New Senator Joanna Lindgren 'no' on same-sex marriage

Cameron Atfield 12:15 AM   The expected vote on the legalisation of same-sex marriage has picked up another 'no' vote with the appointment of Queensland's new Liberal National Party senator.

94

Latest political news

Brandis rejects extra super law for women

Attorney-General George Brandis in the Senate.

Adam Gartrell 12:15 AM   George Brandis' opposition to a bill aimed at bridging the super gender gap has put him at odds with the industry.

Harry's Australian visit to cost $115,000

Prince Harry made only one public appearance during his visit to Australia.

Adam Gartrell   Australian taxpayers will be billed an estimated $115,000 for Prince Harry's month-long army secondment.

Budget stripped $15b from families

poverty

Nassim Khadem   The combined impact of the two budgets for low and middle income people was "devastating", new analysis by the Australian Council of Social Service shows.

Comments 210

Abbott braves surf for dementia fundraiser

Tony Abbott leaves the water after his surf.

Tim Barlass   It was never going to be easy with massive waves breaking off Queenscliff beach and the bombora further out. But that wasn't about to deter Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

Support grows for medical marijuana

Medical marijuana is illegal in Australia but Queensland and Victoria have joined NSW in a $9 million trial of cannabis oil for patients suffering epilepsy, end-of-life pain and chemotherapy-related nausea.

Adam Gartrell 12:15 AM   A new survey will add to the momentum behind a bill to legalise medical marijuana.

LNP preselects Ted O'Brien to take on Palmer

LNP Fairfax candidate Ted O'Brien with party president Bruce McIver after his successful preselection bid.

Cameron Atfield 11:18 PM   The Liberal National Party has selected Ted O'Brien to take on Clive Palmer in the federal seat of Fairfax for the second time.

Comments 5

Smashing people smuggling 'the priority'

Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop

David Wroe   Destroying the people-smuggling trade remains a "national security priority" for Australia because it is being used globally to fund terrorism, Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop has said.

Miners dismiss claims of 'shock and ore' 

"You shouldn't be allowed to totally manipulate governments, which is what I think has been done here": Fortescue Metals Group chairman Andrew Forrest.

Heath Aston   Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton have pushed back at claims by billionaire Andrew Forrest and Senator Nick Xenophon that they "monstered" government out of holding a touted inquiry into iron ore.

Doubts about Pearson's model for recognition

Members of the Indigenous Committee meet in Melbourne to discuss constitution changes in 2011. From left, Noel Pearson, Marcia Langton, Patrick Dodson and Mark Leibler.

Dan Harrison   Indigenous leader Patrick Dodson has raised concerns about a proposal to recognise the First Australians outside the constitution, warning it was "very risky" to rely on the goodwill of politicians to serve the interests of Indigenous people.

Australia opposes action in South China Sea

Defence Minister Kevin Andrews said maximising Australian content will be a factor – although not the most critical – in the bids to build the submarine.

Daniel Flitton   Defence Minister Kevin Andrews has stated Australia's concern over any military build-up on artificial islands in the South China Sea - just days after a US spy plane made a show of buzzing close to a Chinese base in the disputed territory.

Comment & Analysis

Changing the nappie duties

Annabel Crabb.

Annabel Crabb 9:00 PM   As it happens, the paid parental leave changes do have some consequences that might be quite interesting for fathers.

Let's be certain about rejecting ageism

Julia Baird dinkus

Julia Baird   It's time the the media and entertainment industry grew up on women's ages.

Comments 2

Abbott abdicates leadership on refugee crisis 

The fatal flaw in the PM's latest slogan is that it assumes this refugee crisis is identical to the one he faced when he came to power.

Michael Gordon   Tony Abbott has a new three-word slogan, crafted in response to appeals for Australia to resettle some of the thousands of refugees facing death in the Andaman Sea: "Nope, nope, nope."

A bet each way: our China policy is rational

Illustration: John Spooner

John Garnaut   Far from being naive, the government's 'engage and hedge' stance is sound. But no one will publicly say there's anything to hedge against.

Comments 18

Abbott’s policy flip-flopping is a bit of a worry

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has moved ahead of Bill Shorten as preferred prime minister in the Fairfax-Ipsos poll for the first time in more than a year.

Mark Kenny   The PM’s learnt a lesson, but the danger now is he’ll keep chasing the populist angle.

Comments 245

Former jihadis are our best weapon

Joseph Wakim thumbnail

Joseph Wakim   Shutting the door on former Islamic State recruits seeking repatriation may miss a promising opportunity to block the radicalisation path.

Bashing the Greens is so last century

Greens leader Richard Di Natale: "We are the natural home of progressive, mainstream Australian voters."

Julie Szego   The Greens can rightly claim the moral high ground for their campaign against metadata retention and in other policy areas.

Comments 41

Chinese money adds to cost of housing

Paul Sheehan dinkus

Paul Sheehan   If housing affordability continues to be seen as a mirage by the young, then a social issue, in time, becomes a social problem.

Comments 65

Brandis could put an end to arts mediocrity

Arts Minister George Brandis has given outstanding performers a better chance of support through his Program for Excellence in the Arts.

Peter Craven   Arts Council money divvied up by bureaucrats might just put a broom through the arts.

Be happy, but you still need to worry

Ross Gittins

Ross Gittins   If you always felt that Don't Worry, Be Happy was a slightly unreal attitude to take towards life, the same applies to the government's budgeting.

Abbott cuts through to those who will count

Mark kenny dinkus

Mark Kenny   Tony Abbott's fortunes may have shifted on to a positive track at last after a self-imposed 14 months of electoral self-harm.

Another school will not mean more doctors

Many graduating medical students are unable to get internships.

James Lawler   Prime Minister Tony Abbott triggered a bottleneck in medical trainees, but shifty politics won't sort the mess.

Comments 3

Every child needs to love science to thrive

It is impossible to say what the jobs of the future will be, but a sound understanding of science and mathematics are sure to be key.

Ian Chubb   A world utterly reliant on science will need all children to have a reasonable grasp of the subject. So, why are we failing to inspire them?

The regrettable rise of the arts bureaucrat

Australia Council chairman Rupert Myer and Minister for Arts George Brandis view the new Australian Pavilion in Venice with Simon Mordant and Cate Blanchett.

Rodney Hall   With public servants doling out Australia Council cash, the schmoozing will have started.

Comments 11

B-1 bombers brouhaha: minor dispute, big rift

Hugh White dinkus Dinkus

Hugh White   In a showdown with China, Obama would face a humiliating backdown or an unwinnable war. Does Abbott want to be part of that?

Abbott can't sustain Victoria's raw deal

Prime Minister Tony Abbott, flanked by Victorian Opposition Leader Matthew Guy, left, and local member Michael Sukkar, stand in front of a "Blame Labor" sign.

Peter Martin   The PM's position on East West Link funds amounts to yet another broken promise.

Why no outcry over death penalty in the US?

Peter Reith.

Peter Reith   When the Indonesian government executed two Australian drug runners it was big news, but when a US court announced the death penalty for the Boston bomber, the media and the politicians had moved on.

Time to move on after torturous debates

Peter Hannam dinkus

Peter Hannam   In an ideal world, we would not have had the torturous year and a half of debate over the Renewable Energy Target.

Confessions of a dastardly double-dipper

New mothers have been added to the Abbott government's cast of villains.

Rachel Ball   Accusing new mothers of being unfair in claiming paid parental leave is both nasty and disingenuous.

Let's not get carried away with election hype

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott  is out of the doldrums.

Michael Gordon   Before we all pencil in an early election on the back of the best-received budget in memory, let's remember it was also one of the greatest escapes in Australian political history.

PM is the Steve Jobs of the political world

Peter Hartcher dinkus

Peter Hartcher   The federal budget has put Tony Abbott back in the game. The Steve Jobs of the political world, he was responsible for his fall and has now engineered his comeback.

Special features

The asylum debate we have to have

Michael Gordon Tony Abbott has damaged Australia's standing in the region, over-simplified the refugee crisis and sent an ominous warning to Labor on border protection.

Barnaby Joyce puts the world on notice

After a year and a half of near invisibility, Barnaby Joyce emerged last week. The world noticed.

Faulkner's treasure some would rather keep buried

Alan Ramsey John Faulkner returned to Canberra last weekend to put out the cat.

PM abdicates leadership on refugee crisis 

Michael Gordon Tony Abbott has a new three-word slogan, crafted in response to appeals for Australia to resettle some of the thousands of refugees facing death in the Andaman Sea: "Nope, nope, nope."

Abbott's policy flip-flopping a worry

Mark Kenny The PM's learnt a lesson, but the danger now is he'll keep chasing the populist angle.

Wooo-ooo they're halfway there

Video blog Can Tony avoid the gaffes? Can Bill step out of the shadows and offer up a viable alternative?

A bet each way: our China policy is rational

Far from being naive, the government's 'engage and hedge' stance is sound. But no one will publicly say there's anything to hedge against.

Is Islamic State winning the Iraq war?

Pressure is mounting on US President Barack Obama to rethink his Iraq strategy following the capture of Ramadi by Islamic State fighters.

Bashing the Greens is so last century

Julie Szego The Greens can rightly claim the moral high ground for their campaign against metadata retention and in other policy areas.

Chinese money adds to housing cost

If housing affordability continues to be seen as a mirage by the young, then a social issue, in time, becomes a social problem.

Same-sex marriage: Why some MPs remain silent

Judith Ireland They are the group in Federal Parliament who are the key to passing historic reform on same-sex marriage. But despite their potential power, they remain in the closet. Why are they staying quiet?

Abbott cuts through to those who will count on polling day

Tony Abbott's fortunes may have shifted on to a positive track at last after a self-imposed 14 months of electoral self-harm.

Be happy, but you still need to worry

If you always felt that Don't Worry, Be Happy was a slightly unreal attitude to take towards life, the same applies to the government's budgeting.

100 days of Abbott's 'good government'

Tony Wright After surviving a leadership spill motion in February Tony Abbott vowed "good government starts today". 100 days on, has he delivered?

Who won out of the RET deal?

Lisa Cox Fifteen months of political deadlock over Australia's renewable energy policy has been broken, but what will a new deal and new target mean for the clean energy industry?

Consumers back softer budget

Mark Kenny A happy and relaxed consumer tends to be a happy and relaxed voter and guess what? A happy and relaxed voter tends to stick with the status quo. Who knew?