Question Time Ahead of Time

The last week of the federal parliament of Australia before the winter recess has swiftly come around and will come to pass just as quickly to the relief of many with the politically inclined the exception to that rule. The sixweek break will mean the news will feature less loud, hysterical grabs for that period of time though the saturation of politics in the media will certainly continue with the carbon price coming into effect at the very beginning of the parliamentary holiday.

The year has so far been dominated by less than a handful of issues: the carbon tax, the Minerals Resource Rent Tax (MRRT), the Craig Thomson investigation and asylum seeker p0litics.

In recent weeks it has been basically all about the carbon price for both the Coalition and also the government. It would be a completely incredible, indeed miraculous situation if the Coalition did not in the last week before the price begins, continue to use the majority of Question Time in both chambers of parliament to pursue the government on the carbon tax. The Opposition will continue this week, as has been regular practice, to jump on any report by any organisation on predicted price impacts of the incoming price on carbon.

The ALP Government, for its part will also likely continue to focus on the carbon tax through the Dorothy Dixer, the difference here being they will continue to try and sell the message of compensation to low and middle income earners and their families, though if recent poll results are to be believed, that battle for public belief in the compensation package has been well and truly lost.

Late last week and over the weekend another asylum seeker boat tragedy unfolded with a significant loss of life. While the horrific events unfolded debate on the issue was held back. The embers of that debate are now beginning to smoulder again and will likely spark again and become another major element of the Question Time mix for both the Abbott-led Opposition and the Gillard Government as the politics of the issue begins to creep back in after an all too brief let-up. This is the only thing which looks likely to knock the carbon price off its perch in political debate this week.

Environmental issues could creep into Question Time again in a small way with the possibility that debate of the marine reserves may return for the week ahead.

That’s basically the way Question Time is likely to go for Monday, even the week with the major battle-lines having long been drawn by both sides and their approach to just an issue or two, maybe three or four at a time if we’re lucky absolutely relentlessly unless extra topical issues rear their head during the political week.

About Tom Bridge

A perennial student of politics, providing commentary for money and for free. Email me at or contact me on 0435 035 095 for engagements.

Posted on June 24, 2012, in Federal Politics and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Umm! I suspect it is going to be a week of accusations and counter accusations about refugees, with Phoney Tony and the NO Coalition further entrenching their desire to bring down a government at any cost by refusing Labor’s overturnes on resolution of the refugee issue. Just more ugliness, especially from Phoney Tony and the NO Coalition. And they set themselves as the alternative government of this country? What a tragedy that would be!

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