Judith Brett is an emeritus professor of politics at La Trobe University. Her latest book is From Secret Ballot to Democracy Sausage: How Australia Got Compulsory Voting.
By this author
Rudd the narcissist
The 2013 election campaign came down to a contest between constancy and charisma, but Labor should have reined in its leader.
The trouble with inexperienced ministers
Changing prime ministers
What Kevin Rudd could learn from Julia Gillard about leadership
It’s only super till you die
Taxes, death and superannuation
A taxing year
Australia’s policy drought
Political Animal: The Making of Tony Abbott
Correspondence to David Marr’s Quarterly Essay Political AnimalIn Political Animal, David Marr gives us two Abbotts: Politics Abbott and Values Abbott. The first is the man of driving ambition who competes hard for …
Gillard and the misogynists
They Had It Coming
Managing the risk
The big lesson of the past few months of financial crises is that government is the ultimate risk manager. When all else fails, be it the weather, our marriage, the banks or even our child-care provider, we turn to the state. Natural-disaster relief is …
A bureaucrat’s briefing
Last October we were all fixed on the election due by the end of the year. John Howard didn't set the date till mid month, and then he went for the maximum six-week campaign. It was hard to think past 24 November, and hard to imagine what sort of prime …
What stands between Australia and a one-party state?
Is Malcolm Turnbull all that stands between Australia and a one-party state?
We all know the picture: Labor governments in all states and territories, as well as Canberra; the Lord Mayor of Brisbane the highest-ranking Liberal officeholder in the land; …
Now that John Howard has finally gone, it is possible to start thinking about the future again. All through 2007, as it looked more and more likely that Kevin Rudd would lead Labor to victory, it was hard to think beyond election night. Could Howard perform …
It’s Bennelong time
On the campaign trail with Maxine McKew
The knack of successful political leadership in parliamentary democracies is to balance the politics of unity with those of division, to put yourself forward as the representative and protector of the nation as a whole while using every trick in the book …
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