The 2022 federal election turned out to be one of the interesting and exciting results in Australian history. Not that you’d get an understanding of this while watching any of the mainstream media coverage on election night: their presentation and analysis of the result was as abysmal as their campaign coverage and, as soon as it became obvious their favoured political team was not going to win – far from it – it was time to start picking holes at Labor and what went wrong for Anthony Albanese. Even though Labor was the victor and Albanese had become Australia’s 31st Prime Minister.
Early on in the evening, it appeared Scott Morrison might be on track for a repeat of his 2019 victory, but as the night moved on, the Coalition was nowhere within reach of government, or even being able to cobble up an arrangement with the expanded crossbench to reach that magical number of 76 seats.
This is the largest ever crossbench ever in federal politics and while it might not be a strong endorsement of the new Labor government, it’s an excellent result for progressive politics: a government that is prepared to make progress on Indigenous recognition, end the climate change wars, create an anti-corruption commission, clean up politics, improve women’s safety; and a mainly progressive crossbench that will create a buffer between this Labor government and the Coalition opposition.
Already, the Coalition is reaching for a continuation of link with the Howard government through the likely appointment of Peter Dutton as the leader of the Liberal Party – therefore, becoming the leader of the opposition – when the electorate had just voted for a break from this style of conservative government and towards a new style of politics that works in the interests of people, and not against them.
This election result is a clear demarcation point between the divisive and destructive politics of the Liberal–National government over the past nine years. Everything must change, and the electorate has voted for change.
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