Liberal National Coalition
Julia Gillard announced on January 30 2013 that the 2013 Federal election was to be held at September 14 2013. This however clashed with the Yom Kippur holiday. After Kevin Rudd's return, the election was held on 7 September 2013.
Labor's Kevin Rudd won the 2007 Federal Election and ended 11 years of Coalition rule along with John Howard losing his own seat of Bennelong. Despite having left government with a budget surplus, the returning Labor government went back to deficit. He made a formal apology to the stolen generation and increased military spending due to the threat of China. Close to the 2010 Federal Election, there had been reports that Rudd's performance was going down with concerns about the next election along with support from the Labor caucus. Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard challenged Rudd in a leadership spill and won unopposed. This was because Rudd believed that he did not have the numbers to win the spill and resigned as prime minister but remained as foreign minister. In February 2012 shortly after coming back from Washington DC, Rudd resigned as foreign minister and challenged Gillard for the leadership of the Labor party. He believed that he was knifed from the leadership in 2010 and wanted to continue the work that the Australian people voted him to do. He lost the leadership spill 71-31 but remained as a backbencher for Griffith.
Shortly after the Gillard took power and became Australia's first female prime minister, she led Labor in the 2010 Federal Election but had a hung parliament and lost her party's overall majority. She only managed to hang on to power due to the support of the crossbench (Independents and Greens).
Gillard had continued the Labor Party’s trend of budget deficits. Ever since Labor was in power in 2007, budget surplus became deficits and debt was rising in billions with $220 billion in total deficits including the forecast over the next four years. Former treasurer Wayne Swan had constantly promised a surplus but showed more care for the Australian people which was part of Labor’s left wing political policy of government ownership. Gillard imposed a mining tax, carbon tax on polluters and a Gonski plan which provided billions of dollars to schools. She cut border protection spending and used it on accepting boat refugees and spent $6 billion on detention centres. She also set up a National Disability Insurance Scheme at the expense of cutting the $5000 baby bonus for mothers. Swan promised many times for a surplus and less debt but kept on spending and ended up facing an “unexpected” budget black hole worth over $12 billion. He also promised that the government will be back to surplus in 2017 as 2013's budget is at $18 billion deficit. Gillard refused to back down and stood her ground believing that she and her Labor government are doing the right thing for Australia. sSe also has patience as striving for surplus too early will cut jobs and take Australia “through a European road of savage austerity”. Overall, she believed that she saved so many jobs in Australia by not cutting back and remained on deficit.
Gillard sees Abbott as a “policy weak man” and believed that he will make huge budget cuts causing huge job losses if he is elected. In a parliamentary speech she accused and labelled Abbott a misogynist (a man who hates women) with evidence like Abbott's past remarks about women and when during the anti carbon tax protest, Tony stood next to signs that said “Ditch the witch” and “A man’s bitch” which seriously offended her. For the national broadband network, she offered it for free and stated that Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull (shadow minister for communications and broadband) will make it expensive with slow speeds and only available in limited areas. She made a big warning to the Australian public that if Abbott was elected, he will “cut to the bone” in funding and reduce the country going backwards with deep unemployment just like the Liberal state premier in Victoria. While the Liberals were impressed with Abbott's 2013 budget reply speech, Gillard was barely impressed believing that Abbott will do anything to be elected and end up failing to deliver. Gillard also pointed out Abbott’s remark of climate change as being “a load of crap” and is sceptical about him being “loose with the truth” and believed that he struggled to answer properly, told lies and hid the truth while talking to the media. Throughout her years as prime minister, Gillard managed to endure Abbott's constant criticism and destructive feedback in both parliament and media.
Abbott believed that Gillard is part of the “faceless” people of a “hopeless” government that sacked their own Prime Minister Kevin Rudd. He also pointed out that Gillard has had many broken promises like tax cuts, no carbon tax and the promise of a budget surplus which she and Wayne Swan mentioned over 500 times. Abbott was appalled when Gillard announced the carbon tax when before the election, she clearly said on national television “There will be no carbon tax under the government I lead”. He was also disappointed with Julia when a boat load of refugees arrived in Western Australia without detection and questioned her negligence of border protection. Abbott also questioned Gillard’s spending spree and affordability like the Gonski plan for school and the fast increase in defence spending. Due to countless spending, Abbott was disappointed with Gillard for making the states pay for the big plans and projects while being hesitant on providing federal funding. For the national broadband network, he believed that Gillard providing it for free will leave a $90 billion debt and promised to deliver a faster and cheaper way than Gillard’s delayed version. Overall, Abbott believed that Gillard’s Labor government will never be able to deliver a budget surplus. Abbott also believed that Gillard has led “a bad government” with no unity which had two failed coup attempts by her own Labor members that resulted in four ministers moving to the back bench. This occurred after another leadership spill which Gillard and Swan won unopposed in 21 March 2013.
Gillard's opinion polls went down after her announcement of the election date. There had been growing pressure for her to resign after a series of Labor defeat including the 2013 election in Western Australia. Rudd supporters believed that they have the numbers for Rudd to win. Rudd supporters believed that Rudd will bring Labor back up in the polls. This is to prevent a possible landslide Labor defeat (similar to 2012 Queensland election).With Abbott's coalition in government, Labor feared that Abbott will follow the British Conservative Party's policy of austerity which is to cut all funding to the bone and make Australia go backwards into recession (similar to the Victorian Coalition Government). Rudd agreed to contest the spill on 26 June 2013 (same night as game 1 of State of Origin). Both Rudd and Gillard agreed that the loser will quit politics after the next election "once and for all". Rudd won the spill 57-45 with Anthony Albanese being the new deputy prime minister and minister for broadband up against Malcolm Turnbull.
The National Broadband Network is a hot topic with a political fight to the death. Labor proposed having fibre optic cables connecting to all houses at 1000 megabits per second. Turnbull's coalition plan offered a cheaper and quicker version with fibre optic cables going in a street corner box with copper cables connecting to households from the box. It is at the speed of 25 to 50 megabits per second and the reason for the downsize is to make the budget balanced and help make it affordable for low income earners along with higher speeds in the future. In comparison to today's internet, 25 megabits per second is "five times faster than the current speed". Turnbull defended his NBN plan and had backed up evidence that around the world, companies like at&t and Deutsche Telekom have provided great service similar to his plan. In response, Labor sent a team around the world to promote the Coalition's broadband plan which resulted in laughter and rejection by the fact that Abbott had offered 25 megabits per second which would be delivered at 2019 when other countries have faster internet. Labor tried to expose the fact that Turnbull wants to charge Australians thousands of dollars. The Coalition had promised 100 megabits per second by 2019 with a smaller budget and poor areas getting the highest priority as opposed to Labor's claim. Turnbull also fought back saying that a household having fibre to the premise with 1000 megabits per second will cost $20,000 a month.
Gillard and her loyal supporters like Swan and Garrett moved to the backbench. Rudd's return meant that more female members became ministers.
Former Labor leader Mark Latham critisised Rudd's return as "jihad of revenge". He believed that Rudd sabotaged Labor's 2010 election campaign and caused a split in the caucus. To stop the Labor party's division, he suggested kidnapping Rudd and send him to Albania with a note telling him not to return after the 2013 election. The division in Labor existed with over 1/3 of the caucus refusing to work with Rudd after his return to power. Looking at the Labor caucus, Latham believed that the caucus is unmanageable due to 25 of it's members are "factional warlords".
Under new treasurer Chris Bowen, growth went down to 2.5% from 5.75%, unemployment went up 6.25% and the budget deficit went up from $18 billion to $30 billion with a $33 billion forecast of deficits.
The campaign had started off with Rudd in Western Sydney while Abbott was in Adelaide. Abbott toured factories while Rudd toured schools. Abbott also went to Tasmania to promote more jobs as the state has a high unemployment rate. The seat of Greenway is a marginal seat with Liberal candidate Jaymes Diaz struggled with the interview and failed to provide a six point plan to stop the boats and the question about company tax. Diaz's fumbled interview went viral online with more searches than his leader Abbott. A week later, Diaz was out campaigning and met Tony Abbott while ignoring the media who constantly asked him about the six point plan to stop the boats. Abbott then went off to Queensland along with Campbell Newman (Queensland premier) and campaigned against Labor's insulation plan at Rudd's own seat at Griffith. Rudd went to Tasmania to campaign in an attempt to save Labor from losing it's seats as Tasmanian polls prefer the coalition. Abbott met with Indigenous Australians and wanted to form an Indigenous council and have them fully recognised in the constitution. The Greens had started their campaign at Victoria and vowed to have Adam Bandt to remain as the member for Melbourne and have a second Victorian Green senator. Former Queensland Premier Peter Beattie was selected to run as Labor candidate for Forde in Queensland. Despite, having supported Gillard and criticised Rudd, he left behind his past and agreed to work alongside Rudd. Rudd also campaigned in Bennelong (John Howard's old seat) and helped Labor candidate Jason Yat-Sen Li. Li knows five languages and with a big Asian community in Bennelong, Rudd is confident that Labor will win the seat of Bennelong.
Julian Assange (trapped in the Equadorian embassy) set up his own Wikileaks Party and aimed to become a senator representing NSW. It is likely that his party will take votes away from the Greens but the Greens still support Assange and transparency. Questions about whether he will win or how he will get out of the Equadorian embassy for the senator job remained unknown.
On 11 August 2013, both Rudd and Abbott had a debate live at the National Press Club in Canberra. The winner of the debate was unclear and Rudd was accused of cheating by bringing in notes. Abbott dodged the question of how funding for big projects will happen while Rudd gave the promise of passing a bill for marriage equality within 100 days after being elected into a new term. Abbott dismissed claims that the marriage equality promise will help Rudd win the election.
Abbott campaigned in Victoria and New South Wales while Rudd campaigned in Townsville where he visited a school and an army base to thank the soldiers for their service. Abbott was disappointed when a Coalition MP told the media that the incoming Coalition Government will break it's promises due to Labor's budget black hole. Treasurer Chris Bowen and finance minister Penny Wong showed their statistics to challenge the coalition said that Labor will be back in surplus in 2017. Malcolm Turnbull promoted a $100 million mobile blackspot upgrade to improve mobile coverage for accident prone and bushfire areas.
Rudd fully committed to marriage equality while Abbott fumbled his way around the topic and described it as "The fashion of the moment". While Rudd still visited schools, Abbott was out campaigning in Longman and was in hot water for describing Fiona Scott (Liberal candidate for Lindsay) "abit of a sex appeal" which was criticised by Labor with Mark Latham describing Abbott having "beer goggles" at the time. Abbott advised the Liberal Party to make the Greens their last preference instead of Labor. This was Abbott's hope to prevent Bandt from retaining his Melbourne seat and under no circumstances work with the Greens should he have a minority government. He also told Rudd to "man up" and join him in a fight against the Greens. The Greens however were confident that they will retain the seat of Melbourne along with more senators.
Peter Beattie was burnt in the polls as 60% of people in Forde preferred their current LNP member Bert Van Manen. Abbott was campaigning in Melbourne while Rudd was at Perth and later went to Adelaide. Rudd promised half a billion dollars for the car industry to save jobs but the coalition says it a distraction to all other issues of the election campaign. The coalition was pressured to release their reports on what they will cut and when they will reach surplus. Abbott promised that all women who give birth after June 2015 six months of leave on full pay. He also wanted a crackdown on crime by having a minimum 5 year sentence for smuggling guns into Australia and commit $100 million for Customs to have extra screening. While Abbott was confident that he'll win the election, Rudd promised to commit $50 million for stroke sufferers.
Abbott promised $25 million for upgrading Great Ocean Road and $5 million for the Brisbane Broncos club for extra facilities and training areas. Early voting began on 20 August for those unable to vote on September 7. During a debate between the Labor member and Liberal candidate in Wakefield, the Liberal candidate was in the spotlight after he failed to answer questions about Liberal Party's policies.
The second debate happened on 21 August at Brisbane at the People's Forum with undecided voters watching. The debate got very intense to the point where Abbott asked "Does this guy (Rudd) ever shut up?". Rudd tried to warn the public about Abbott's big cuts to jobs while Abbott talked about going back to surplus and wanted to be an infrastructure prime minister which meant Australia having 21st century infrastructure. Rudd attacked Newman's Queensland Government about the cuts it made and used this as an example if federal Liberal is elected.
Rudd campaigned in Western Sydney while Abbott was in Darwin taking part in army training. He wanted to spend $20 million to buy boats and prevent them from being used by people smugglers and asylum seekers. This move was considered rubbish by Labor. Rudd's campaign was suspended on 24 August as he went straight back to Canberra to meet with security officials about the crisis in Syria involving chemical weapons. Abbott had a briefing about Syria's crisis on the next day. The polls had turned to the Coalition with polls in Griffith suggesting that Rudd might lose his own seat just like John Howard in 2007. Abbott refused to believe the polls and described this election as a "very close race". Rudd promised $10 million for the National Broadband Network to help the broadband sector. Abbott was campaigning in Adelaide along with Christopher Pyne (Shadow education minister and manager of opposition business) and promised $7.5 million for a leasure centre.
On 25 August, Abbott made a big push by starting his official coalition campaign. At the LNP conference in Brisbane, he wanted defence spending back up along with a surplus. Labor questioned about who will be victims of the coalition cuts. Labor had predicted that a coalition government in the next decade will represent a very small percentage of the economy meaning deep budget cuts. The coalition had began settled with the fact that returning to surplus in the first term would mean deep austerity cuts and a surplus would not happen until the coalition's second term in government.
On 28 August, both Rudd and Abbott had their third and final debate at Rooty Hill at Sydney. It was a major battle with some saying that Rudd won while other say it was too late as the polls turned to the Coalition. Rudd wanted high speed rail along the East Coast of Australia and had an argument with Premier O'Farrell over the decision to close Garden Island naval base in Sydney and move the ships to Queensland. O'Farrell complained that this move was desperate and thousands of jobs will be lost if the base closed. Rudd wanted to move ships up north to combat potential terrorism and turn Garden Island for cruise ship industry as tourism. Rudd was at Darwin visitiing a new hospital but the Northern Territory Government forbid the media to come in. Abbott was in Townsville to campaign and also participated in a sprint and also promised $20 million to floodproof the local roads. He ditched plans to campaign in Western Australia to campaign in marginal seats in Western Sydney.
While the polls still headed for the Coalition, Rudd made last minute promises and warned that an Abbott Government could get Australia into recession and damage the AAA economy. He promised $4.4 billion tax breaks for small businesses, $6000 for apprentices and Commonwealth takeover of TAFE. Abbott denied big spending cuts after being elected and dismissed Rudd's claims and promises as a "powergrab" for state responsibilities. While campaigning, a Reserve Bank board member said that Rudd had "trashed his credibility in the last few years, and done the Labor party enormous damage". Abbott then went to Sydney's Holsworthy Army Base to promote his defence policy while Green's Christine Milne had a talk at the National Press Club and said that she never met Abbott and was keen to prevent the Coalition to gain full control of the parliament. Rudd visited a training centre at Queensland to promote more support for apprentices. Abbott then went to Adelaide to promote more powers for the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission and then to Sydney to promote his intention to cut company and carbon tax to ease the burden on small business. Labor fought back with the highlight of the National Broadband Network and it's 1000 megabits per second compared to the Coalition's 25 to 100 megabits per second. Labor also set up a website to show the extent of Abbott's budget cuts in every part of Australia. Abbott's paid parental leave scheme was under fire as Labor questioned about whether hard working Australians should pay their taxes for rich women having a baby. Rudd was questioned from a pastor about gay marriage and the discussion included the bible. Rudd responded by saying that the bible talked about slavery being natural. There was backclash among christians about Rudd's gay marriage support. Clive Palmer (Leader of the Palmer United Party) refused to comment on the issue as his party was in no position to decide on the issue yet. Palmer made a claim that Rupert Murdoch's former wife Wendi Deng was a Chinese spy. He thought about personally sueing Murdoch and "bringing him to account". At the National Press Club, Bob Katter spoke against the coalition for slashing 2000 jobs in the fishing industry, 5000 jobs in the tabacco industry, 1500 jobs in the dairy industry and 1500 jobs in the sugar industry.
After alot of pressure from Labor to get the Coalition to release it's actual costings of it's budget, Joe Hockey (Shadow Treasurer) released the actual costings on September 5. He announced a further $9 billion of savings on top of $31.6 billion of savings along with $4.5 billion of foreign aid cut in order to fund infrastructure. He also promised a $16 billion reduction in government debt. Greens leader Christine Milne wanted a new mandatory rule that would make all political parties to release their costings earlier in the election campaign instead of the Coalition's last minute move to release it's own costings.
On September 6, Rudd slammed the Coalition about it's last minute intention to propose internet censorship 24 hours before the election. Ancestry.com revealed that Rudd's ancestors were convicts while Abbott's ancestors were shipyard builders who build ships for convicts to sail for Australia. 14.7 million Australians have been registered to vote and expect claim that there will be a big increase in donkey (invalid vote). The polls around the country showed that the Coalition was in the lead. Voters of the minor parties chose Wikileaks and other small parties to make sure the major parties are honest and transparent. Treasurer Chris Bowen's seat at McMahon was at risk along with the seat of Kingsford Smith where Labor's new candidate had been struggling.
On Election Day (September 7 2013), Abbott and his family casted their vote at Freshwater Beach in Sydney. Bill Glasson (LNP candidate for Griffith) was not confident in winning the seat from Rudd and relied on preferences. The Greens were confident that they will pick up more seats in the senate and secure Melbourne for the second time. Abbott was touring Southern Sydney (a safe Labor area) and was forced to leave after he was confronted by angry Labor supporters. Newspoll tipped that Abbott might win 40 seats.
Tony Abbott and the Coalition won the election with an overwhelming majority.
- Barnaby Joyce (Former Queensland senator) won the seat of New England after voters were unimpressed with Tony Windsor supporting Labor after the 2010 Election
- Peter Slipper (Former House Speaker) tried to recontest his seat of Fisher. After a scandal of disturbing text messages about women, he lost the seat with only 1207 votes (1.6%) while Liberal National's Mal Brough won with a 5.9% swing
- Adam Bandt retained the seat of Melbourne after hard campaigning for the Greens.
- Craig Thomson (Former Labor MP) tried to recontest his seat of Dobell. He became an independent after a credit card scandal using union money on prostitutes and brothels. He continued to deny it despite being expelled from the Labor Party but the evidence were shown nation wide. He lost his seat with only 3444 (4%) votes while Liberal's Karen McNamara won with a 5.7% swing.
- Bert van Manen retained his seat of Forde defeating Labor's Peter Beattie (Former Queensland Premier)
- Jaymes Diaz narrowly lost the marginal seat of Greenway. He refused to accept the lost and banned the media from entering his campaign headquarters.
- Clive Palmer had a hard fight for the seat of Fairfax in Queensland and was three votes ahead on September 18. The votes had to be recounted after Palmer was less than 100 votes ahead. After the recount, Palmer was 53 votes ahead and now headed for parliament.
- John Alexander retained his seat of Bennelong after a hard fought campaign from Labor's Jason Yat-Sen Li
- The Wikileaks Party failed to gain senate seats. Julian Assange who ran for senator for Victoria only had 1% of the vote.
- Kevin Rudd delivered his concession speech and confirmed that he will resign as leader of the Labor Party. Bill Glasson (LNP candidate) launched a hard campaign at Rudd's seat of Griffith and had the most votes in the first preference counts before being Rudd prevailed over the preference votes.
- Tony Abbott had alot of hate both prior and after the election. Labor supporters labelled him as the Australian version of George W Bush. They also pointed out about his National Broadband Network plan, education funding, his plan on internet censorship and budget cuts that will cause huge unemployment and send Australia into recession. People were also concerned about his refusal to support gay marriage and that a equal marriage law might not happen for the next three years. Greens were also the enemies of Abbott due to his promise of scrapping of the carbon and mining tax, lack of care for the environment and his education funding. The Greens also criticised Abbott's investment in infrastructure and wanted the billions of dollars to be used on investing more in public transport and high speed rail.
- Bill Shorten and Anthony Albanese had placed their bids for the Labor Party leadership while Chris Bowen was acting Labor leader.
- Tony Abbott had announced his new cabinet on September 16. Julie Bishop became foreign minister and was the only woman on Abbott's front bench. Labor's Chris Bowen slammed the new government of having lack of women saying that even Afghanistan has more women (3) in it's cabinet than Australia.
- A report surfaced about Bob Carr resigning from the senate and replaced by Paul Howes (Former Australian Workers Union national secretary). Carr represented Australia in the G20 summit in St Petersburg as foreign minister. He refused to lead the Labor Party as leading the Opposition from the senate was too hard.
- Mark Latham recommended Mark Dreyfus to become the new leader of Labor. Between Bill Shorten and Anthony Albanese, Latham preferred Albanese and described him as an "interlectual lightweight".
- Clive Palmer accused the Australian Electoral Commission of being corrupt with links to ex-military officials. He feared that he will not win the seat of Fairfax and demanded a fresh election with the AEC run by independents.
- Julia Gillard made online statements congratulating Labor for retaining the seat of Lalor and the Labor party for their election effort. She moved back to Adelaide and purchased a house worth over $1.85 million. She claimed that Rudd's loss in the election was due to lacking new ideas.
- Victorian Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews slammed Federal Labor for their lack of unity and described their past six years as "toxic soap opera". He still believed that the federal election defeat will not hamper Labor's chances in the 2014 Victorian State election.
- Victorian seat of Indi fell to Independent Cathy McGowan with a 9.2% swing from the Liberals. If Sophie Mirabella did not lose her seat, Abbott stated that she would have been in his Cabinet.
- Upon returning to government, Treasurer Joe Hockey presented a $18 billion deficit on the federal budget which is the same as the previous Labor budget. Hockey pointed out that the budget is "still deteriorating". Former Treasurer Wayne Swan called him to stop acting "childish". Hockey was concerned that the US Government shutdown will hurt the Australian economy.
- Bill Shorten was elected as leader of the Labor Party. Tanya Plibersek became deputy leader of Labor and shadow foreign minister. There were also 11 women in the front bench.
- The new parliament consisted of 90 Coalition seats and 55 Labor seats and 5 crossbenchers.
- Kevin Rudd resigned from parliament resulting in a by election in Griffith. Bill Glasson got the most votes but was defeated by Labor's Terri Butler in the preference countings
Here is the political situation around the states of Australia as of September 7 2013.
Northern Territory - The Country Liberal Party won the 2012 state election from Labor with Terry Mills being Chief Minister until March 2013 when Adam Giles won a leadership spill.
Australian Captital Territory - Labor's Katy Gallagher managed to hang on to power despite having fewer votes after the 2012 state election with both Liberal and Labor having eight seats each and Greens having one.
Tasmania - Labor's David Bartlett took office in 2008 and managed to hang on to power despite having fewer votes after the 2010 election. He retired due to family reasons and was replaced by Lara Giddings. Both Liberal and Labor have ten seats each while the Greens have five. Giddings is Tasmania's first female Premier.
South Australia - Labor's Mike Rann had been premier since 2002 and still managed to hang on to power despite having fewer votes after the 2010 election. He retired in 2011 and was replaced by Jay Weatherill. Liberal's Isobel Redmond was replaced by Steven Marshall after a leadership dispute in 2013. Marshall created a new shadow cabinet with eight members rather than fifteen.
Western Australia - Liberal's Colin Barnett narrowly won the state election in 2010 and faced alot of controversies like railway line to demestic airport terminal which was about to close, deals with the Aboriginal communities and rising state debt. Against Labor's Mark McGowan in the 2013 state election on March 9 2013, the Liberals scored seven extra seats with a 10% swing in votes. The Nationals also gained two seats while McGowan only blamed himself for the election defeat. He remained as leader of the opposition for the state. The Liberal and National Parties have only formed a partnership rather than a coalition after it was broken when Labor took power in 2001. Barnett's did not see his victory in the 2013 state election as a second term but rather a new start. Both state and federal Labor were happy when a deal was finally reached with Barnett to sign WA up to the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
Queensland - Labor dominated Queensland while the National Party was larger than the Liberal Party due to majority of the population living in rural areas. Despite coalition efforts, the two parties merged and became the Liberal National Party led by Campbell Newman. Newman, former mayor of Brisbane, became leader despite not having a parliamentary seat with his area of Ashgrove preferring their Labor candidate. During the 2012 election, Anna Bligh and her Labor government lost 44 seats and was reduced down to seven seats (aka netball team). Newman and the LNP had a landslide victory and won 78 seats out of the 89 seats in the Queensland parliament. Katter's Australian Party also won two seats with Bob Katter's son Rob being state leader of the party. The LNP hoped that the coalition will win the 2013 Federal Election to guarantee funding for upgrading Charles highway and floodproofing it.
New South Wales - Labor controlled the state since 1995 with Bob Carr being premier until 2005 with three different premiers since the 2007 state election due to leadership spills. After 16 years of Labor, Barry O'Farrell and his Liberal National coalition won a landslide victory in the 2011 state election and scored 34 seats while Labor lost 32 seats and reduced down to 20 seats. After countless scandals and corruption problems, Kevin Rudd and federal Labor took full control of the state's Labor party.
Victoria - Labor's Steve Bracks ruled the state from 1999 to 2007. The Liberal and National parties seperated and went their own ways against the Labor government. After the 2006 election, Bracks resigned in 2007 due to family reasons and John Brumby became premier. Labor had problems with rising crime, a failing Myki ticketing system, late/delayed/cancelled public transport, rise in living costs and long waiting lists on hospital surgeries. The Liberal and National Parties formed a coalition again and won the 2010 state election. Liberal's Ted Baillieu promised change but it was not an easy road for him. A police report was published which was believed to be an attempt by former Chief Commissioner Simon Overland to make Labor not look too bad at stopping crime. Overland resigned and Ken Lay became the new Chief Commissioner. Former Labor spokesman and current leader of the opposition Daniel Andrews took his fight against the Coalition government to a new high. The coalition had made serious cuts to TAFE, huge increase in waiting lines for hospital surgery, $66 million cuts from rural firefighters, 41,000 jobs lost, dispute with teachers pay, ambulance crisis and VCAL cuts. Labor slammed the Coalition for cutting Victoria down to recession. Andrews tried to be an effective opposition leader by joining protests against Coalition cuts and talked to victims of job losses including the 1200 job losses from Ford in Geelong and Broadmeadows. Ted Baillieu resigned after a police tape scandal along with a number of scandals from Geoff Shaw. Despite the scandals, Baillieu supported him but Shaw ditched him and became an independent. This left the state parliament with the Coalition losing it's majority with 44 seats and Labor having 43 seats. Baillieu resigned and was replaced by Denis Napthine who became premier on his 61th birthday. Andrews demanded answers to the leadership shift and stressed that the job of premier is not a birthday gift but is elected by the people. National leader Peter Ryan remained as deputy but under Napthine, no longer had his police minister portfolio. The Napthine Government had agreed with the Rudd Government on school funding and had decided to build an $8 billion East-West link tunnel. The opposition opposed this as it would not ease congession and believed that Napthine had his priorities wrong. Kevin Rudd and Bill Shorten managed to reach a deal with Napthine to sign up to Gonski.