/ 03 July 2024

Albanese hits some rough seas

Image source: AAP
Image source: AAP

The Squiz 

PM Anthony Albanese is copping it from all sides this week, but his biggest issue is coming from within his own party. The fallout from Western Australian Labor Senator Fatima Payman’s decision to cross the floor for a vote in favour of Palestinian statehood last week – and her resulting suspension from the Labor Party caucus – is still bubbling along… Then on international matters, Albanese is also facing criticism from the Coalition over his decision to skip next week’s North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) security summit. And on top of that, a news opinion poll reckons his approval rating as PM has dipped to a new low

Geez I thought I had a bit on… 

Indeed, but back to the PM… Reports say Albanese’s frustrated with the Payman issue and the fact it’s taken attention away from the Stage 3 tax cuts that came into play this week… To recap, she’s a first-term Labor Senator who broke the party’s rules on toeing the party line on parliamentary votes when she voted with the Greens last week. In response, Albanese opted to suspend – rather than expel – her. But Payman’s since claimed she’s been “exiled” from the party, and reports suggest she’s considering leaving the party altogether… Albanese’s colleagues have backed his handling of the issue – one is NDIS Minister Bill Shorten who says Labor members are “giving her space”. But some members of the Muslim community aren’t happy, and a political movement has been launched to “topple” Labor ministers at the next federal election. 

Is that it?

Not quite. The Albanese Government has also drawn the ire of sheep farmers over the phasing out of live sheep exports by sea by 2028… The legislation passed on Monday, and farmers and livestock industry leaders from Western Oz – which is the only state still allowing live sheep exports – say it’ll mean job losses for farmers, shearers and truckies working in the $143 million industry. National Farmers’ Federation boss David Jochinke said the affected communities “have been sold out for political gain”… That’s because the legislation has been passed after years of lobbying from animal welfare groups and advocates after several high-profile instances of large numbers of animals dying onboard export ships. Those groups welcomed the news yesterday – Animals Australia said it was “history in the making”.

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