kristina Keneally while retaining her seat has stepped down as leader of the Labor party. I guess it is understandable. No one wants to be Opposition Leader after being Premier. So what will this mean for the next Labor leader and who will take on this poisoned chalice. Only time will tell.
I am sure there will be plenty happen in the coming months and hopefully the Liberal Party will step up to the plate and put things right in the state of New South Wales.
Poor Kristina Keneally doesn’t seem to be having much luck lately.
First David Campbell leaves the front bench to deal with personal issues after his secret gay life is exposed and then she looses two more Minsters in one day. What can go wrong next? I know lets just insult the whole of Australia by down playing Barry O’Farrell’s Kokoda trail achievement as something so easy even Miss Australia has done it. Nice work Kristina.
Kristina Keneally made the gibe at Barry O’Farrell saying “Well, so did Miss Australia – so congratulations, Barry.” after he had used his completion of the trail as proof of his personal strength in a media interview.
Clearly Kristina doesn’t fully understand the significance of the Kokoda Trail to Australia. By down playing Barry O’Farrell’s effort she has insulted not only all Australians but the soldiers that that made this trek out of necessity during World War II and people who have completed the Kokoda Trail since then. She has also insulted all Australian women by suggesting that if a women, and more particularly 2007 Miss Australia winner Caroline Pemberton, can complete the trail then I can’t be so hard.
I would suggest that perhaps Kristina needs to do the Kokoda Trail and even though she claims it is something she would like to do when her kids are older I would suggest that the sooner the better. Until then maybe a bit of research about the Kododa Trail and perhaps the broader subject of Australia history would be in order.
Perhaps some research of the people that Barry O’Farrell did the trail with wouldn’t have gone astray either as Caroline Pemberton is an experienced adventure racer and one of his other fellow participants was Liberal Upper House MP Charlie Lynn has completed the trail 59 times, so Barry O’Farrell was not among beginners by any means.
After the shock loss of two Ministers when Ian McDonald and Graham West resigned from their Ministries the Keneally Government was in a state of panic. Not only did it have to fill two more ministries but it will now have to go into damage control again over Ian McDonald’s alleged travel rorts.
The New South Wales Labor Government would seem to have quite a task ahead of them if they are going to have any success in the next state election in March 2011. Kristina Keneally certainly hasn’t made the task any easier and has perhaps shown how out of touch she is with the people who she claims to represent.
I certainly look forward to an interesting election campaign that seems to be developing in New South Wales. I am sure it will provide many interesting points for discussion.
It isn’t only Britain’s politicians who are rorting their expenses. It seems Australia’s politicians are up to it as well. Particularly in Queensland.
But this isn’t the great scandal that it has become in Britain, far from it they are allowed to spend their expenses allowance on private expenses.
Now, this is not what their expenses allowance is meant to be for. It is meant to cover the expenses in supporting their own electorates. Things like supporting local events, fundraising, and other such expenses. However, politicians in safe seats would seem to think that they don’t need to use these funds in a way to benefit their electorate and gain the favour of their constituents.
One Queensland politician Whitsunday MP Jan Jarratt, who is also Parliamentary Secretary for Employment and Economic Development, has used this money for personal expenses. Ms Jarratt’s statements indicate she has transferred amounts of between $1000 and $3000 to her husband and gave her son amounts between $200 and $500.
She has also used this money to pay her credit card bill as well as $2800 in council rates for her Cannonvale home and $1160 council rates for her Townsville investment property.
The Queensland Parliamentary rules state “An allowance is paid to each Member. It is to be expended at the total discretion of the Member” and the expenses are taxed, but this does not excuse politicians from spending these allowances in an appropriate way and in the manner in which they were intended to be used. After all, even though they are given the total discretion these funds are meant to benefit their electorate not their financial situation and their families.
A spokesman for Queensland Premier Anna Bligh said there was nothing new about MPs spending allowances how they liked. “This has been the case for many years.”
However, Opposition Leader John-Paul Langbroek said he hoped MPs were spending their allowances wisely.
“The allowance system in Queensland is meant to be used by members judiciously in the servicing of their electorates,” he said.