"What?" Katy Gallagher explains mansplain to Mitch Fifield

Judith Ireland 11:40 AM   The Senate's community affairs committee is not usually one associated with fireworks. 

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Latest political news

Joyce elected Nationals leader

If the hat fits... outgoing Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss and his replacement Barnaby Joyce.

Mark Kenny 1:01 AM   Barnaby Joyce has been elected as the leader of the Nationals in a party room meeting in Canberra, following Warren Truss' decision to retire.

PM set to reshuffle as Joyce rises

Leaving: Trade Minister Andrew Robb and Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss at Parliament House on Thursday.

Mark Kenny 1:07 AM   Malcolm Turnbull has ended his most tumultuous day as Prime Minister with a new Deputy Prime Minister and another minister hanging on by his fingernails.

Doing nothing is not an option, says Morrison

Treasurer Scott Morrison during question time - he says doing nothing is not an option when it comes to tax reform.

Peter Hartcher 5:39 AM   The tax system will automatically harvest so much extra tax from workers' pay packets that it will start to drag down economic growth over the next few years.

Morrison's tax change: From poor to the rich

Treasurer Scott Morrison modelled tax changes that would see the rich benefit at the expense of the poor.

Peter Martin 2:42 AM   The most shocking thing in the treasury analysis delivered to Scott Morrison on January 25 isn't the finding that a cut in income tax funded by a lift in the GST would boost the economy not at all.

Work for the dole barely works: review

Minister for Employment, senator Michaelia Cash.

Heath Aston 9:09 PM   The Coalition's $1 billion work for the dole scheme has improved the probability that an unemployed person will find a job by just two percentage points, a government-commissioned review has found.

New Sex Discrimination Commissioner named

Kate Jenkins

Judith Ireland 6:30 PM   Australia's new sex discrimination commissioner is Kate Jenkins, the Turnbull government announced on Thursday.

'World War III': the race to replace Robb

Alexander Downer's daughter, Georgina Downer, is a front-runner in the race to take Andrew Robb's seat.

Adam Gartrell, Richard Willingham and Mark Kenny 5:07 PM   The race is on in earnest to replace outgoing Trade Minister Andrew Robb in his blue-ribbon Liberal seat.

AFP officers have contracted Zika virus

A pregnant woman has tested positive for the Zika virus in south-east Queensland.

David Wroe 9:00 PM   Several Australian Federal Police officers have contracted Zika virus – the subject of a global health emergency – while on deployment overseas, including in the Solomon Islands to Australia's north.

Robb changed mental health conversation

Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb addresses the media during a doorstop interview at the Press Gallery in ...

Matthew Knott 11:11 PM   He's landed major trade deals and held some of the most senior roles in federal politics. But Andrew Robb's real legacy is not the most obvious.

High fees to see 45,000 families lose out

About 184,000 families would lose support in the new childcare package.

Judith Ireland 12:41 PM   About 45,000 families will be worse off under the Coalition's childcare reforms because they pay childcare fees that are higher than the upper limits of the government's new subsidy rate.

Comment & Analysis

Beware, the states are about to hike up taxes

Peter Martin dinkus

Peter Martin   Now that a GST rise is off the table, expect state governments to do the tax reform that the Federal Government won’t.

Comments 84

The breathtaking irony of Ruddock

Pope Francis signs a cricket bat he received from Cardinal George Pell at the Vatican. Pell's dicky heart prevents him ...

Elizabeth Farrelly   I've heard of being kicked upstairs but this is ridiculous. I know people get promoted to their point of incompetence, but the UN? The Vatican? These are not incompetence-friendly situations.

Australia must commit to closing nutrition gap

Stephen Simpson

Stephen Simpson   The Closing the Gap health strategy neglects food and diet, despite the benefits of improving Indigenous communities' food supplies.

Let Aborigines take control of their destiny

Illustration: John Spooner

Ben Stephens and Matthew Tyler   Australia will move forward when it cedes power to Indigenous people and demands accountability.

Comments 25

Parties need money, business supplies it

Ross Gittins

Ross Gittins   According to the Labor Party's rising star, Senator Sam Dastyari, 10 big companies control our political process. You don't need to look far to find evidence of the power wielded by "the big end of town".

Nauru pledge has captured the mood

Daniel Andrews

Josh Gordon, Analysis   Daniel Andrews' offer to "accept full responsibility" for the asylum seekers facing the prospect of deportation has undeniably had a big impact.

Public servant steps over the line

Secretary of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection Michael Pezzullo and Senator Michaelia Cash in ...

More evidence, courtesy of an extraordinary overreach by Department of Immigration and Border Protection secretary Mike Pezzullo that Australia's harsh and secretive border protection system is straining at the seams.

Could compassion politics make a comeback?

Daniel Andrews' action should not amaze. It shouldn't be extraordinary, but it is.

Liam Byrne   Daniel Andrews' offer to accept refugees due to be returned to Nauru has touched a nerve.

North Korea has pushed Seoul too far

Peter Hartcher dinkus

After North Korea tested a ballistic missile on the weekend, worried nations searched for new ways to respond to an old fear - the fear that the rogue nation will one day have a nuclear bomb and a missile capable of delivering it.

Comments 34

The real test of tax reform is still ahead

Peter Reith

It's a good idea to encourage a public discussion about increasing the GST but it's also good that it looks like the Turnbull government will dump a GST increase.

Comments 25

Killing off authors the Australian way

Illustration: Andrew Dyson

Books are central to our lives, yet the outlook for authors, their readers and Australian literary culture has never been more bleak.

Comments 13

Tax debate? What tax debate?

Peter Martin dinkus

Peter Martin   Of all the questionable claims in the tax debate, the biggest it's that it's been a debate.

Is Malcolm Turnbull insane? We'll find out

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has yet to make any hard choices.

Paul Sheehan   Some brutal things have been said about Malcolm Turnbull during his long career in public life - that he's narcissistic, bullying, volatile, duplicitous, disingenuous  - but no-one has yet proposed that he is certifiably insane.

Disregard for UN ruling a blow to human rights

Julian Assange, pictured on the balcony of Ecuador's London embassy, with the UN report that says he is being ...

Melinda Taylor   In September 2014, Julian Assange filed a complaint against Sweden and Britain before the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD).

When Turnbull's agenda was hit by realities 

Square, dink, dinks, dinkus, head shot,federal politics, federal, Heath Aston

Heath Aston   The threat of a 'double-D' is supposed to instil fear in senators, but this was a hollow threat.

Looking for a national leader

Illustration: Andrew Dyson

On the tax debate and asylum-seeker policy, we need better than what we've got.

The day our hopes for justice were dashed

A frame from Nowhere Line, an animated documentary about asylum seekers on Manus Island.

A detainee in the offshore "prison" tells the inside story of frustration, fear and hopelessness.

'It's more complex than where you live'

Monash University Professor of Politics and International Relations, specialising in Islam, Indonesia and terrorism, ...

Terrorism and migration experts have warned that radicalisation is "more complex than where you live" in response to a draft cabinet document that suggests refugees should be settled outside of major cities.

COMMENT

Tax reform a test of PM’s courage

Peter Hartcher dinkus

Peter Hartcher   What is the point of Malcolm Turnbull as Prime Minister if he is merely a more personable salesman selling the Abbott government’s policies?

How long can we keep lying to ourselves?

"Samuel" is one of 90 children, including 37 babies, who may be sent back to Nauru.

Waleed Aly   The history of asylum seeker policy in Australia will be remembered as a story of how successive governments legislated their lies to justify a world of make-believe borders and compliance.

GST: political hot potato chips away unity

Mark kenny

An unpopular policy could deal a blow to the goodwill that Malcolm Turnbull's government has so far enjoyed.

Special features

Time to go. Soon. Pre-farewells for the elders

Truss, Robb and Ruddock. Could there be a better name for a political consultancy?

The Pulse: The day from Parliament

Hello and welcome to the day in politics. Two senior ministers are leaving Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's ranks and another is under a cloud. There's never a more exciting time for a reshuffle.

Turnbull will be judged by deeds, not words

Michael Gordon There was more than one gap on display when the nation's MPs gathered to hear the Prime Minister deliver his annual Closing the Gap report on Indigenous disadvantage.

Beware, the states are about to hike up taxes

Now that a GST rise is off the table, expect state governments to do the tax reform that the Federal Government won’t.

Greatest minister in the world accepts acclaim

Poor Greg Hunt. No one deserves this. Least of all Greg.

Parties need money, business supplies it

According to the Labor Party's rising star, Senator Sam Dastyari, 10 big companies control our political process. You don't need to look far to find evidence of the power wielded by "the big end of town".

Let Aborigines take control of their destiny

Australia will move forward when it cedes power to Indigenous people and demands accountability.

Public servant steps over the line

Mark Kenny More evidence on Monday, courtesy of an extraordinary overreach by secretary of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, Mike Pezzullo, that Australia's harsh and secretive border protection system is straining at the seams.

Australia must commit to closing nutrition gap

The Closing the Gap health strategy neglects food and diet, despite the benefits of improving Indigenous communities' food supplies.

Ruddock: from wet to unknowable hard man

Sketch Early on the warm morning of January 24, 1995, John Howard and Alexander Downer were in earnest conversation in a locked room upstairs in a motel in Ferntree Gully, east of Melbourne.

Malcolm Turnbull's tax task

With the GST apparently off the table, the Prime Minister is forced to look elsewhere to deliver substantial reform, argues Mark Kenny.

The real test of tax reform is still ahead

It's a good idea to encourage a public discussion about increasing the GST but it's also good that it looks like the Turnbull government will dump a GST increase.

Turnbull lands on a snake on tax reform

Judith Ireland It's a classic game of luck. You roll the dice and depending on where you land you may get a boost - or you may get a kick in the teeth.

Flux Party offers radical model for democracy

When Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull encouraged Australia's young innovators to go out and disrupt traditional industries, he may not have been expecting anyone to propose an alternative model to the entire party-political system.

North Korea has pushed Seoul too far

After North Korea tested a ballistic missile on the weekend, worried nations searched for new ways to respond to an old fear - the fear that the rogue nation will one day have a nuclear bomb and a missile capable of delivering it.

The day our hopes for justice were dashed

A detainee in the offshore "prison" tells the inside story of frustration, fear and hopelessness.

Tax reform a test of Turnbull’s courage

What is the point of Malcolm Turnbull as Prime Minister if he is merely a more personable salesman selling the Abbott government’s policies?

Leaked revamp a threat to most national values

Michael Gordon The most powerful case against the radical revamp of Australia's resettlement program for refugees is included in the draft "cabinet sensitive" document Peter Dutton insists he has not seen.

Abbott leaves behind a dawn promise kept

Should a cure be found for diabetes type I be found, Tony Abbott must take some of the credit.

History wars fought inside ourselves

In her new book Private Lives, Public History, Anna Clark looks at how the "history wars" divided and delighted and politicised and polarised the nation.