Left Menu
Development News Edition

FACTBOX-Australia's election: key themes and contests

Reuters | Updated: 17-05-2019 06:03 IST | Created: 17-05-2019 06:03 IST
FACTBOX-Australia's election: key themes and contests
Australians go to the polls on Saturday in a contest to determine whether conservative Prime Minister Scott Morrison can maintain his shaky grip on power or whether the centre-left Labor party will return to office after six years in opposition. Opinion polls show Morrison trailing Labor as voters turn on his coalition government after six years of tumultuous rule that has seen two leaders ousted while in office, although polls narrowed during the campaign.

The winner will need to claim at least 76 seats in the 151-seat lower House of Representatives. Below are several prominent contests.

FORMER PM BATTLES MODERATE REVOLT Former prime minister Tony Abbott is struggling to retain the affluent seat in Sydney he has held for 25 years.

Polls show Abbott is in a close battle with independent Zali Steggall, a former Olympian turned lawyer who has won support with her calls for more action on climate change. Abbott, who previously called on Australia to abandon its pledge to reduce greenhouse emissions, is widely seen as instrumental in the ousting of former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull last year.

He is one of a handful of prominent conservatives under pressure in traditional blue-ribbon seats. Analysts say a Labor victory is likely at a national level should he lose his seat. VICTORIAN WOES

Conservative lawmakers are not the only ones under pressure. Socially moderate Treasurer Josh Frydenberg faces a stiff challenge from an independent, while Health Minister Greg Hunt also faces an uphill battle in southern Victoria state.

Both are struggling amid a wave of frustration in Victoria, home to Australia's second-largest city, Melbourne. The opposition Liberal party suffered a heavy defeat to the Labor government in state elections in November, a result seen as a rejection of conservative policies.

RURAL DISCONTENT Climate change is also pressuring the Nationals, the rural-focused junior partner in the federal Liberal-National coalition government.

With a drought wilting crops across Australia's east, the Nationals have come under pressure over their support of Australia's coal industry, a major contributor to greenhouse emissions. This is expected to play out most acutely in Victoria and the western regions of New South Wales state.

Mallee in rural Victoria has long been considered one of the safest coalition seats but several independents are pushing the Nationals after incumbent Andrew Broad was forced to resign over a scandal. QUEENSLAND APPEAL

While Morrison's conservative politics may not be popular in some metropolitan areas of Australia, they are expected to resonate in the northeastern state of Queensland. Rural voters in Queensland are a critical bloc in several marginal seats.

Morrison's coalition will need to carry seats such as Herbert in Queensland's north if it is to retain power. Labor's Cathy O'Toole won Herbert in 2016 by just 37 votes and, with the coal industry a major employer in the electorate, Morrison's candidate could win a seat away from the opposition.

WHAT NEXT FOR THE RIGHT? Whoever wins power faces an anxious few weeks to determine the composition of the upper house Senate, where 76 seats will be contested.

Morrison's legislative agenda was hampered throughout his short tenure by a hostile Senate, where independents held the balance of power. Several right-wing candidates are trying to win Senate seats. The nationalist One Nation Party was once the dominant player in a crowded field but its standing has fallen amid a series of scandals.

However, voter frustration with the major parties remains and other right-wing parties are scrambling to step in. (Reporting by Colin Packham Editing by Paul Tait)

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Download The Devdiscourse News App for Latest News.


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Education post-coronavirus: Schools to rush for more digitalization

Digital education would undoubtedly boom in the post-coronavirus world, supported by educational institutions that have discovered its efficiency during the crisis, but it is still not expected to outshine traditional classroom learning....

Public health care post-COVID 19 to go for revamping, not rebooting

Until now, the economies used to classify healthcare sector under social expenditure. However, the devastation caused by COVID 19 pandemic has upgraded public healthcare on topmost priority and core economic activity for controlling future ...

Coronavirus lockdowns to speed up long-pending revamping of supply chains

With millions of production lines impacted, business disruptions to some extent are unavoidable and the lessons learned from this turbulence will leave an everlasting impact on both global and local levels of supply chains....

COVID 19 to catalyze the redefinition of urban planning and sustainability

Until now the urban planning was focused on mitigation to natural disastrous, climate change, pollution, chronic illness and lifestyle diseases. However, the global pandemic of novel coronavirus is going to change the whole narrative of urb...

Videos

Latest News

FURIA Esports rally to win in ESL North America play

FURIA Esports emerged victorious in their opener of the North America portion of the ESL Pro League Season 11 tournament with a 2-1 win over Team Liquid on Sunday. Team Liquid recorded a 16-10 victory on Nuke to claim the early advantage be...

Japanese comedian Ken Shimura dies from coronavirus - NHK

Japanese comedian Ken Shimura, who had been hospitalised after being infected with the new coronavirus, has died, public broadcaster NHK reported on Monday. He was 70.Shimura, one of the countrys best-known comedians with a career dating ba...

China sees drop in new coronavirus cases; none in Hubei for 6th day

Mainland China reported 31 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, including one locally transmitted infection, the countrys National Health Commission said, dropping from 45 cases a day earlier.The commission said in a statement on Monday that fo...

COLUMN-Global oil storage to fill rapidly as consumption plunges: Kemp

Global oil storage is filling up rapidly as the coronavirus pandemic reduces consumption by tens of millions of barrels per day bpd while leading oil producers have yet to rein in their crude output. No comprehensive data exists on total st...

Give Feedback