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Federal Politics

Federal Politics Wrap: September 30, 2013

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It's fascinating watching the way people react to Julia Gillard. The Opera House audience loved her to be sure. But why? Because she was a Labor leader? Because she was prime minister?

There were a lot of big issues that did not get covered - the carbon price or the decision to slash the benefits of single parents.

But those didn't come up either because of time restrictions or because no one was interested.

My own theory is that people react so strongly to Ms Gillard because they see their own experiences in hers. Maybe not on so large a scale but they see their own struggle to rise to the top of their career, the casual daily sexism in their office, their daughter's sleazy boss and so on.

But that's a discussion for another day.

For now, thanks for your company and I'll be watching the ongoing discussion with great interest.

 

And that's it from Ms Gillard.

I think it's fair to describe that as a home crowd - flowers, musics, standing ovation.

Ms Gillard is asked - by a nine year old - why she "didn't let gay people get married".

She says she understands why people are "perplexed" by her decision but says there should be "other institutions" that value life long commitments.

 

Ms Gillard is asked what she thinks of the number of women in the Coalition cabinet.

She is, like many people, "disappointed to see the composition of the current cabinet".

"To see us go so far back so quickly has been distressing," Ms Gillard says.

"I did sometimes worry in the days that I was prime minister, maybe the whole thing was sending the wrong message to young women, that it was a mug's game."

But, Ms Gillard says, even if she had a crystal ball and could see that the next woman to be prime minister would face exactly the same treatment she would still say go into politics.

The "benefits" still outweigh "the burdens", she says.

Ms Gillard is asked by 11 year old Grace what she said to motivate herself throughout her prime ministership.

"I now need to answer [the question] not using words that are inappropriate," Ms Gillard says noting the age of the questioner.

"I wouldn't give those people the satisfaction of shedding a tear."

Ms Gillard says she is not "publicly stating a preference" for whether she thinks Bill Shorten or Anthony Albanese should be the next Labor leader.

"I think it's more respectful for me to stay out of it," she says.

She is not so shy about nominating a candidate for the next female leader: "I think I may have given you an indication as to who I think is a very talented female member of Parliament."

Ms Gillard has already dipped her hat to Tanya Plibersek during the interview.

 

The first question from the audience is what advice Ms Gillard would give Prime Minister Tony Abbott on being the minister for women.

"Ask Tanya [Plibersek]", she says.

 

The last question from Anne Summers is what Ms Gillard is going to do next.

Moving to Adelaide and working at the university, writing her book and taking up a role with the think-tank the Brookings Institute, she says.

Ms Gillard says of a possible run for the presidency by Hillary Clinton in 2016: "Wouldn't it be fantastic to follow the first African American president with the first woman president?"

Ms Gillard says her reaction to US President Barack Obama's admiration of question time was: "Are you mad?"

 

The prime minister's offices in Parliament House had to be rewired for Ms Gillard's government so "the bells", as they are known, could be heard.

The bells are rung when votes are taken. Previously, the prime minister hadn't needed to be present but the minority government changed that.

Anne Summers with former prime minister Julia Gillard  at the Sydney Opera House.

Anne Summers with former prime minister Julia Gillard at the Sydney Opera House. Photo: Ben Rushton

Ms Gillard says she wishes she knew how her government could have communicated its achievements more effectively.

But leaders around the world are grappling with how to communicate with the "new tools" of social media and the relentless speed with which the media cycle now operates, she says.

Ms Gillard says she recently discovered that the person whose job it was to give her the morning's newspapers used to agonise which one should go on top because of the unfavourable coverable.

"There just wasn't one with the nicest news," Ms Gillard says.

Ms Gillard says it is ridiculous women are accused of playing the gender card.

"If she complains she's playing the victim and she's playing the gender wars....if she doesn't she really is a victim," Ms Gillard says.

It's not playing the gender wars, "it's simply asking for what is right", Ms Gillard says.

Ms Gillard says she still has the notes she made in the House of Representatives for what would become the basis of "the misogyny speech", as it's now known.

"As the days in office went on it seemed that I was getting the burdens .... and none of the benefits [of the status of Australia's first female prime minister]," Ms Gillard says.

Being "lectured" by Prime Minister Tony Abbott on sexism was the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back.

"Once I'd started it just got a life of its own," Ms Gillard says.

 

"Murderous rage" is how Ms Gillard describes the her reaction to the images that were circulated about her on the internet.

"I was surprised by it," Ms Gillard says.

Ms Gillard says there was "an underside of sexism, really ugly, violent sexism" that came out which would have come out regardless of the internet.

"I would have thought we were beyond that and it's kind of depressing that it's not."

 

Ms Gillard confirms that, yes, after the press conference she gave on the night of June 26 (when she lost the prime ministership) she had a glass of red wine and joked with staff about a twitter account "Rueben for PM" (Reuben is Ms Gillard's dog).

But, instead, Ms Gillard went to Government House and recommended that Kevin Rudd become prime minister.

Ms Gillard says her prime ministership was a "perfect political storm" of a minority government, a hung parliament, "a hard hitting" opposition, the "wild card of gender" and the instability of leadership.

 

Anne Summers with former prime minister Julia Gillard  at the Sydney Opera House on Monday.

Anne Summers with former prime minister Julia Gillard at the Sydney Opera House on Monday. Photo: Ben Rushton

Ms Gillard is asked if there is any difference between the events of June 2010 and June 2013.

Didn't Kevin Rudd just do to Ms Gillard what she did to him?

"That accusation sort of settled into the political narrative," Ms Gillard says.

It's legitimate to ask for a "leadership ballot" but not to continuously "undermine" the leader.

"Every day I was deputy prime minister I did everything I could to help the Labor government prosper," Ms Gillard says.

 

Ms Gillard says she wanted to give the Labor Party the "gift of silence" by not speaking during the election campaign.

 

Now down to the real stuff people want to hear.

Question - were you surprised by the result of the leadership ballot of June 26?

"I'd known during the course of the day that I was in tremendous difficulties," Ms Gillard says.

"We knew we were going to lose, it was a question by how much."

['We' refers to her and former treasurer Wayne Swan who is also in the audience.]

 

 

The first question is: "Are you okay?"

"Yes I am," Ms Gillard says.

"There's only one Tim," Ms Gillard says of her partner Tim Mathieson.

She says she expected speculation about her relationship with Mr Mathieson to be discussed on "women's magazines" but not newspapers.

Ms Gillard says she understands "continuing public interest" in her private life but she would appreciate "some accuracy".

 

The interview has now begun. There was loud applause for Ms Gillard when she walked on stage.

Ms Gillard will be interviewed by Anne Summers, a journalist who was also the first assistant secretary of the Office of the Status of Women during Paul Keating's prime ministership. Dr Summers now publishes the independent news magazine Anne Summers Reports.

The formal interview will go for an hour before audience members will be given the opportunity to ask questions for a further half hour.

Anne Summers and Julia Gillard at the Sydney  Opera House.

Anne Summers and Julia Gillard at the Sydney Opera House. Photo: Ben Rushton

A few Labor types are in the audience, as you might imagine, including frontbencher Tanya Plibersek, former NSW senator Stephen Loosley and union boss Paul Howes.

 

Anne Summers and former prime minister Julia Gillard at the Sydney Opera House on Monday.

Anne Summers and former prime minister Julia Gillard at the Sydney Opera House on Monday. Photo: Ben Rushton

Anne Summers with former prime minister Julia Gillard before tonight's event at the Sydney Opera House.

Anne Summers with former prime minister Julia Gillard before tonight's event at the Sydney Opera House. Photo: Ben Rushton

Hai hai.

At the airport to greet Mr Abbott was Indonesia's Foreign Minister, Marty Natalegawa.

Mr Natalegawa has not been backwards about coming forwards when it comes to his thoughts on Mr Abbott's plans for immigration policy.

When Mr Natalegawa met Foreign Minister Julie Bishop last week he again warned the Coalition government against going ahead with its plans to turn back boats.

Still, it was all smiles a little while ago when Mr Abbott and Ms Bishop touched down in Indonesia.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott is greeted by the Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa on his arrival in Jakarta on Monday.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott is greeted by the Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa on his arrival in Jakarta on Monday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

It is a fair bet that Mr Abbott will discuss the issue of people smuggling with President Yudhoyono.

Earlier today Australian authorities confirmed that three boats carrying asylum seekers have arrived during the past week.

The acting Commander of Operation Sovereign Borders, Mark Binskin, noted a report that a further group of about 80 people had arrived on Christmas Island on Monday. But Air Marshal Binskin said that because the boat's arrival fell outside the reporting period it would not be confirmed until next week.

How's that for post modern?

While we wait for Ms Gillard's event to begin let's have a look at some other goings on in federal politics.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has arrived in Jakarta for his first overseas visit.

Mr Abbott will first lay a wreath at Kalibata Heroes Cemetery. Mr Abbott will then go to the presidential palace, Istana Merdeka, where he will hold a bilateral meeting with President Yudhoyono.

Portraits of Margie Abbott, Prime Minister Tony Abbott, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and First Lady Ani Yudhoyono on a street in Jakarta on Monday.

Portraits of Margie Abbott, Prime Minister Tony Abbott, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and First Lady Ani Yudhoyono on a street in Jakarta on Monday. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Ms Gillard will be interviewed by journalist Anne Summers at the Sydney Opera House.

The event will begin in about an hour's time. Tickets sold out quickly indicating the interest in what Ms Gillard has to say.

I'm not sure how forthcoming Ms Gillard will be tonight. She will have to offer a few juicy titbits to make people who paid for a ticket to see her feel as if they got their money's worth. At the same time, Ms Gillard last week announced she had signed a deal to write her memoirs. They will be released later next year, which means she has a product to sell.

Labor MPs Wayne Swan and Julia Gillard leave the House of Representatives in Parliament House on  Thursday 27 June 2013.

Labor MPs Wayne Swan and Julia Gillard leave the House of Representatives in Parliament House on Thursday 27 June 2013. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Good evening. It's a pleasure to have your company as we listen in on the first lengthy interview former prime minister Julia Gillard has given since being replaced by Kevin Rudd as Labor leader in late June.

Ms Gillard has not been completely silent but her appearances have been few and far between and her words have been very carefully chosen.

I'm interested to hear what she has to say.

 

Sort comments by:
  • Nothing to do with the way she conducted herself? Her class and gender wars? Her lies and duplicity? etc etc etc..

    Commenter
    Michael Hamilton
    Location
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:51PM
  • Nothing to do with the way she conducted herself? Her class and gender wars? Her lies and duplicity? etc etc etc..

    Commenter
    Michael Hamilton
    Location
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:51PM
  • Warm, genuine, funny, erudite, thoughtful,
    I Just feel sad that instead of a constructive, progressive programme with the intent to improve people's lives (silly old social justice!), we are off on a journey of destructive, short sighted, heartless, money grubbing governance, robbing us of endless opportunities to improve our society. Sad.

    Commenter
    mountainmumma
    Location
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:50PM
  • Gillard attempting to air brush her history....blames anything and everyone but not herself. I find her attitude and duplicity disgusting to say the very least.

    Commenter
    Michael Hamilton
    Location
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:48PM
  • Tony who? Hacka

    Commenter
    Marty
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:48PM
  • Thank you and best wishes Prime Minister Julia Gillard. You stood up. You cared. You persevered and perhaps most importantly you made a difference. For me its not about labour or liberal just a passionate person doing right by the country.

    Commenter
    Peter
    Location
    Oz
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:37PM
    • Here, here!

      Commenter
      Jens
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 8:35PM
  • As usual, Julia Gillard conducts herself with dignity and decorum. Shame on Australia for letting her go.

    Commenter
    laksawithatwist
    Location
    Sydney
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:33PM
    • Here, here!

      Commenter
      Jens
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 8:35PM
  • "My own theory is that people react so strongly to Ms Gillard because they see their own experiences in hers. Maybe not on so large a scale but they see their own struggle to rise to the top of their career, the casual daily sexism in their office, their daughter's sleazy boss and so on".

    Spot on Stephanie!

    Commenter
    Jens
    Location
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:33PM
  • I am not a fan of KRudd. I don't know lot of politics. However Rudd kicked Howard out. Unions including Bill Shorten who just got elected into the parliament kicked our prime minister out in his first term.

    I also read that KRudd asked Gillard for few months before challenging him. But she has already written her victory speech two weeks ago.

    I blame unions and Gillard for leaving us with Abbot and not a great opposition.

    Gillard did a lot but don’t try to be a feminist or give speeches about men in blue ties or knit. Politics is a man’s world and if you want be their leader you need to be stronger than the men. Just look at most of the successful female politicians in the world.

    Commenter
    KT
    Location
    St Kilda East
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:29PM
  • You'd think if you were the ex Prime Minister and had a hairdresser as a boyfriend, you'd at least not go on national TV with that sort of re-growth. Bogan alert!!!

    Commenter
    Prankster
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:17PM
    • good grief,
      Have you noticed Anthony's different shade of brown every week of late what a pathetic comment.
      Or how about his monk spot?
      My comment should get passed if yours can!

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 8:48PM
  • She was and is fabulous .We have lost some thing incredibly valuable. I will never ever forgive Kevin Rudd.

    The only good thing is that we will all benefit from what she will be doing in the future.

    Commenter
    DIDI K
    Location
    Date and time
    September 30, 2013, 8:15PM
    • We'll said. I don't think we've lost her. her legacy continues.
      I know the trolls will be onto me, but I shed a tear watching her brilliant candid interview.
      If only she was given more of a chance.
      Steely beyond resolve is our Julia.
      And congrats to another amazing woman, Anne Summers.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 8:45PM
    • She's a nice girl and it's a pity she's gone from playing the 'gender card' to the 'victim card'.

      Commenter
      zac48
      Location
      Melb.
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 8:14PM
      • did you know that the victim card pack comes with an air brush?

        Commenter
        Michael Hamilton
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:53PM
    • It's a bit sad to see the 'usual suspects' LNP trolls continuing to spew bile at Julia Gillard. I am looking forward to the day, and it won't be long, before they are shamed into silence by the dismal performance of the man they were so keen to elect.

      Commenter
      Tom J
      Location
      Perth
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 8:07PM
    • @Hacka, Tim of Altona and all the other Pseudonyms you boys use.

      Are you being payed overtime tonight at Liberal press central? I mean you are on the Fairfax forums all day, five days a week. You can not possible have real jobs! Either that or your employers pay you to read the paper.

      Commenter
      Col
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 8:05PM
      • Agree. Maybe Hacka is just a bored worker a bored pensioner or a bored uni student or a bored liberal stooge. The last seems unlikely given how easy it for IP addresses to be linked back to posters (if anyone cares).
        Personally, I found Hacka long ceased to be of any value. Anyone that unable to take on board information contrary to their own point of view is not worth talking or listening to. I don't suggest Hacka needs to have some sort of labour 'epiphany' just that he's a (bored) zealot.

        Commenter
        Peter
        Location
        Oz
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 9:15PM
    • Trite shallow questions.Waste of time.Repetition.

      Commenter
      Kane
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 8:04PM
    • We done Julia Gillard, what a shame that you surrounded yourself with less competence.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 8:00PM
      • Gillard was way tougher than most PMs we've ever had.

        Commenter
        jofek
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:47PM
    • I really don't think this country was quite ready for Julia Gillard. She was a modern woman; something that so many still seem to struggle with.

      Commenter
      Lewis
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:54PM
    • Remember when she fell flat on her face in India. It's all over youtube, hilarious stuff. When I think of her illegitimate short reign as our first fake prime minister that is the scene I will always remember and laugh at.

      Good Riddance Julia, the sooner she stops trying to hog the media and its left wing do-gooder agenda the better this country will be.

      Commenter
      Rick
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:52PM
      • Rick, what a piece of sanctimonious tripe. The likes of you, under your tin foil hat, really show the demise of this country under the right wing agenda of Abbott and his foul ilk. Can't wait to see the YouTube clip of you getting smashed in the *ahems* by a golf club. Will roll around in fits of laughter at that one...

        Commenter
        Scott B
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:19PM
    • She will work at the Brookings Institute, the great spin doctors of the Middle East. Thanks to them, there will never be peace in the Middle East. As longs as shiites and sunnis are killing each other, they are satisfied.

      Commenter
      Peter Schmidt
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:50PM
    • Wholeheartedly agree with Julia Gillard on new media sources.

      It was interesting to watch the first two minutes of the latest Bolt Report, my interest could not stomach more of Bolt’s paid for propaganda that serves the interest of those with billions invested in coal production and in Bolt’s TV platform, shortly to include programmes: The Miner Wants a Wife and Prospecting with the Stars? Nevertheless the IPCC expert panel obviously know nothing according to Bolt’s hype and disinformation, who has no science qualifications at all. Nevertheless every qualification in the IPCC report he, Bolt used to further global warming denial indoctrination idiocy.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:40PM
      • I feel sorry for Bolts children. Poor kids growing up in that sort of environment.There should be laws against it

        Commenter
        harry
        Location
        melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:48PM
      • Pen - if you are that worried about the environment, perhaps you should get off your computer for 5 minutes, your excess usage is both a waste of energy in charging and generates unnecessary heat for the planet. I do hope you also choose to not buy imported coffee as this from your local barista. This coffee obsession is devastating for the environment.

        Commenter
        Jim
        Location
        Lara
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:31PM
      • when you can prove to me that the ippc is correct I will then give them the honour of capital letters...

        Commenter
        Michael Hamilton
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:56PM
    • This is the woman who clearly stated that leaders of parties should not be removed based on poor opinion polls. Yet that is exactly what she did to kevin Rudd in 2010; removed him from the top job because the polls were dropping in the Coalition's favour. At her lowest point the election was looking to Labor only regaining 30 seats in the lower house. The hypocrisy of this woman is breathtaking. How anyone would indeed listen to any drivel emanating from her mouth is a concern. She should keep her mouth shut and enjoy sipping Chardonnay at her new home overlooking St Vincent's Gulf.

      Commenter
      hg
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:27PM
      • Good comment

        Commenter
        Tim of Altona
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:33PM
      • Again another factually incorrect comment from a liberal - Julia used the opinion polls as an excuse for what we all know.

        Commenter
        harry
        Location
        melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:43PM
      • agreed

        Commenter
        Farmer
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:44PM
      • He was fired in part because of bad opinion polls. The overwhelming reason is that he was a terrible manager that couldn't communicate well with the party staff or ministers. Gillard was competent and could actually manage her staff and ministers despite the intense pressure of having a minority government. There is a massive difference.

        Commenter
        Patrick
        Location
        Sydney
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:48PM
      • It pays to think, not just try to generate propaganda.

        That was said at the time to save face for Rudd. The harsher facts have since come out - that he was abusive to colleagues, staff and others, and was impossible to even get to talk to as he shut out the entire caucus.

        Commenter
        Fact
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:53PM
    • Lot of angry people out there!

      Commenter
      Greg
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:25PM
      • Yep there sure are and over 4million of them voted liberal. Id say a good million of them are now angry because they voted for Tony

        Commenter
        harry
        Location
        melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:50PM
      • Yep, and I'm with Harry I expect a lot of people wondering about their vote and also allowing Rudd to replace Julia.
        the treatment she received by the MSM should be a lesson learnt.

        Commenter
        A country gal
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:54PM
    • No matter how low the LNP urgers inc Murdoch she kept her cool A very classy lady I doubt the same will be said about Abbott and his group of ex Howard hacks that are now in charge.I will enjoy the backlash phoney Tony will get from the people that were told day in day out how bad Julia was and what a dud they bought..

      Commenter
      Proud Victorian
      Location
      Sandringham
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:17PM
      • Remember people saying "But Abbott couldnt be any worse"!!..I wonder if they want that giant spatula now to scrape the egg of their faces.

        Commenter
        Archer
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:38PM
    • Gillard mention she's been travelling. Judging by the comments on the Slipper speech she spent a bit of time in De Nile.

      Commenter
      Hacka
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:16PM
      • Hacka, your anti-Gillard prattlings are well documented. Of course, and semblance of fact within these tirades is merely an unfortunately wish.

        Commenter
        Scott B
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:21PM
      • Hacka, even for you that was pathetic - which is saying something.

        Commenter
        jofek
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:49PM
    • I'm astonished that Julia Gillard allowed the sexist card to get under her skin the way it obviously had. People who are sexist do not deserve the time or the burden imposed on Julia Gillard mind.

      She would have been better dismissing the cretins for what they are.

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:12PM
      • She played the sexist card, simple. Anytime it got hard, personal attacks that every other PM and Opposition leader faced suddenly became sexism.

        Her own party is sexist by her assumption then.

        Who are the women Labor has put up for the leadership then?

        Well?

        Commenter
        Labor Luvvie
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:21PM
      • It had been going on for three years, and some of it was from parts of the mainstream media, where certain rumors are still best not spread. Sattler's idiotic questions about her relationship with Matheson, and Jones's comments (both the moronic chaff bag out to sea and her father disappointed in her) are not ones that either would say to or about a male leader - we know this because several have gone before.

        Commenter
        Simon
        Location
        Sydney
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:15PM
    • It's so sad to hear Julia was the only one to suffer personal attacks as a PM.

      I mean John Howard never had people constantly abusing him, portraying him on TV day in day out, a conga line of ex Labor failures trying to think of 'funny' lines, etc. John Howard's wife too never had people abusing her about accompanying the PM, snide remarks about her clothes or hats on official occasions, etc.

      Tony Abbott too, never mocked for doing those heinous crimes of swimming or cycling, having daughters who support him, etc.

      How sad the Libs never copped it, just Julia.

      Commenter
      How sad
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:10PM
      • I dont think they have been ever mocked for just being a dude.

        Commenter
        eeee
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:16PM
      • Good comment

        Commenter
        Tim of Altona
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:21PM
      • Yep, photographers clamouring for a pic of Abbot in budgie smugglers, the Latte set sniggering...

        course not, it's just Julia who cops it.

        Commenter
        the dude
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:26PM
      • I suspect you have no idea of the extent of it. Try googling l"Larry Pickering" and "Gillard" then look at the images the search turns up. At that point you will understand that the sexist stuff against Gillard was way worse than anything that Howard ever experienced. Simultaneously you may suddenly realise you're an uninformed idiot. It would be nice at that point if you come back here and admit your stupidity and ignorance but I won't hold my breath.

        Commenter
        Dave
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:33PM
      • Yes, perfectly expressed. The myopia of Ms Gillard believing she was the only one to be badly portrayed. I agree that what happened to her was absolutely disgusting, beyond anything justifiable as political parody but others were also treated badly. And how about this: It's not playing the gender wars, "it's simply asking for what is right". So can men play the gender card or i that perhaps "NOT right"?!

        Commenter
        Rick Blain
        Location
        Melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:35PM
      • Julia Gillard was constantly portrayed by Pickering with a dildo strapped around her neck . Am quite certain we never witnessed the equivalent when Howard was P M . How about some accuracy in comments .

        Commenter
        Teresa97
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:53PM
      • @ How sad

        Wilfully blind.

        Commenter
        Fact
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:55PM
      • @How Sad...indicative of perpetual blindness affecting the right-wing naysayers in the country. No, no, no there was absolutely no sexism against Gillard...that whole Larry Pickering thing was just harmless fun, right? The 'red box' comment a little bit of humour, yeah?

        ...right...let's see what your wife or daughter of mother would think if they were subjected to the same.

        Pull your head in, you're embarrassing yourself.

        Commenter
        Scott B
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:25PM
    • Gillard omits to tell us how she was scripted by McTernan day in day out - including her so-called misogyny speech.

      Commenter
      Tim of Altona
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:07PM
    • Sheez, Kevin must be livid that Julia Bishop has achieved more international acclaim in her 5 minutes than he did as twice PM...

      I bet she won't get drunk in a strip bar outside the UN either.

      It's a good thing Tony and the Libs are so sexist too, they'd never let a woman...oh wait, what's she doing being given that role?

      Commenter
      Classic Labor Luvvies
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:04PM
    • Thank god the Indonesians didnt put up a picture of Pommy immigrant Abbotts FAKE CHEESY GRIN on that billboard!!

      Commenter
      Steeden
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 7:03PM
      • But they put two pictures of him up instead?. What a nice looking woman the indonesias pm looks like.

        Commenter
        harry
        Location
        melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:09PM
      • @harry

        Classic hypocrisy from the Left.

        When Julia comes under fire for being incompetant and a liar ("no carbon tax"), the Libs are sexist, the press is sexist, my iphone is sexist.

        Yet, you Labor Luvvies can be as offensive as you like to the First Lady...

        Classic Labor hypocrisy, and yet you wonder why the Australian public thinks you stink and kicked you out...?

        Commenter
        Labor Luvvies
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:18PM
      • I thought Julia was a pommy immigrant as well??

        Australias casual racism??

        Commenter
        Jim
        Location
        Lara
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:21PM
    • Good portraits of Tony and Margie Abbott up in Jakarta today.

      Suspect this visit will be the start of substantially improved relationship between the two countries.

      Commenter
      Tim of Altona
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:58PM
      • More carping, but this time it's about Indonesia. Where's your self proclaimed Leftie cultural sensitivity now?

        Commenter
        Labor Luvvies
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:06PM
      • surely you cant be serious Tim. Are you the only one who does not see 2 pictures of Tony?

        Commenter
        harry
        Location
        melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:06PM
      • They haven't gone over there for a swingers party Tim.

        Commenter
        The Banker
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:10PM
    • Well Gillard is looking far more relaxed than when she was PM.

      Summers reckons the two big questions are about June the 26th and how Gillard dealt with the "disrespect". She dished it back out is the answer. No mention of 2010.

      Commenter
      Hacka
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:53PM
    • Oh please enough already about listening to Gillard. This is a timely interview to draw the attention away from the mess she left behind that Abbott is trying to clean up !! Typical labour politics !!

      Commenter
      Happy Steeler
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:50PM
      • You dont have to, it's a free country and all

        Commenter
        eeee
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:59PM
    • Groan.......the usual left wing tragics in here having their carping swipe at Abbott.These days its kind of comical, especially since left wong politics has been soundly thrashed by electors in almost all jurisdictions, both state and federal throughout the length and breadth of Australia. As for Gillard and summers?....who on earth is interested?....some die hard loopy left feminists perhaps but no one to be bothered with.

      Commenter
      Malcolm
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:49PM
      • Warning. Facts may be disturbing for liberal luddites who think their party won the majority of primary votes

        http://www.abc.net.au/news/federal-election-2013/results/party-totals/

        Commenter
        harry
        Location
        melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:59PM
      • Malcolm - seems like you are bothered enough to put a rant on this website.

        Commenter
        The Banker
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:01PM
      • @Harry... That would be disturbing to the Liberals if Australia had a first past the post voting system.

        We don't. We have a preferential system, so the count of "Primary Votes" is meaningless when discussing the result.

        The LNP won. Decisively. Deal with it.

        Commenter
        Hanging Judge Jeffries
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:15PM
      • Harry... that site shows a massive win collectively on primary vote for the conservative parties! What's your point?

        Commenter
        Rod Walloper
        Location
        Brisbane
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:28PM
    • When Julia smiles you can feel it through the photo. Tony always looks angry but I guess when you lead the worst government in history its not surprising.

      Commenter
      harry
      Location
      melbourne
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:45PM
      • OMG Harry, Abbott hasn't been in power long enough to get the stink off the walls in the Lodge, how can he lead the "worst government in history"?

        With a Leftie press, some angry at their boss Rupert but still happy to take the paycheck, you'd think Abbott has been in power for years.

        It's the first few weeks, it will take a long time to unravel the huge wastage and frivelous jobs Labor created.

        Commenter
        Classic Labor Luvvies
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:53PM
      • I agree, when Julia smiles she means it. When Tony smiles he does because his psychologists tell him he has to smile.

        Maybe Tony's psychologists could tell Tony to stop pulling the hands of the people he shakes with that there is no need to pull their hands towards his body - it looks creepy.

        Commenter
        Sharron
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:58PM
      • Sharron - I noticed that too, it's like he's trying to be dominate with a handshake and it comes across weird.

        Commenter
        Peach
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:14PM
    • I wonder how many of the left over 'Women for Gillard' people they had to bus in to fill the seats?

      Commenter
      Tim of Altona
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:45PM
      • We leave bussing in people for the caravan of incompetents

        Commenter
        harry
        Location
        melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:55PM
    • Tony Abbott and the Chief of the Defence Force have just declared that no serving member of the defence force is allowed to talk about their religion if they are a Christian.

      Well Tony Abbott I have also written to the Vatican about you and Pell and how you both condone the drowning of children and how Pell backs you up on everything you do Abbott.

      You want to stop Christianity in the defence forces Tony Abbott? You are going to be thrown out because you and your Chief of Defence just declared that you are both unChristian.

      How dare you Abbott force members of the defence force to deny their religion. Just who do you think you are Tony Abbott. You ordered your Chief of Defence to stop religion in the defence forces you scum of the earth.

      God is watching you Tony Abbott.

      Commenter
      Sharron
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:45PM
      • After that comment I suspect that someone else at the other end of the spectrum is watching you.

        Commenter
        Tim of Altona
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:56PM
      • I am a Christian and Tony Abbott and his defence chief hurley have now shown that they only believe in themselves.

        But then again we all knew that tony abbott has a problem.

        Commenter
        Sharron
        Location
        Canberra
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:02PM
    • I see the hate Labor, hate the Coalition usual farce has started. When will the mushrooms learn that the major parties re of the same compost?

      Commenter
      Pen of hrba
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:44PM
      • you must be a friend of the Chief of the Defence Force., anti-religion scum!

        Commenter
        Sharron
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:54PM
    • Where was Scott Morrison?Why didnt HE go to Indonesia??...Seems like Abbott isnt serious about "Stopping the boats" after all.

      Commenter
      Archer
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:36PM
      • Scotty has been left behind to attend to the budget emergency.

        Commenter
        harry
        Location
        melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:47PM
    • Gillard can tell pommy Abbott that more children drowned under his watch in only three weeks than there were in 6 years of Labor.

      Commenter
      Steeden
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:35PM
      • Pommy Gillard can tell Pommy Abbott that 1,400 odd people have drowned on Labor's watch vs the 30 odd under the Coalition's..

        Commenter
        Tim of Altona
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:42PM
      • Gillard is Welsh you dill

        Commenter
        J Walker
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:49PM
      • Since when did Labor hold the high moral ground on Asylum Seekers?

        More kids were behind razor wire under Labor than Howard.

        Fact.

        Anyway, it's sad the years of Labor and untold opportunity to solve the issue and all Julia and Rudd came up with was a thought bubble on PNG.

        Both sides should find a solution, get the ones here out of detention and working in the regional areas for a start. They won't cost us a thing when they're working in regional industries, the jobs no Aussies have the ticker to bother with.

        Commenter
        Classic Labor Luvvies
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:58PM
    • The Gillard and Summers act is so passé it might do better in New Zealand.

      Commenter
      zac48
      Location
      Melb.
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:31PM
      • the event sold out in a couple hours. Imagine Tony after his one term in office - do you think anyone would pay to hear him talk. Now THATS funny!

        Commenter
        harry
        Location
        melbourne
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:50PM
      • Anne Summers, who once sponged a job off Paul Keating, interviewing a failed pollie.

        Nice.

        Grab a soy chai and turn off your emails kids, the public won't know you're bludging in your job anyway.

        Commenter
        Classic Labor Luvvies
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:55PM
      • @ harry...The pie night at the Collingwood Football Club sold out in half the time. Both Gillard and Collingwood attract a peculiar type of pathological supporter.

        Commenter
        zac48
        Location
        Melb.
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:58PM
    • I'm here to read what PM Gillard has to say, not read the itinerary of PM Abbott.

      Commenter
      Bennopia
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:23PM
    • I hope Tony shows Indonesia a closed cheque book that has the word Indonesian Aid on the cover!

      I am sure Mr Marty Natalegawa will quickly change his tune!

      Commenter
      4Ken
      Location
      Auburn
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:18PM
      • And will the Indonesian President show our PM and cheque book called Aussie Beef?

        Commenter
        crisrophles
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:33PM
      • Hear Hear 4Ken!

        We need to stop treading on eggshells around the Indonesians and tell it like it is.

        Commenter
        Hanging Judge Jeffries
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:05PM
      • ....and PM Abbott gives the Indon President a sneek peek at the title deeds to 1 million acres of prime Australian grazing land.

        Commenter
        Tim of Altona
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 7:18PM
    • I'd rather poke pins in my eyes than hear anything from Gillard.

      Commenter
      the_Truth
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:18PM
      • What are you doing reading this article then? I hate The Bachelor but I don't go onto all the Bachelor forums and articles going on about how much I hate it. Sometimes I wonder if you Liberal lovers don't just love sitting there in your dark rooms searching out every last article about Labor so you can crow about how much you hate them.

        Commenter
        Jason
        Location
        Sydney
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:27PM
      • Switch to channel 24 and start poking mate. Please

        Commenter
        Rusty
        Location
        Narre Warren
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:35PM
      • Oh Julia you were great! The benefits that we all have because of your term. Thank you so much :) We will get rid of this PM and their team soon. People are already start to regret voting them in. Go on Julia.. your doing well.

        Commenter
        Meh1
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:45PM
      • Can I supply the pins...?

        Commenter
        Scott B
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:26PM
    • is this about the tenth "frist time Gillard speaks" there has been or what?

      Commenter
      andrew
      Location
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 6:15PM
      • correct...Julia Gillard speaks!!!!!...Groan....its about time she moved on quietly and confronted the fact that she was the most unpopular Prime Minister in Australia's history (AND the most incompetent.And after Whitlam and Rudd.... that is saying something .)

        Commenter
        Malcolm
        Location
        Sydney
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:51PM
      • The first time since June she has spoken, and you are still bemoaning that. You are a piece of work...and the 'most unpopular PM' surely should go to Howard. Tell me again how did he go in his own seat in the 07 poll? Wake up and smell what you're shoveling. You are probably thinking Abbott is doing a brilliant job, such is your delusion.

        Commenter
        Scott B
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:15PM
      • I don't care if it's the first of a hundred, one amazing and selfless leader.

        Commenter
        A country gal
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:41PM
    • Did Gillard decide to do this interview when Rudd was out of the country ?

      Commenter
      Hacka
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      September 30, 2013, 5:40PM
      • What does that mean Hacka? As usual, just trying to find some absurd angle. Worry about your buddies Brandis and Joyce, or how embarrassing Bishop and Abbott are in Indonesia

        Commenter
        Rusty
        Location
        Narre Warren
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:21PM
      • Have you forgotten Rusty that every time Gillard left the country over the past three years, Rudd seemed to pop up on our TV screens ?

        Often it was to tell everyone to take a chill pill, or push that Mr Positive image.

        Commenter
        Hacka
        Location
        Canberra
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 6:28PM
      • No when Abbott is.

        Hacka at least Ms Gillard was very much visible not like Tony Abbott and his invisible friend C02

        Wheres Tony ? Thats the PMs name now isnt it? He is Australia Loch Ness Monster

        Commenter
        Buffalo Bill
        Location
        Sydneys Northshore
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:18PM
      • Buff - are you now having a go at Abbott for meeting the Indonesians, as promised during the campaign ?

        Commenter
        Hacka
        Location
        Canberra
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:30PM
      • What on earth was that about, Anthony got you working on unpaid overtime, getting a bit deluded?

        Commenter
        A country gal
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:39PM
      • No not at all, that is something that a PM should do as a matter of course not because it was promised during a campaign, though im sure that Peta (PMO) cleared him to go first.

        As I suggested earlier that Ms Gillard was very visible and Tony is Australias Loch Ness Monster

        Commenter
        Buffalo Bill
        Location
        Sydneys Northshore
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 8:44PM
      • Buff, Lock Ness Monster, I love it.
        I'm stealing that moniker for AJA. Hope I have your permission.
        LOL so apt.

        Commenter
        A country gal
        Location
        Date and time
        September 30, 2013, 9:00PM
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