Within 90 minutes of Labor Leader Bill Shorten appearing before the country to concede defeat, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has fronted a packed Media Conference in Sydney to claim victory in the 2016 Federal election.
In his speech the Prime Minister has re-committed his Government to Medicare, to robust health and education services and to a determination to bring the Budget into balance to build “The economy of the future.”
He spoke of a commitment to Australian families and to future.
Mr Turnbull also endorsed Labor Leader Bill Shortens’ calls for more cooperation between all members of the 45th Parliament.
He has also supported Mr Shortens’ calls for an examination of electronic voting for future Australian elections and foreshadowed changes to the Australian Electoral Act to “tighten” regulations on election practices into the future.
The Prime Minister signals more regulation for “Robo” call practices and electioneering “Text” messaging.
He says the past election saw unprecedented levels of “Deceptive messages, targeted to those people most likely to be misinformed by them.”
Looking relaxed during the course of his 27-minute speech and Media Conference, the Prime Minister says the new Coalition Ministry will be sworn in “sometime within the next week.”
He says he will await the return of the Governor General who currently representing Australia at events overseas.
The Prime Minister also confirmed that there will be little change to the Cabinet Lineup in his new look Government, saying we should only expect changes to those positions now vacant from non-returning members.
The Prime Minister thanked Opposition Leader Bill Shorten, wife Chloe and past political candidates and welcomed new members of the 45th Parliament.
He thanked the families of political candidates, Liberal and National Party Volunteers, and he singled out cross benchers, Bob Katter, Cathy McGowan, Andrew Willkie and Nick Xenophon for committing to work with the Coalition to ensure stability into the future.
‘This a great day today. We have resolved this election and done so peacefully. It is something we should celebrate and not take for granted.” The Prime Minister told the nation.
WHERE TO FROM HERE?
Malcolm Turnbull will now call on the Governor General and seek permission to form the next Government of Australia.
He will work to fill Ministerial vacancies created by the resignation or non-return of several of his past Ministers and they will then be sworn in once the Governor General returns from his duties overseas.
CURRENT STATE OF PLAY
At Present the Coalition has won 74 seats, Labor 66, five remain in doubt and Independents hold 5.
It is now generally thought that the final count will see the Coalition able to govern in their own right, winning 76 seats, to labors 69.
That makes for an extremely tight 45th Parliament, with the Coalition also having to nominate one of its number as Speaker.
It will therefore depend on the support of the Independents or a casting Speakers vote for continuous issues and votes before the house.
Difficult enough in the House of Reps, but now all Political eyes are on the final Senate make up which is tipped to be as bad for the Coalition as the last Senate, if not worse.