Ministers rally behind besieged Gillard

2012-04-30 12:00

kalahari.com

Sydney - Senior politicians rallied behind Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard on Monday as a new poll showed her Labour Party was deeply unpopular with a public who want her to call an early election.

After months of scandals, Gillard acted to clear the political air on Sunday by sidelining two lawmakers facing unsavoury allegations which she said had resulted in a line being crossed about respect for parliament.

But she remains under intense pressure to call an election, not due until 2013, with a poll in Sydney's Daily Telegraph revealing 52% of voters were in favour of a vote of no confidence in her government.

"We've got a lot of work to do and we know that," Finance Minister Penny Wong told Channel Nine in response to the poll of 1 019 people which showed Labour's vote had dropped to just 30% - from 34% in January.

But she said Gillard had "made the right call in what has been a pretty difficult circumstance" in relation to the scandals involving parliamentary speaker Peter Slipper and ex-Labour lawmaker Craig Thomson.

Slipper is accused of sexually harassing a staffer and misusing travel entitlements and Thomson of using the credit card of his former employer, a trade union, to pay for prostitutes, lavish meals and to get cash advances.

Leadership challenge

Both men strongly deny the claims but Gillard said Slipper had agreed to stand aside as speaker indefinitely, while Thomson has quit the Labour Party and will move to the crossbenches until his matter is resolved.

The scandals have increased speculation that Gillard, who scraped into power after 2010 elections resulted in a deadlocked parliament by forming a coalition with a Greens MP and several independents, may face a new leadership challenge.

The loss of Thomson reduces Labour's numbers in the 150-seat House of Representatives and she must rely on the support of a Greens MP and two independents to have control of 74 votes. The opposition controls 73 votes.

Gillard saw off a leadership ballot against former prime minister Kevin Rudd in February, crushing him 71 to 31 in a Labour Party room vote, but speculation is mounting that her time is running out.

Trade Minister Craig Emerson said he had not spoken to Labour colleagues about dumping Gillard, but said there was "always chatter about this sort of thing".

But he added: "Her job is safe because she is a leader with gutsy determination."

Read more on:    julia gillard  |  australia
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Stellenbosch - 18:16 PM
    Road name: R44 Southbound
    DELAYS between the R310 Adam Tas Street and Paradyskloof Road
  • Thursday Milnerton - 17:45 PM
    Road name: Marine Drive Northbound
    DELAYS between Boundary Road and Blaauwberg Road
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2 TV Series for R250

Get 2 TV Series box sets for R250 and save up to R148! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Pre-order the Xbox One

Get this all-in-one entertainment system with live TV, movies, social networking and gaming. Pre-order now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on electronics!

Save up to 35% on electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Nokia C3

The Nokia C3 Features a 2+ Megapixel Camera, A2DP, Bluetooth,...

From R1175.60

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Your heart is big and you are sensitive to the needs of those around you. Your humanitarian side is emphasized today and you may...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.