THE NEWS WRAP: Labor blame game begins after WA election result

Further divisions have opened up within the federal Labor government following Liberal Premier Colin Barnett’s landslide victory in the West Australian state elections, with Defence Minister Stephen Smith acknowledging federal Labor’s recent troubles had an impact on the result.


“[Voters] don’t like the Labor Party, they don’t like the way it works, they don’t like the way it functions, they don’t like the fact that it seems to shift around in terms of its positioning on issues,” former WA premier Geoff Gallop told Sky News.


However, the impact of federal issues on the WA state election result is being downplayed by Gillard supporters.


“All I’d say is that electoral and political success does not come from internal games; it’s formed by delivering outcomes that benefit all Australians,” said Special Minister of State Gary Gray.


No paltry price as TPG plucks Inghams for $880 million


Private equity group TPG Capital has announced it is purchasing poultry producer Ingham Enterprises for $880 million, outbidding rivals including Blackstone, Affinity and Chinese agribusiness company New Hope.


Under the deal, the Ingham family retain their rural property portfolio, along with their interests in the racing industry.


“[We’re] privileged to be buying a great Australian business from a great Australian businessman,” said TPG managing partner Ben Gray.


O’Connor under fire after further 457 visa criticisms


Federal Immigration Minister Brendan O’Connor has again warned about the possible misuse of the 457 skilled migration visa program during an interview with the ABC’s Insiders over the weekend, also claiming the program should not be a route to permanent residency.


“I do not accept that the temporary skilled scheme should be used in such a manner, in the way that [Tony] Abbott has referred to it, [as] the ‘mainstay of immigration’. To displace the opportunities for young people and other workers in Victoria and around Australia,” O’Connor said.


The former small business minister’s comments have come under criticism from a range of community and multicultural groups, including the Australian Multicultural Council.




The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 0.5% up to 14397.1. The Aussie dollar is down to US102.1 cents.


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